Rupert Goodwins' Diary

Friday 10/12/2004We have long been aware of the risks of mobile phone use. Among those health risks that are well understood -- naff ring tones and talking too loudly lead to a punch on the schnozz -- there are the more subtle radiological issues.

Friday 10/12/2004

We have long been aware of the risks of mobile phone use. Among those health risks that are well understood -- naff ring tones and talking too loudly lead to a punch on the schnozz -- there are the more subtle radiological issues. Nobody's shown that there really are significant health risks, but nonetheless people bang on about tumours, DNA damage and other frightening fleshy disorders. And which part of the body is most sensitive to radiation? Why, that'll be the reproductive organs, already in the spotlight this week for their susceptibility to laptop heating. Heaven help the bloke using a 3G card on the move -- he might as well check himself into a monastery.

But now the gonads are fighting back. Reports from Sweden - where else? -- say that tight trousers are the number two cause of mobile phone breakage. Snug strides, strained to breaking point by their normal contents, have so little wiggle room that a mobile phone squeezed into a pocket will shatter from the pressure. Pour yourself into a really effective set of religion-revealers, and you're consigning yourself to a life of mobile misery.

The answer, of course, is a revival of Madchester Baggy. Mobile phone companies should immediately employ such members of the Soup Dragons, Inspiral Carpets and the Stone Roses as can be medically certified as alive, and set off plundering that part of our immediate cultural past. I'd be grateful if they left the pudding-bowl haircuts out of it, mind. If it could cure our young Scandinavian brethren of their fondness for support hose disguised as high fashion, I'd be only to happy to help promote it. After that, we can start on those peculiarly shaped and coloured plastic spectacle frames which enjoy such popularity on the Continent -- any chance of a study that shows they make computers crash?

Us gentlemen of a more generous build are spared all this, as the thought of your correspondent in anything other than the most adequately proportioned trews is so grotesquely against nature that there's probably a law of quantum physics that prohibits it -- Heisenberg's Unsuitability Principle. However, I have in the past disposed of an unfortunate mobile or two by sitting on them: there are armoured devices designed to cope with the rigours of life on building sites, but in general it makes more sense to keep the gizmos well away from highly stressed areas below the waist. That's a pretty good general rule for life, come to think of it...

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