Predictive text can be so unpredictably ridiculous

TECHNOLOGY has never been my strong point, but I can at least manage the basics.

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However, even I was confused when I turned on my iPod the other day and the following message appeared... 'Try again in 22,338,448 minutes.'

That adds up to 372,307 hours or 15,512 days which equates to 42.5 years - and by my reckoning I'll be in my 90s and deaf as a post.

I showed my friends this message the other day and we laughed when Mae turned to the subject of predictive texting and how sometimes messages don't appear as they are intended.

"I've sent a few crackers in my time," she said.

"When my daughter suspected she might be in labour, I texted her back and asked, 'Have you had any contraptions'?"

To be honest we weren't sure if the problem was the predictive texting or just Mae being Mae.

"And," she continued, "I had given a friend of mine a lift home one evening and she was unusually quiet throughout the journey.

"After dropping her off I decided I should make sure she was okay and unfortunately I texted her ,'Hi Jackie, hope you're OK and sorry for my erotic driving'."

After we stopped laughing it was my turn to own up.

"Well," I butted in, "my brother Jim was caught out a few days ago too."

I explained how he had told me his unfortunate experience.

"I could hardly look the woman in the eye when I met her," Jim told me as he showed me his mobile.

He had been texting a tenant of his whose washing machine had broken.

"I'll replace it on Saturday morning," was Jim's message, "and sorry for any incontinence'."

We all laughed at his embarrassment when my daughter Jenna added: "My friend Avril had just heard her pal's mum had died and texted her pal. 'Hi Charlene. Just heard about your mum. LOL XXX'. Apparently Avril thought LOL meant Lots Of Love instead of 'Laugh Out Loud'.

All the talk of phones reminded me of the time I got my first real all-singing-all-dancing mobile.

On my first day after it was charged and up and running, I was so chuffed with it that I must have showed it to everyone I met.

However, that evening I went out after work with my friend for a couple of drinks.

Yet again I bored her with the new apps, etc, but on returning from the toilet I couldn't find it.

I searched and searched and Susan had the bright idea of dialling my number.

"It might be at the bottom of your bag," she suggested.

But no.

Eventually, I returned to the toilet and could hear a strange noise coming from a cubicle, and on inspection I was horrified to find my new phone submerged in water down the loo still flashing and vibrating.

I blamed Susan for causing it to vibrate off the top of the toilet cistern.

Christine then added: "Remember when mobiles first came out and they were the size of a brick?"

And soon we were recalling the night Christine got a lift to Edinburgh for a night out with her friend Marlene.

Part of the way into the journey, Christine caught sight of a very large white phone in the middle of the front seats tucked under the handbrake.

"What's that for?" Christine asked.

"Oh. It's in case Billy tries to get me," Marlene innocently replied. "I didn't tell him I was taking you to Edinburgh so no doubt he'll call."

"Well," replied Christine shaking her head in despair, "Not on that he won't ... that's a house phone."

"No no." insisted Marlene, " It's cordless."

"Aye, sure it is," agreed Christine "It's cordless but it's not a mobile phone. And it's only got a 20-yard signal radius."

However, apparently Marlene was unconvinced and waited patiently for Billy's call ... which strangely never came.

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