COMMENT: Finding a randomer’s phone is a crash course in STRESS

by

Most of us have been there at one time or another.

You’re chilling in a café or minding your own business on the Luas, and out of the corner of your eye you spot a lone phone.

Eyes darting from side to side, you look for a possible owner before realising you’re the only person who has spotted it meaning you – and you alone – are now solely responsible for reuniting it with its owner.

In a perfect world, you could deposit it behind the counter or leave it with the tram driver, but – and let’s be honest here – you kind of want the glory attached to returning the device to its rightful owner yourself.

So, you edge closer to it and pray no one accuses you of stealing it as you reach down to check if it’s unlocked.

Feeling like a cross between a spy and a delinquent, you fiddle it with for a moment before realising it is indeed locked – safety first, guys – and then you wonder why you ever got involved in the first place.

You can't ring their last dialled, you can't call their mam, and you can't get involved in their group chat about that melter of a girl in work, so what was the point?

No one asked you to get involved, but you just had to go and stick your nose in, and now you’re staring at a screensaver of a kissing couple, and feeling like a total weirdo.

What if they walk in right now? What if they cause a scene? How will I explain it? Will they believe me? I wouldn’t believe me.

But then a sense of determination kicks in, and you become energised by the prospect of being this person’s saviour, and soon find yourself leaving the establishment or disembarking the tram while grasping someone else’s lifeline between your sweaty fingers.

You silently urge it to ring so you can explain yourself and wait for the effusive gratitude which will flood down the line, but it doesn’t ring.

Messages come through, alarms go off, reminders beep, and still the owner has yet to make contact.

Becoming irrationally irritated by their lack of interest, you realise your desire to be the ‘good guy’ wasn’t worth the effort, and you kind of wish you’d left it where it was.

“That’ll teach them for being so careless,” you’ll think while happily ignoring the countless times you’ve parted ways with your own phone through no real fault of your own.

And then it rings!

Cue unsteady breathing as the person at the other end of the line tries to ascertain whether your voice belongs to someone who makes a habit of stealing phones or an individual who simply wanted their moment in the sun.

“I found your phone!” you’ll yelp. “It’s safe! I have it here! It’s safe! Can you hear me? I'm minding it!”

And then the ‘thank you’s, and the ‘you’re a star’s and the ‘you’ve made my day’s start rolling in and you make no effort to stop them because – let’s face it – you ARE a star and you HAVE made their day.

And so what if you post your good deed all over Facebook or dine out on the karma philosophy for weeks – you've earned it.

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