I’ve always been a hands-on and visual learner, preferring to process information by seeing and tactile practice. Even in grade school, I remember my teachers always complaining, “Are you listening to me?” (no.) “Did you hear what I just said?” (nope.)

In college, where the preferred method of teaching was mainly lectures, I’d write notes fast and furious (I created my very own shorthand and was good at deciphering my own chicken-scratch), often scribbling word-for-word what the professor was saying. Then, to study, I’d re-copy all of my notes 2 or 3 times by hand. Back then, laptops were silly-expensive and I relied on my Bic pen, spiral notebook and lots of bandages to cover blisters on the sides of my third finger.

[Oh, and by the way, both my boys are the same way – they learn by, “Show me, Mommy!” or “Lemmee try!”]

This is why I had never gotten into audio podcasts. It’s just too much listening to people talk. Stuff that I hear goes in one ear and just falls right back out.

Recently, I finally learned how to connect my iPhone to my car’s speakers via Bluetooth so that I could take phone calls through the car instead of holding onto a phone. I’m short, Asian, female and suck at driving. I really do need both hands on the wheel. The problem with calling through the car stereo is that the microphone in the car is somewhere NOT NEAR MY FACE. It’s on the dashboard, behind the windshield wiper lever, near the air conditioning vent.

So if the other person I’m talking with has trouble hearing me (like all the time), I have to turn off the A/C or heater, lean forward and speak loudly, enunciating EACH. IN-DIVID-UAL SYL-LA-BLE. Which is even more distracting than if I had just held the damn phone in my hand.

I’ve tried the Bluetooth headset route, but it’s just too staticky and the phone gets all confused about which Bluetooth device to connect to – the car? the headset? and I kept dropping the call.

I’ve resorted to plugging in my ear buds to the phone and only using one of the buds in my ear. I can hear much better, but since my ear bud doesn’t have a microphone, I have to prop my phone up on my chest, using my boobs as a sticky shelf (pushup bras help with that) and propping the microphone close to my mouth. Awkward.


This post originally was supposed to be about podcasts. Somehow I’ve digressed and now you know I play with my boobs in the car. Double awkward.





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Comments 16

  1. Ti

    My suggestion? Don’t take calls while driving 🙂 Just thinking of your safety.

    BTW…my husband uses a device that he sync to his stereo, but it has it’s own mic so he clips it on the visor and it works great. Too great sometimes.

  2. Jake

    You probably don’t want to hear this, but you shouldn’t be talking on the phone while driving at all. It’s not the holding or playing with the phone that’s the problem, it’s the actual talking. We looked at this in one of my psychology classes in college. When people talk on the phone while driving, they have the same or worse awareness and reaction times as people who are drunk over the legal limit. Psychologists think that it’s because visualising the person you are talking to takes too much attention away from driving. Listening to audio books or talking with someone in the car doesn’t have those problems. So for your sake and the sake of others, if you get a call that you need to take, pull over first.

  3. Christine (Cook the Story)

    lol! I’ve never tried the whole headset thing for talking on the phone in the car. But you know why not? Any car time that isn’t spent consoling a crying baby with little murmurs or listening to the non-stop chatter of my 4-year-old is my precious podcast-listening time (as is all the time I spend doing laundry AND washing dishes). I’m addicted. So now I can’t wait to hear what you have to say about them!

  4. Annie

    Jaden, I’m LMAO right now because I have the same problem, though I don’t have the boobs to play with in the car. Me: short (5’2″, barely), Asian. I understand your pain and frustration. Those hands free earbuds suck like there’s no tomorrow. Though I think I’ve found speakers that actually don’t require that I shout out every syllable and the battery life is amazing. Plus it’s inexpensive, at $25,

    I clip it to the passenger side visor and it has no problem picking up sound.

  5. Faleen

    Thank you so much for the smile today…i really needed it. Hope all is well with you and your family as well as the ‘critters’.

  6. Gabrielle

    I can totally see all of this happening in your car and I am cracking up. My grandmother was 4’10” and I can only imagine what might have happened had she been around to have a cell phone. Her driving was scary enough as it was.

  7. Conni Smith

    This is hilarious!

    Okay – I can TOTALLY relate with the learning style. If I read something, I remember it. If you tell it to me…I will not. And forget my kids reading me a math problem. They might as well start speaking Mandarin.

    And yeah – I just love driving down the road screaming at my dash because if I shut off the defroster, my windshield *instantly* ices up. Windshields do not like Alaskan winters. But if I don’t scream, the person can’t hear me. I feel so lady-like.

  8. Graham M

    As Annie mentioned, a bluetooth visor speaker is definitely the way to go. I’ve had one for a little over a year, and it will solve most if not all the issues you’ve had. The one I was given is nice and clear, and folks on the other end have no problem hearing me.

    As to your learning style, I’m in the same boat. I chuckled when I recently heard this fitting quote:

    “Tell me and I forget, teach me and I may remember, involve me and I learn.”

    ― Benjamin Franklin

  9. Georgia Yankee

    And here’s why talking on the phone is different from talking with someone in the car: when things on the road get interesting and the driver should give 100% concentration to driving, the passenger(s) he or she is talking with can see the same thing and know they should shut up (most of the time).

    The problem with the phone is that the person on the other end has no idea what you’re doing, and for some reason, many drivers think it’s more important to pay attention to the call than the road. Like if you’re talking to the boss.

  10. Lynn

    Ha ha! You are so awesome, Jaden! Just don’t get in a car crash while you are juggling the phone and the girls. That would be way too tough to explain.

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