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  • Robert Stines

Just My Phone (No Wallet, No Keys)

Adam Sandler has a really cool song tilted "Phone Wallet Keys." In the song, he starts out by saying:

I'm heading out and all I'm takin' with me is my phone, wallet, keys Yeah, phone, wallet, keys Just those three things please, need my phone, wallet, keys

Here is a link to the song. Be warned, in true Adam Sandler fashion, kids should not watch this.

By the end of the song he realizes he needs more than just his phone, wallet and keys. The list includes Laptop, phone, wallet, keys, charger, iPad etc, etc, etc. As hilarious as this song is, there is some truth that the smartphone is becoming the only accessory we need for daily activities (no wallet, no keys).

Since the launch of the iPhone, our lives rely more on smartphones, apps, and constant connectivity. Children no longer covet their first car. Instead, they covet their first phone.

Adam Sandler's song made me ponder how I have slowly shed accessaries that were once considered necessary, with the exception of my coveted phone.

No Wallet

When I was in the military, I had lower back problems. The military chiropractor said my hips were not aligned. He noticed I carried a thick wallet in my back pocket (no cash, just random cards). He explained that sitting on the wallet was exacerbating the problem with my hips. He suggested I carry the wallet in my front pocket. Having a bulge in my front pocket was not cool, so I quickly ditched the wallet for a money clip. I rarely carried cash, so the money clip became a card clip.

I frequently misplaced my card clip, but always had my phone with me. It soon became clear that I needed to carry my cards, with my phone. So, I bought a phone case with enough slots for credit cards, driver's license, and my Florida Bar card.

No more wallet!

No Bulky Briefcase

When I started practicing law, my mother gave me a beautiful leather briefcase. The briefcase was symbolic of being a member of the corporate world.

Amongst attorneys, a fresh, clean briefcase screamed green. It was a telling sign that an attorney was not battle-ready. There are stories of new attorneys dragging their briefcases on grass and gravel to get rid of the "newness."

As the years went by, I was proud of my leather briefcase filled with documents, books, laptop, notepads, pens, highlighters, post-its, and scoff marks. Heavy and bulky, my briefcase was a necessary accessory for the old-school attorney persona. Even though I attempted to fit in with the old-school attorneys who carried reams of paper to hearings and depositions, I was quickly gaining a reputation as a more tech-savvy attorney - a bit of a rogue.

In my office, I was the first to strive for a paperless environment To be clear, my desire for a paperless office was not because of environmental concerns. Paperless to me meant freedom. Paperless meant I was no longer tethered to my desk and office. All my documents, notes, and outlines were scanned and saved to the cloud, which then became accessible on any device, including my phone.

As my paperless vision became reality, I would proudly tell everyone that my true office consisted of my laptop and phone (a mobile office). As long as I had an internet connection (by using my phone as a hotspot) I could work.

I started attending hearings and depositions with just my iPad and laptop, while opposing counsel lugged binders, stacks of documents, and, of course, the briefcase.

Eventually, I shed the briefcase.

Just My Phone . . . Soon

Once, I accidentally locked my briefcase with my laptop in my car, and I was forced to take an entire deposition with just my phone. Opposing counsel watched in awe as I used my phone to make notes, discuss documents, and ask questions from a digital outline.

I still use a laptop, but I find myself relying more and more on just my iPad and phone.

Purely by accident, I realized that the laptop and iPad are slowly going the way of my wallet and briefcase. For the last couple of weeks, I've been leaving the house with just my phone (without the case), license, keys and one credit card. On some days the credit card stays in the car because I have ApplePay.

One problem though, just like my wallet, I have a tendency to misplace my keys.

I recently learned that some vehicles, like Teslas, use phones to gain entry and start the vehicle. So, eventually, my keys might become unnecessary.

My stack of cards may have to go as well because my phone will soon become my credit card and proof of identification. Maybe through biometrics and data-sharing, we may not need IDs.

Eventually, through technology, the only accoutrement we will need is the phone.

I'm heading out and all I'm takin' with me is my phone . . . (no wallet, no keys)

~ Florida Cyber Lawyer, Robert Stines, Esq., CIPP


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