BRAIN FOOD: Words-worth - Cellular Macarena

The Greeks have a word for it, we used to say, but these days the linguistic action has gone west. In America, no new phenomenon goes unrecorded, unreported or unlabelled. Which brings us to 'Cellular Macarena'. What we now know as a 'mobile' was once, even here, called a 'cellular phone' because of the way it works. It connects to transmitters covering small geographical areas called cells. Cellphones were introduced in 1983 in the US and now there are more than 100 million of them. So when a phone rings in a crowded room or public place, everyone present thinks: 'It's for me.' And, as you will have noticed, everyone simultaneously starts patting their jacket pocket, shirt pocket, trouser pocket, back trouser pocket, and so on ... The result is a faintly embarrassing dance, of a kind last seen during a short-lived craze of summer 1996: a Cellular Macarena, in fact.

by
Last Updated: 31 Aug 2010

Find this article useful?

Get more great articles like this in your inbox every lunchtime

Mike Ashley: Does it matter if the public hates you right now?

The Sports Direct founder’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic has drawn criticism, but in the...

4 films to keep you sane during the coronavirus lockdown

Cirrus CEO Simon Hayward shares some choices to put things in perspective.

Pandemic ends public love affair with Richard Branson et al

Opinion: The larger-than-life corporate mavericks who rose to prominence in the 80s and 90s suddenly...

The Squiggly Career: How to be a chief strengths spotter

When leading remotely, it's more important than ever to make sure your people spend their...

"Blind CVs don't improve your access to talent"

Opinion: If you want to hire socially mobile go-getters, you need to know the context...

The highs and lows of being a super-achiever

Pay it Forward podcast: techUK boss Jacqueline de Rojas and Google UK's marketing strategy and...