Jim Rome hooked me on BlackBerry…

My loyalty to the BlackBerry cell phone came from an unlikely source.

That source was sports broadcaster and commentator Jim Rome.

Yes, that Jim Rome.  Van Smack.  Host of a very popular radio sports show, and a few stints as host of a televised sports talk show.  You know, have a take, don’t suck or you’ll get run…

One day, I was listening to a tape-delayed episode of the Jim Rome show on 980 WOFX way back in the day (Jim Rome used to get on radio station program directors’ cases for tape-delaying his show, he would encourage the “clones” – his fans – to get on the phone and “bang their monkey” to get the show aired live), and Jim was talking about the soreness in his thumbs from using his “CrackBerry” phone all day and night.

Yep.  It was the BlackBerry.

And I wanted one badly.  Listen, if a cool sports talk guy like Jim Rome just off-the-cuff mentions his BlackBerry cell phone, then dang I want one as well.

Eventually I acquired a used BlackBerry off eBay and replaced the cheep-cheep cell phone Verizon sold me.  I stuck with that BlackBerry until it died, and then went through four more Berries – including my last two, the Q10 and the PRIV.  I still have the Priv.  And I’m not letting go of it.

Thus came the news.  This week, BlackBerry will no longer manufacture their own cell phones.  Future phones will be manufactured by a third party; whether they contain the BlackBerry brand name and BES software and all that remains to be seen.

Yeah, I’m disappointed.

But that doesn’t mean that I’m cutting loose my BlackBerry addiction.

Far from it.

Right now, for me, the BlackBerry PRIV is the best choice.  It has equally dedicated levels of speed, security and functionality.  Plus, it has that swank slide-out keyboard that the old BlackBerry Torch phones possessed.

So if, God forbid, my PRIV starts to die, I will go on eBay and get another PRIV 100-2 (that’s the designation for the Verizon-based phone).  And I will keep getting BlackBerry PRIVs until I can’t find any more out there.

Because I don’t want to live in a world soldered to planned obsolescence.  I don’t believe that a product should only work for a few years and then you replace it because something shinier and prettier comes along.  We’re in a disposable world, but that doesn’t mean we have to live our lives as if that was the only choice.

Yeah, Jim Rome hooked me on BlackBerry.  Even to the point where I still have my BlackBerry Q10 phone in case my PRIV ever completely dies – gotta have a BlackBerry to back up a BlackBerry.

Kinda wish there was still a radio station around here that broadcast the Jim Rome show, or at least someone who could simulcast it on SiriusXM radio.

But yeah.  BlackBerry may not make their phones any more, but that doesn’t mean I’m switching my cell phone loyalties.

That’s it.

Rack me.

I’m out.