It seems that an increasing number of people across the world are asking to be buried with their mobile phones.
Martin Raymond, director of international trend-spotting think-tank, The Future Laboratory said that this had started off “in the realm of the urban myth”, but was fast becoming fact.
“You hear about it, the idea that people are being buried with their mobile phones, but you can’t really believe it,” he told the BBC World Service’s Culture Shock programme.
He explained that the first cases of people asking to be buried with their phone originated in Cape Town, where some people’s belief in witchcraft meant they feared that “they could fall under a spell, be put to sleep and actually be buried.
“In fact, they were asking for the phones to be put into the coffins with them in case they woke up.”
It isn’t just fear of being buried alive that’s behind this. There is also, it seems, something about taking status symbols to the grave which suggests that the brash secularism of western culture might be nothing more than a veneer disguising more ancient instincts.
But supposing you did take your phone across the Styx. You’d have to be Bill Gates to be able to afford to use it. Orange charge Â£1.10 per minute to make a voice call in the USA, and a whacking Â£10 per MB for GPRS there. How much would they charge from “the other side”?
With a doff of the cap to Peter Glover for pointing out the story.