Newt Gingrich Is "Puzzled" About Cellphones

Your News Companion by Ben Mathis-Lilley
May 13 2013 10:29 AM

Newt Gingrich Has Come Up Empty in His Weeks-Long Quest to Rename His Cellphone

Newt Gingrich wants you to know that he is "puzzled" about what to call his cellphone, which can do a whole lot more than simply make calls. I'm puzzled by his entire video on the topic, but mostly by the fact that he hasn't heard of the term smartphone.

The former House speaker uploaded the above video to YouTube on Friday, although it's only starting to rack up the views now. In it, Gingrich asks for help coming up with a new name for that fancy black rectangle in his hand, one that will help "explain to people that they carry in their hand literally the potential to have a dramatic revolution in how we get things done." The best alternative he and his team—yes, he has his best men at Gingrich Productions working on this—have come up with in the "weeks" they've spent on the task is: "handheld computer."

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[Note how Gingrich manages to make a play for the attention of Web-savvy youth by both using the term "horseless carriage" and by slaughtering his pronunciation of Wikipedia.]

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Josh Voorhees is a Slate senior writer. He lives in Iowa City.