In a city known for its revolving door of young professionals, graduate students and eager-eyed Hill staffers, many a mobile phone number proves that home is where the cell is.
Like a rear-windshield decal or an old college T-shirt, a cellphone number has become as much a part of an identity as a Social Security number. It represents a hometown, a college or a first job, and such memories are not casually thrown aside for a few good years with a 202 romance. For these area-code clingers, those 10 little digits provide a constant in the face of changing locations and uncertain futures.
Samantha Test, 27, is the proud owner of the Cadillac of area codes, San Francisco's 415. Like its East Coast rival, New York's 917, it is has enormous cachet. A Californian who attended Berkeley and lived in the Bay Area after college, Ms. Test says she just "feels more like a 415 than a 202."