Call Me

First of all, before I tell you this story, I have a confession to make.

We are old school.

We have a home phone.

This is NOT our home phone.  This is the home phone I grew up with.  I was thankful for the long cord that stretched just behind my bedroom door or to the bathroom where I could close the door and talk in private.  If this phone could talk.....
This is NOT our home phone. This is the home phone I grew up with. I was thankful for the long cord that stretched just behind my bedroom door or to the bathroom where I could close the door and talk in private. If this phone could talk…..

It may very well be one of those things that happens because “we’ve always had one.”  Nevertheless, we have it, and we use it.

So this morning when I finished talking on it, I asked our Princess if she would please go hang it up.

She took the portable phone from me, turned it over in her hands, and said, “Hang it up?  How am I supposed to hang this up? Where do you want me to hang it?”

The sad thing is, I think she was serious.

And then it hit me.

We now have a whole generation of children who will never have to worry about having a long enough cord to stretch so that they can have a private conversation.  They will never have to panic in the midst of dialing and have to hang up and start spinning the wheel again to dial on a rotary phone.  (I have nightmares about this.)  Nor will they ever have the satisfaction of slamming a phone down to end a call.  (Not that I would know anything about that.  Ahem.)

Wow.

I just have a hard time fathoming that they won’t be able to fathom what it’s like to have a rotary dial wall phone.

This evening I was talking about that with one of our neighborfriends.  They don’t have a home phone at their house–they just use their cell phones.  It occurred to me as we were talking, that our children, this next generation, will have a totally different phone etiquette than I was raised with.  We answered whatever call came through (this was before caller ID).  We politely asked someone to hold while we got the person they were calling for–even if it was Mama and she was cooking supper and it was a telemarketer.  (They didn’t call back again, I can assure you of that.)  We didn’t KNOW who was calling, so we answered.

Even with our home phone, with the introduction of caller ID, my children rarely answer the phone.  Only when one of them is for certain SURE of who it is will he or she answer the call.  I’ve come in from walking Miss Sophie to find out we had a call, but no one answered it.  Fascinating, really.  I can remember my siblings and me racing to answer the phone.  Except during supper.  Either we didn’t answer it, or we did the “We are eating, can I call you back?” thing.

Will it be when they enter the workforce that this generation of children will learn how to answer a phone call that more than likely isn’t for them?  To say politely, “May I ask who is calling?”  or “Hold a moment please, I will go and get him.”  Will the onslaught of cell phones, and children getting them earlier and earlier, and with texting and social media being all the rage, I do have to wonder if our children will ever learn the art of good phone conversations.

It’s something to ponder for sure.

In the meantime, in our “old school” home, I think we might have a new subject to study this next school year.  Phone etiquette.   I fear that it might soon go the way of the lost art of letter writing.

How about y’all?  Where do you see our children headed when it comes to telephone communication?

Here’s hoping it isn’t lost forever.  There’s nothing like a good phone visit to get me through a sink of dirty dishes or several loads of laundry to fold, and there’s nothing better than chatting while I sit and listen to the birds and watch the leaves bouncing in the breeze back there in my roost.  May you all have a good visit today with someone you call friend.

Love to all.

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2 thoughts on “Call Me

  1. Lara Blanchett Carlton

    First let me say how much reading your daily thoughts makes me miss you sweet friend! We really must get together! And second I wholeheartedly echo these thoughts. Not too long ago I found myself attempting to explain (rather unsuccessfully) to my children what long distance, person to person, & collect calls even were. I did even begin to try to explain how much joy & trouble we found at grandma’s house because she was on a party line! As we did back when we first met, you & I share a love for home & simplicity. Thanks for bringing me joy each day as I read your words & often get swept back to sweet & precious memories of my own. Shame on me for not thanking you sooner. My baby girl will be graduating from high school today & the nostalgia is running deep this morning. Thanks for reminding me memories in our heart are the most precious thing of all. I’ll be making good on the plan for us to get together for a long visit soon!

  2. Oh La. To see your name and “Call Me” (ironic) together this morning warmed my heart. YES we MUST get together. I think the last time we were together your baby girl and my big girl were quite small. Congratulations on S’s graduations today. I know you are proud of who she is becoming. Such a beautiful girl, just like her Mama. (You do know you’ll never be older than 19 in my heart, right?) We do share so much, and thank you for remembering. You owe me no thanks. I thank you for making time to read my meanderings. The only thing I ask is that YES, let’s do make time to get together soon. Thanks for remembering and for the happy tears I am shedding this morning. You are a jewel and a precious friend. Love you. Always.

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