I don’t know about the rest of you, but I hate the phone.
I wish I had a time machine so I could go back and strangle Alexander Bell before he invented it.
Because his invention has had quite an impact on my life.
When I was younger, I thought it came second only to the radio.
The phone was like magic in a box.
People could call you across the miles and discover in seconds, how and what you were doing.
It served to communicate good news, bad news, and everything in between.
As I grew older, I continued to value the phone and its perks.
Potential employers could reach me to relay that I would finally be able to pay off my student loans.
Boyfriends in the local area could call and talk my ear off for hours without it costing either of us a cent.
I could gossip with friends about their love affairs, their husband’s love affairs or any love affair that was taking place in the neighborhood.
Yes, the phone was entertaining.
But then I became a mother and began to realize how much of a nuisance the phone could be.
I still remember the time I spent two hours singing the Son to sleep when he was a baby, only to have a ringing phone wake him up.
Given it was one in the morning, I thought it was an emergency.
My mother calling to ask if it was okay to give a stray dog cat food.
As the years passed, my hatred for the phone grew.
It became an intrusive and annoying little fiend who had the power to wake up the kids, the dog, and the Significant Other.
It interrupted meals, family discussions, and sex.
It rang in the morning, afternoon, and throughout the night.
The worst thing was, you couldn’t ignore it because the person on the other end wouldn’t allow it.
If it was my family, my refusal to pick up resulted in them calling the police.
If it was the Significant Other’s family, not answering resulted in them coming over to see what was wrong.
This forced us to plan our lives around phone calls.
Important family conversations had to be scheduled around times we knew the phone wouldn’t ring.
This generally meant anytime between 2 and 6am.
Sex was scheduled in a similar fashion.
A typical conversation on the subject between the Significant Other and myself went something like this:
“Hurry! We have about 20 minutes and 15 seconds before my mother calls and asks me to explain the difference between a Phillips and a flathead screwdriver.”
“Are you kidding me? Then I don’t want to hear any complaints that the foreplay sucks or is nonexistent.”
“Someday I’ll figure out a way to kill the phone and you won’t be able to use it as an excuse.”
“Someday your family will get a life and stop calling at ungodly hours.”
“Someday your mom will stop calling to verify that I’m feeding you.”
“Great! Lets try again tomorrow at 2am.”
It was no wonder I was ready to yank the phone out of the wall.
And I would have if it weren’t for the fact that persistent callers would then turn to texting our cell phones, emailing and leaving messages on the Significant Other’s Facebook page, asking, “WHY THE HELL AREN’T YOU PICKING UP THE PHONE? IS SOMETHING WRONG?”
What could be wrong other than the fact that I’d broken glassware, fell down the stairs, sprained my ankle, stepped on the dog, walked out of the shower fully soaped, choked on food, and nearly set the kitchen on fire, all in the attempt to answer the phone?
Alexander Bell, thank you. Thank you so much.