Every now and again, when I’m out in public, I’ll see someone talking on the phone. And they don’t look happy. I don’t blame them. I don’t like getting phone calls myself. I liked the olden days when you could run to Wal-Mart or Walgreens without being bothered by someone. I still like talking on the phone to some degree if the call is important, but important is always based on an individual’s point of view.
Ever text someone something simple that could get a simple answer? Next thing you know, they’ll calling you. For fuck’s sake, what’s the matter?!
I think phone calls are a thing that are only pertinent to a certain generation of people born between the 1930s to the 1970s. Millennials, Gen Xers and especially Gen Zers have gotten used to texting. It’s simple. It doesn’t bother anyone. You can still watch a TV show or movie while doing it. You can still eat or drink something.
And the most important thing is, you usually don’t have to stop what you’re doing to get around to it. You can let half an hour or even a day pass without getting back to someone, sometimes.
Granted, you could eat chips and watch The Price is Right while on the phone but it’s just fucking rude. Nothing I wait more than when someone calls and The View or even Sesame Street is on in the background. And they’re eating. Hearing people eat amplified in your ear is just terrible. Also, calling during dinner time used to be a major no-no. Now, people think they can bother you at anytime by calling you on your cell.
And I say “bother” because that’s what we’re doing. We’re not calling really quick to tell someone something. That was the phone’s initial attention. That’s what Alexander Graham Bell said. “Mr. Watson, come here, I want to see you.” It was simple and to the point. He wasn’t telling you about someone in accounting at their work who doesn’t make a fresh pot of coffee after getting the last cup.
No, it’s became a reason for people to relay their problems on other people. Sometimes you have to listen. But most of the time, people are just complaining of how bad their lives are…because all they fucking do is annoy people on the phone.
Times have also changed. They used to say don’t call someone before 9 a.m. or after 9 p.m. But people got to bed earlier after a rough day and they go to work later. If you call someone who works the second shift at 9:30 a.m. and they don’t get up until noon, then, you’re taken away two hours of their time. You can put your phone on silent but if someone lives close by, they’ll just come banging on your door. (Another thing that you really should stop doing if you do it already.)
Some phone calls are necessary if there is an emergency. And by emergency that means it’s medical mostly. Or God forbid, there has been a severe accident or death in the family or of a close friend. Then, by all means, give someone a call.
But if you’re just calling to tell someone about Aunt Mildred’s biopsy tests, send a text. Because you’re really not calling on Aunt Mildred’s behalf, you’re just looking for a reason to call someone. I don’t understand this fixations moms have with their children calling them once they’ve left the houses in which they grew up. Is retirement that boring? Do middle-aged and senior citizens sit around all day wondering what other people are doing? It seems so. (And from what I’ve heard about people growing in toxic abusive families, there’s a reason they’re not calling.)
I don’t want to generalize an entire gender, but on behalf of men, let me say, We. Do. Not. Like. To. Talk. On. The. Phone. Without. A. Purpose. We don’t like “just to talk” on the phone. We might be able to talk in person, but unnecessary and uninteresting phone calls aren’t our thing.
They say it’s rude to hang up on someone, but if someone isn’t telling you anything you care to hear, hang up on them. You might have to be somewhere. You might have a date or an appointment. I say, 15 minutes should be the maximum, but 20 minutes if it’s an emergency. If you can’t say what you can say in 1,200 seconds, you need to write a letter as the old saying goes.
And why do people think texting is bad. It’s just another form of written communications. Human civilization survived centuries with only written correspondence between people. Then, e-mails came along in the 1990s, but e-mails were considered too impersonal. Why? I think it had more to do with technology than it did with the level of communicating.
There are certain people who always have to control a conversation. That’s why they like to call people all the time and tell them useless information. For most of us, we spent years trying to get away from the one-horse shit towns we grew up in. Why the hell do we care about the old carpet factory closing down. That’s why God invented social media. You don’t need a parent or relative spending 30 minutes telling you about how your uncle used to work there before you were born.
Another thing I read is that when you call someone, it takes them an average of 15 minutes to return to the mindset they were in before you call. There’s been a few time and a few people who call me and I feel like I just need to do something to get my mind back on to something. But really, I think when you call someone, you’re immediately telling them that your time is more important than their time.
I’m not talking about phone calls for work. I worked in a call center and I worked at two newspapers. The phones were always fucking ringing. But do you think people who worked in coal mines wanted to do it on the weekends too? Hell no!
Also, that reminds me. Don’t call people at work with something that can wait until they’re off work. I know you just thought about it, but how about making a mental note or scheduling it on your phone to call someone later. And these are usually parents who can’t understand the importance of their child’s job. They make be meeting with a supervisor or a client. They may be working on a project that needs to be finished as soon as possible. And you’re calling them at 3:55 p.m. because you want to discuss where Thanksgiving dinner will be held.
Speaking of work. If any of you are out job hunting, do not, and I repeat do not repeatedly call some place that is looking for work to check up on the status of your application. Yes, it’s a dick move that some company’s do this when the job listing specifies “NO PHONE CALLS PLEASE!!” Forget what your Boomer parents say dismissing it as, “That’s just for people who aren’t serious.” No, it’s for everyone who’s applied. The office where you turned in an application may not be the department screen the applicants. Hell, you may be calling a workplace where they have no fucking idea a job was listed. But I can tell you that phone calls on a job application are a sure way of not getting considered.
At my job in Wagoner, Okla., I had someone call three or four times over a two-week period to check up on the process. When I finally had to them them they weren’t being considered, they didn’t take it well. In the future, don’t call twice a week.
Like I said, times have changed. I think this fixation a certain demographic has on phone calls comes from an era in which many women were stay at home spouses/parents. So, getting a call from someone or calling someone was the only way they were allowed to communicate. Human communication is important. That’s why some older people are more inclined to “pop in” or even call you while they’re nearby to see if they want to visit. I think t’s really rude to “pop in” at someone’s house just as it is to “blind call” someone to talk.
The family dynamic isn’t what it used to be. Dad might be giving the kids a bath while mom has gone to the gym to exercise. It might be family movie night. They may be out seeing a movie. Even if there’s no kids, a couple might be having their own time. Believe it or not, they say it’s healthy for couples to have some time to themselves during the day. And what are you doing? You’re calling “just to talk.”
I also don’t think some people like to make conversation suddenly with someone out of the blue. I hate calling people mostly because I feel I’m catching them at a really bad time. And this makes me feel bad. And I don’t like being made to feel bad. No one does.
They say now, it’s proper to text someone to see if you can call them. I think that’s appropriate. You shouldn’t just call someone while they’re busy. Send a text. And never, leave a voice message.
Voice messages were only important back before we didn’t have caller ID not texting. This was how we screened calls. Now, that it’s almost 2022, if you’re leaving a voice messages, you’re pretty much aggravating an issue. Most people just delete voice messages without listening to them unless it’s from someone they don’t know or haven’t heard from in a while.
Part of the reason I got rid of a landline, other than it was a waste of money once I got Wi-Fi, was that people would call the landline and if I didn’t immediately answer, they’d call the cell phone. I’m thinking, “Holy shit! It’s an emergency! Something bad has happened!” So, I’m stopping what I’m doing and calling something and they respond by saying they just want to talk.
This is beyond rude. It’s intrusive. And for everyone to realize this, you do not need to give anyone an excuse of why you didn’t answer a phone call. You’re allowed to have a life that doesn’t revolve around sitting by a phone 24/7 waiting for someone to call you. So, stop asking what they were doing when they don’t immediately answer or return your call.
What do you think Please comment.