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Before Cell Phones ...

The biggest issue inside our rocky household probably comes as no big surprise: phone use.

Problems arise everyday about the phone. Who are you calling? Whoís on the phone? How long have you been on? I need to use it. Get off the phone.

These are regular comments inside my house about the phone that are made frequently. Whenever Iím talking on the phone (which is the supreme sin) for more than oh, a good long millisecond, Iím asked one of these questions, or actually usually just told to do more invisible schoolwork that Iíve already done. In that case, my next action is either to die of supreme boredom or just whine about the totally one-sided rules of the dwelling.

Actually parents do have more important things to talk about than young adults do. Take this example: Me talking to very sick friend: Hey, are you going to be all right? Did the Medics find all your limbs yet? Have they stopped the internal bleeding?

Parents talking to the MCI salesmanís wife: No, silly, youíre wrong again. Velveeta cheese DOES NOT go with Shop and Save Macaroni.

These are the kinds of educational fulfilling conversations parents actually have after they have a stroke fighting you to get off the phone. My parentsí three biggest objectives during their lifetime happen to be to get me off the phone, cut me off food, and take away all my friends so I have none. Two of which they have accomplished, but they havenít cut me off food yet.

The fights about phone use are worse. Usually itís just a bitter argument, starting from a small "itís important" but ending with the phone ripped out of the wall, two people dead, some bloody gloves, and a white Bronco parked outside.

The people who actually get through to us on the phone obviously donít know how lucky they are. Countless numbers of people (when they get through) whine about how long our phone was busy. We just deny being on the phone and try to change the subject quickly, but in truth we know that weíve been on the phone a little too long.

Itís so easy though these days to get all these extra services like call waiting, new lines inside the house, etc., but apparently not easy or inexpensive enough for my parents (partly because the pesky salespeople trying to sell these services call at the worst times and are horribly annoying).

My parentsí idea of a good phone line is not to have one. Iím sure they would prefer smoke signals or even long-distance runners to carry our messages, but my parents are considerate for the town not looking like a forest fire and the lives of runners our conversations would waste.

All this stuff over the phone is worth it. The time that Iíve spent in the emergency room is all worth it when I have finally won the battle to put the phone in my hand. Like right now I have the phone in my possession and <CLICK> mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmSorry, your party has been disconnected.

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© By Paul Adams