Friday, September 7, 2012

A Monday Musing for Friday?

My article for Sunday ran in Thursday's paper, and is below. Hope that you enjoy it, especially if you remember the things that I do!

Recently our cell phone provider called us (for the 157th time) to let us know that we can upgrade our phones. You see my phone is 2 years old, and is a flip phone. Operation of this phone is simple and I did not need to attend a class to learn how to use my phone. Call me out of date, behind the times, or old fashioned, it doesn’t matter to me. My phone has a few ringtones and my daughter taught me how to text, that is enough.
The current fascination with phones does not impress me. Young people would be crippled without these devices. They would have to figure out how to speak and communicate face to face with actual human beings. They would have to type using more than their thumbs. Remember manual typewriters? That is how my generation learned to type.
My daughter and I were talking about phones and how they have changed in her lifetime. Laughing I told her that we had party lines during my early teen years. You had to listen for a dial tone before dialing. The other “parties” on your line could be using the phone. This was before the private lines that we now enjoy and dialing direct. She asked what dialing direct was. I explained that we dialed 0 and talked to the operator to call long distance. She was amazed that such an antiquated means of communication had actually existed. I felt another line creep across my face and the arthritis began to kick in.
“That is awful to have had a party line! How did you handle that as a teenager?” she asked me. I told her that it was easier than rounding up the dinosaur and riding over to the cave of the person that you wanted to talk to. My offspring paused for a moment; trying to decide if that was true.
In the meantime, we have no interest in our provider’s fancy phones. My phone works, for now, and it does what it needs to do. As long as it continues to work, that is good enough. If I need something to sing and dance, well I can do that for myself, and without a contract! Now if you will excuse me, I have a dinosaur to deal with, that old flip phone is ringing.

16 comments:

  1. Hi Melanie! What an excellent article and I can understand why it was published. I'm kinda like you - I use my phone to call folks and I can text. No games, no froo froo. Well, I can get on the internet with my phone! :)
    Be a sweetie,
    Shelia ;)

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    1. Shelia, you are much more advanced than I am!!! Thanks Shelia!!!

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  2. OMG, this is hilarious, and so true too! I remember the party lines. Anyhoo, we are not much into phones and all either. Hubby has to keep a phone on him 24/7 because he has nsg home patients and has to be available. Well, his battery will not keep a charge (he still has a flip phone and refuses to upgrade)Soooo, he sends me to the cell phone store to see if maybe they had a battery for it. I couldn't remember the name of his phone, so I gave them (very young employees)the account info so they could pull it up on the computer. They started laughing hysterically about his phone and let me know that he is way past being elgible for an upgrade. He still refuses, so I don't know what will happen with the phone thing. He truly has to have one at all times.

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    1. I am laughing with you!!! I will continue to fight the upgrade thing until mine dies completely too!!!! Teresa, you made my day with this comment!!

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  3. I can not imagine what our phones and internet will be like in 5 or 10 years. Everything is changing so rapidly. My phone is for calling out and for incoming calls.... that's all I need.
    Hope you have a great weekend!

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    1. It is hard to imagine isn't it? Guess that my flip phone will be pre-dinosaur by that time!!! Thanks Dolores!!!!

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  4. lol..I didn't even have a cell phone until last year! My niece got it for me for my birthday and is paying the fee...bless her heart. Anyway, she didn't think I was too phone smart, I guess so she bought me a flip phone but...she had to go to THREE Verizon stores before she found one! Ha! I love it...it is all I need! I always think of what a waste of money for everyone to be upgrading all the time...good post.

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    1. You have a sweet neice!!! I agree, upgrading all of the time is a waste of money!!! I am happy with my dinosaur!!

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  5. LOL! You are too funny, Melanie!! I remember party lines, direct dial and making sure the dinosaur was let out before we went to bed. I have a Droid. The trip to Crazy Town gets shorter every time I try to use the browser on my phone. It works when it wants to work, not necessarily when I need it to work. I'm ready to fling it across the room. Hmmm....Maybe I can repurpose it into a nice coaster.

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    1. Peggy, a coaster sounds like a marvelous idea!!! I don't have one of those smart phones because the trip to crazy town is already short enough!!! LOL!! We had to put the dinosaur out at night too, those things made such a mess, they knocked over everything in the cave and then they ate our homework!!! Thanks Peggy!!!!!!

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  6. Melanie, I remember the party lines too and the old rotary dial black phones! I do have a smartphone but I don't use it very much. I even turned off the data plan for about a year, then I put it back on because I can check emails, etc while waiting in doctor's offices with my mom. At least I feel like I'm "doing" something while I'm there.

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    1. Aren't you glad that we don't have to contend with party lines and rotary dial phones now?
      At some point we will all have to make the change to the smart phones, but I am puttinig it off as long as I can!!! Thanks Jane!!!!

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  7. Your article is great! and so true! My 15 year old daughter is wanting an iphone but so far I've told her "NO"! She does have a regular cell phone that she's only had a year of so. If I do give in to her about the iphone, she is paying for it plus any extra charges! I really hate having to pay all these phone bills!

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    1. So glad that you visited me and enjoyed the article!!! Those phone bills can add up quickly!!!

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  8. Just found your blog. I really enjoy it. My family shared a party line with an elderly woman down the street, although she didn't know it. I used to pick weeds for her as a kid, and she would always say to me, I can't get through to you on the phone, it's always busy.
    I was just telling my soon to be teenager about that and she couldn't believe it. I told her when we had phone calls, we actually had a cord on the phone, and had to stay in the same room as the phone. When the phone rings here, she takes off...Things sure have changed.
    Ann

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    1. Ann, I am so glad that you found me!! Yes, I too remember those busy signals too!!! You are so right, things have changed!!! I love call waiting, private lines etc.! It sure is much easier than hopping on that dinosaur to rode to someone else's cave!! Thanks for visiting!!!!

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