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Thread: John Shore and his phone within a phone. By John Shore features@seacoastonline.com August 23, 2009 7:16 AM Technology is terrific. It improves communication and makes things better and in some c

  1. #1
    fins85258 is offline
    SBH Insider Joined: May 2005 Scottsdale, AZ Posts: 3,467
    John Shore and his phone within a phone.
    By John Shore
    features@seacoastonline.com
    August 23, 2009 7:16 AM
    Technology is terrific. It improves communication and makes things better and in some cases safer but I'm not convinced that all advances in technology are good. Let's take a look at the telephone.

    Kids, when I was young, the telephone was attached to the wall. When you talked on the phone you stood right next to it and maybe paced around in a little circle. The rich kids could afford one of those really long cords that allowed you to walk all the way into the next room, but then they'd spend the next 20 minutes trying to untangle the phone cord spaghetti that resulted.

    There were phones that sat on a table, but the cord still connected to the wall. My parents actually had a telephone table in our hallway that had a chair that you could sit in while talking on the phone, and it had a little drawer where you could store a pad of paper and pencils. It don't get much more convenient than that.

    I would argue that advancements in telephone technology have robbed children today of a host of fun and games that will never be available again. Take for example the crank call. This provided many hours of fun when I was a kid.

    Here's how it worked. You'd pick up the phone book (remember those?) and randomly choose a phone number. Next you dial the number and when someone answered you would ask a hilarious question like "Is your refrigerator running?" "Yes," "Well you'd better go after it then!" This would be followed by an eruption of laughter and a quick hang up of the phone.

    Thanks to caller ID this game is gone forever - No more stealthy midnight shenanigans for me . or anyone else.

    Here's another way phone technology has ruined fun for young people. I used to have an 11 p.m., curfew in high school. If I were late and my parents wanted an explanation, my answer was simple, "Sorry I was late, I lost track of time and I couldn't find a pay phone." Yes, pay phones once dotted the landscape at convenient stores and gas stations. But now that every child is born with a cell phone attached to his hip, the pay phone kind of faded away.

    And with the demise of the pay phone went the never-ending search for change in the coin return. When I was young, it was impossible for me to pass a pay phone without jamming my finger in the coin return groping for a dime. I was sure SOMEONE would have their dime returned to them and forget to take it with them. Now that I think about it, I don't think I ever found any money that way. But hey, it was fun.

    Plus, without the pay phone, there was also no need for a phone booth. Ah yes, the 2-foot-wide rectangular glass box with the potentially dangerous folding door, was all that was needed to make your public call in private. I think we should still have phone booths and we should force people who make public cell phone calls to stand inside. I'm getting really tired of being privy to people's private phone calls at the grocery store or even a public rest room.

    Phones never caused car accidents when I was young. Only the ultra rich in the back of limousines talked on phones while in a car and they had someone else doing the driving for them. Plus I'm guessing that they weren't just chatting with their BFFs either. Those car phones were used for million-dollar business deals and stuff like that.

    I did know a couple of bratty girls who had their own phones but those were attached to a wall too. These scheming lassies convinced their parents that they should have their own phones so they wouldn't tie up the family phone line. It's amazing how many parents fell for that one.

    Yes cell phones are great for emergencies and winning stuff by being the correct caller to a radio station, but I also think the youth of today are missing out on some important adolescent fun like crank calling your brother from a friend's house scaring the pants off him by impersonating a police officer and demanding that he come down to the station. Now that's just good clean fun.
    "Life is Short, But you're Dead a Looooooooooooong Time"

  2. #2
    GramChop is offline
    SBH Insider Joined: Jul 2007 Austin, Texas Posts: 17,848
    thanks for the morning chuckle and the trip down memory lane, fins!

    i remember calling our local grocery store and having the following telephone exchange:

    me: "do you have prince albert in a can?"
    store clerk: "well, yes, we do!"
    me: "you better let him out before he suffocates!!!!"

    and then i would hang up and my girlfriends and i would laugh hysterically! fun times!
    The waves of the sea bring me back to me.

  3. #3
    Voosh is offline
    SBH Insider Joined: Jan 2007 Detroit Posts: 13,148
    "Is your refrigerator running? Well, why aren't you out chasing it?" Always loved that one.

    Our grandson ran to answer the phone recently. It was on our landline. He was so frustrated that he couldn't find the "talk" button while hearing a voice coming out of the handset saying "Hello? Hello? Are you there?"
    Yeah, Yeah - IMHO

  4. #4
    andynap is online now
    SBH Insider Joined: Oct 2002 Philadelphia Posts: 45,176
    Quote Originally Posted by gramchop
    thanks for the morning chuckle and the trip down memory lane, fins!

    i remember calling our local grocery store and having the following telephone exchange:

    me: "do you have prince albert in a can?"
    store clerk: "well, yes, we do!"
    me: "you better let him out before he suffocates!!!!"

    and then i would hang up and my girlfriends and i would laugh hysterically! fun times!

    You trickster you- haven't changed a bit. :crazy:


    Andy

  5. #5
    GramChop is offline
    SBH Insider Joined: Jul 2007 Austin, Texas Posts: 17,848
    i absolutely REFUSE to grow up! i'm having far too much fun!
    The waves of the sea bring me back to me.

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