Yesterday at Church I overheard one of the other women mentioning that she didn't finish a project because she was interrupted by a phone call. This got me thinking about our culture...
I remember as a kid that every time the phone would ring it would 99% of the time be for you and only some times be the wrong number. It would also be a call that was important to you and NOT someone on the other end trying to sell you anything or take your money.
My how things have changed.
I remember as a teenager that the calls became more frequent because sales calls started up. My mom hated these calls so much that she made me become her answering service. I would have to answer the call and let her know who and why the caller was on the line...of course if it was a sales call I would simply tell them that my mother wasn't available and hang up.
Sales calls started getting pushier back then as businesses hired folks to do nothing but call and sell their products and the lively hood of these poor folks depended on them selling. So sales folk started asking when my mother would be available to take the call. Back then saying the truth (NEVER!) was considered rude so I had to invent some lie to get them off the phone.
Eventually we got an answering machine and screened our calls. They still called, but we didn't have to answer.
When it was just mom & me living together I put the outgoing message on our machine the chorus to a BeeGee's song "I've just gotta get a message to you... hold on...hold on..." Unfortunately that lasted all of a week because my mom's friends complained that they didn't know who they were calling. I thought it was quite clever and her friends should have been smart enough to know that only one person that they are calling would have such a message...the HUGE BeeGee's fan. oh well
Years later we got caller ID and this was wonderful because our friends no longer had to wait through the answering machine to get though.
But those pushy businesses and scammers started getting sneaky and changing their caller ID... and then everyone and their brother got a cell phone and caller ID went out the window. So back to letting the answering machine do the screening.
My husband got upset with me for "being rude" and not answering calls from numbers I didn't know. But when he would answer and try to get rid of the caller he quickly picked up on how difficult it was getting to get them to understand the word NO. He doesn't answer as much anymore. The last call he picked up they asked for me and it turned out to be a political survey. I hung up and rolled my eyes at him.
It is clear to me that for now, the callers are relying on folks still considering the phone call to be important to them.
However, that isn't happening at my house. If you are lucky enough to have my phone number, expect that I won't answer it.
Sorry, not sorry.