The phone is a demonic device. When I told the people at work that my phone was over ten years old they told me point blank that it was time for a new one. (I asked for one for Christmas) So if you were ever my roommate that phone was decommissioned in January 2010. I don’t hate this new phone as much as I hated the old one and I am more apt to answer it simply because it’s prettier, cleaner, and its numbers light up. If I cared enough, I could call the phone company and ask them to add call display to the list of things they already charge me for.
I used to swear that I couldn’t work at a call centre, 1) because I couldn’t sit still for that long. And 2) because I couldn’t spend what can be up to 9 hours a day with strangers voices speaking in my ear. Somehow I’ve manage, I even won a free cell phone from work; it made a great paper weight.
You see, there’s no way to know when someone is going to call. I can’t see the other person and feel like I have trouble connecting with the person on the other side. Also,there’s seems to be no way to bridge those long pauses: Do you say good bye or try to start with something else? What are they doing on the other side? When they say “Is Frosty there?” are they looking to sell you something or is it indeed a friend?
After a few weird theatre experiences where people have followed(stalked) me to your place of work claiming to be a prince and speak 5 tribal languages or make their way backstage and tell me they know they went to school with me and they didn’t: I make sure not to put my real name or address in the phone book. So I get lots of calls for Fred Duncan, and pleas to for me to reconnect someone from Ontario with their long last pen pal Fiona, even though the answering machine clearly states: “You’ve reached Frosty…”
For some legal reason I gave work my number. So there’s nothing like getting out of the shower an hour before I have to leave for work and hearing the phone ring. Do I answer the phone? Is it an emergency? Did I shut the living room curtain before I jumped in the shower? Maybe I’ll let the answering machine get it. Then they ask if I would like to add another hour onto my 9 hour day. I blame the phone.
And then there’s the disturbance. I don’t like to be interrupted if I’m in the middle of a good book, or a good movie, or a chocolate brownie (one cannot disturb the worship of the chocolate brownie). My personal favorite is Me: “I’ve got 45 minutes to stop crying figure out why I’m so emotional before I head out the door to work…” and the phone rings. Well, I’m not answering it!!!
All phone experiences have not been bad. There have been friends that I have had great conversations with on the phone and there are great activities, shows and workshops that I’ve signed up for by the phone. And I’m used to a world where there was no internet and the phone kept us connected. And maybe in the future, and because I have the cutest phone ever, I will want to have great chats on the phone, but I am forever grateful of a world of Facebook and e-mail addresses.