8 months ago 🏆 for day 309, 2019 with 418 words.

Nobody Home

Long ago in a time period that many readers will not have experienced or may have difficulty comprehending there were no smart phones, there wasn't any mobile phones, and generally speaking cordless phones were rare. You can assume there was no Internet as well.

The only phone that existed was the "dumb phone", AKA: Landline. If it rang you answered it for the very simple reason that you had no idea who was calling. Thankfully, at least in the UK, if it ran it generally was somebody you wanted to speak to and not a cold caller trying to sell you something.

That has all changed. When CallerID became common you could make a decision, answer of not. By then we also had answering machines (or services) so the unanswered caller could leave messages.

Eventually we got SMS and Instant Messaging. We could instantly delivered messages to each other. We also had e-mail by this point but that was not the same kind of communication. IM was interactive - assuming the person was online at the time as we were still using modems. SMS was real-time assuming the person had a mobile phone - which they probably didn't.

Then we all switched to Smartphones and became permanently available. E-mails were delivered quickly, instant messages by whatever platform you used, were indeed instant. Everybody was online all the time.

Something happened to phone calls. People stopped calling each other, and then - at least in the US - junk phone calls went through the roof.

Almost all of my calls are junk calls. I don't answer the phone anymore. I use number blocking software so that calls from known junk numbers don't even ring my phone. The ringer is off. Nobody calls that I would want to talk with anyway.

I don't think I'm the only one. Everyone has been pushed to the point of junk calls taking over their phone that nobody answers.

I miss phone calls, they need to come back. Every now and again I randomly call one of my friends. They are always surprised that somebody called them out of the blue just to say "hello". That's how it used to be. People you wanted to talk to used to call you up and you would talk about what was going on in your life and catch up.

I want that back.

PS: Does anybody actually send real handwritten letters anymore? I miss them too.


Start writing today, for free

Write Together is a safe space to blog, think, feel, and share together. Learn to write, or find a new home for your words, and join our passionate community.

Sign up Learn more
User Photo

By Yorick Phoenix 🏆

Chief WriteTogether Bug Finder & character stringer. Generally, to create computer code, but sometimes actual words and paragraphs. Listens to lots of music, takes lots of photos, & invests in stocks for the long haul.

Get Yorick Phoenix's newsletter

Almost there! Check your inbox and click the link to confirm.

Subscribe to Yorick Phoenix's latest writing to get it right in your inbox.