Friday, April 22, 2016

R for Redial

I dialed her number and waited. There was the long screeching "engaged" tone that had been bothering me for the past half hour. Cursing all and sundry, I slammed down the blood red phone and waited. Exactly 9 nanoseconds later, I dialed again.

Are you a millennium child? As in, not a millennial, which google informs me is "the cohort spanning children born between the 1980s and the early 2000s". Are you a millennium child, one that was born when I was at my adolescent best, or worst? For you, this will be a nice, new post that oldies reminiscence about, stuff that you can safely include in your ancient history curriculum. For the rest, well, let's revel in some nostalgia.

As a school kid, I was an extensive user of the dial-telephone. We had a red one at home similar to the one in this pic. 
Image result for red dial telephone
And, I used it under the ruse of homework discussions, a fair bit. Hey, really! I was a diligent kid, having lots to discuss about my math and science homework, and the ghost house next door to school (our own little fairy tale-ish gossip) with my best friend. And my friend used the phone even more extensively than I did, so much so that I was faced with the situation referenced at the beginning of this point quite frequently. My fingers would feel wobbly and sore after the many redials, and I would be ready to throw something at someone, at which precise moment, she would call me back, as if on cue, the red telephone shrilly announcing her re-entry into my life. Was it telepathy, I wonder now.

For, we did not have basics like punch keypads and redial buttons, let alone advanced tech like call waits. And, I am not missing the lack of them. No, that's a lie. I miss the lack of call waits and call logs. Now, there is so much evidence of a call received that I cannot really say, "Oh! You called? I never received it." Sometimes, to hell with technology. 

I don't think we have the telephone with us anymore, what with my mother's obsession with throwing out anything old and useless (which gene she has promptly passed on to me). I keep telling her how we have lost that one chance to make millions (or billions, basis inflation) in the decades to come, passing it off as "precious antique furnishing". While that ship has sailed, I have implored her to keep the typewriter and the ammi-kal well and happy, because those might just make up for the loss of revenue from this one!

P. S. This post is the eighteenth in the A-Z blogging challenge series for April. 

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