Friday Five

1. Do you like talking on the phone? Why or why not?

I hate when the phone rings, because it’s usually a creditor, but when it’s a friend, I love it to death. Especially now that I am 250 miles away from a lot of the people with whom I used to spend every day of my life, their voices always sound so comforting and familiar.

As far as work, again, every time the phone rings, it’s somebody wanting me to do something for them, which means more work. Yippee. But then again, I’d rather just get the conversation overwith live and in person, because people call back immediately after leaving a message, just to see if I got the message as well as to find out when I’m working on it. And also with doing interviews over the phone, while I do doing e-mail interviews, phoners are easier because I have the information already in my head and can map out the future story much better, because I hate reading boring stuff and trying to re-arrange it.

2. Who is the last person you talked to on the phone?

Shannon and Mom, of course, and daily, at least. But then I got a curveball earlier this week when I heard from a very dear old friend, whose voice I always enjoyed, so that was memorable enough to mention. 🙂

3. About how many telephones do you have at home?

None. Just the cell now.

4. Have you encountered anyone who has really bad phone manners? What happened?

When I supervised the little illiterate, known as Incoherent Twit, at my last job, we had to meet to discuss her phone demeanor. She would crack gum in your ear, lose her train of thought, change the subject to tell me whatever she just saw in the Spiegel catalog, and use bad grammar. She would also set appointments to meet people, just to get them off the phone, and never write it down, so those people would hunt me down, looking for her at their assigned meeting time, only she was nowhere to be found.

Then, just in general with others, there are the assholes who cough or sneeze into the phone — it’s as disgusting having them doing it in your face. It only takes a half second to cover the receiver or their mouths, or even to pull the receiver away from their mucous-filled faces for a moment, but many people just don’t consider that you don’t want your eardrums blown out.

5. Would you rather pick up the phone and call someone or write them an e-mail or a letter? Why or why not?

Depends on the person. With creditors, I send letters. With family, I call because they don’t have e-mail, and there are some days when I wish I could simply drop a two-line note instead of having to wait for the answering machine to pick up and then talk till somebody in the house picks up the phone. With e-mail, at least we can all write at the moment a thought occurs to us, but with the phone, we can riff off of each other and share the moment — I always tend to remember my live conversations much more fondly than those over e-mail or instant messenger — people type only what they want you to know — but their voices can’t hide much of anything.

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