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I’m not the kind of person that really calls people. I’ll make phone calls; I’m not scared of the phone. Some people are, but I’m not. How ridiculous is it that we’ve reached a point in history where people can actually have a phobia of talking on the telephone?

I just Googled it. The phobia of talking of the telephone: telephonophobia or telephobia.

Anyway, back to why I don’t make phone calls.

I can make them for business reasons. We’ve also reached an age where making a business phone call is a perfect excuse to make a call at almost anytime of day (business day) and no one will get mad at you for interrupting something (at least not openly). They’ll either put you on hold or tell you to call back and that’s that. No harm, no foul. There’s no guilt.

Calling a friend on the other hand (and I may be the only one who feels this way) carries a certain amount of guilt for interruption. I hate that feeling of calling someone in the middle of the day, especially when I’m not particularly busy, or dare I say bored, and feeling as though I’m interrupting something because everyone else’s lives are busier and more important than my own. As if they’re always going to be in some big meeting or working on something important or standing in the middle of a library somewhere. I also happen to have very little faith in the people I have the potential of calling. Maybe it’s trust issues. Maybe it’s just knowing my friends. We’ve all been somewhere quiet or that calls for attention to something other than our phones, and that one person forgot to silence their damn phone. And it rings. Extra bonus points if it was a Britney Spears ringtone.

I hold a fear of being the person on the other side of that embarrassing phone call. The person making “Hit Me Baby One More Time” play out into the ringing (he he) silence.I don’t even want to know if there’s a phobia for that.

It’s really stupid and arbitrary in the scheme of things. There are wars and famine and death happening every day, and that’s what I’m worried about. But it’s something I think about. It’s a thought that crosses my mind as I’m about to dial those numbers. Or press the numbers neatly typed under their contact info, because honestly, who actually dials a number anymore? I can count on one hand the amount of numbers I have memorized, and that includes 911.

And sure, you can leave a voicemail. That’s not really the problem. The voicemail happens after the fact. The damage is done; it’s only insulting if you don’t bother to leave a message after that. Isn’t that worst? You’ve got a missed call (whether or not it interrupted something) and a voicemail, and once you begin to listen to it, it’s two seconds of nothing? Not even a butt dial’s worth of sound. Just silence.

This is why I prefer texting. Besides loving the written word much more than a chunky phone call (this is a blog after all, and if you’ve made it this far I think it’s safe to assume you at least feel a little of the same), it’s like skipping straight to the voicemail (unless the person forgot to turn off their chewbacca texting tone) and leaving a message that almost can’t be a blank message. Of course there are those stupid text messages where a person will hit the space bar and then send, basically sending an empty bubble, but that’s a whole different issue. A text message sits there and patiently waits to be responded to. The same can’t always be said about the person who sent the text, but I digress (I seem to do that a lot).

So that’s why I don’t call people. Unless I happen to know the person is not busy and I won’t be interrupting them in the middle of something (which is almost never because no one’s lives stand still anymore), I’ll just send a friendly text. And unlike with most people, I don’t demand an instant reply. Unless it’s an emergency text. We all know about those.

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