Remember the 1970s? The excitement in your house when the telephone rang? That telephone which was plugged into the wall and was unmovable…. that the children in the house would run to and want to answer. That telephone which you would not be able to use if you wanted to connect to the internet via a dial-up connection from your home computer with the enormous monitor….
Over the next few decades, computers became smaller and more portable. Home telephones became cordless and in many residential and commercial properties, several handsets are now available for use in various rooms. Laptops, tablets and heaven alone knows what other technical gizmos are now available…. imagine being born in the 1920s or 1930s – how much change have people of that generation witnessed during their lifetimes?
In the 1970s, when people answered their ‘land line telephone’, they spoke to whoever the caller was. No-one really asked if it was a good time to talk. If it wasn’t, I guess you would not have answered the phone! But now, in the 21st century, I often find myself either asking or being asked, ‘Is now a good time?’ On numerous occasions, I am either told that calling back in an hour (later in the day, tomorrow or whatever) would be better or I ask the caller to do so. [Sorry Mr/s Conservatory Sales Person, Confession time: I clock your number and then do not answer your call in future.]
We live in such an immediate world – with emails, mobile phones, Facebook, Twitter, blogs etc. etc. – that we almost feel we might miss out if we don’t pick up the call. When given the option of speaking at a more convenient time, we’ll take it. But heaven forbid we miss the call entirely.
When is a good time? The caller – whether it’s you calling or receiving – will never know. But we are such polite people (well, most of us) in the 21st century, that we give people the option – progress is sometimes a good thing, I guess.
[Editorial note: if you are tired of getting annoying calls on your mobile, download the Truecaller app from Play Store on your Android phone – you can block numbers, tell Truecaller who callers are and everything! It’s awesome!]