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Carol Perkins: The telephone is ringing

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By Carol Perkins

You can count on the phone (landline or cell) ringing at the worst possible times. For instance, the minute you step in the shower, it will ring. The minute you go to the bathroom, the phone will ring. Never fails. The minute I go outside, the phone rings. You can also count on the phone ringing when you sit down to eat. The fork is usually headed toward that first bite, and it will ring (the landline). If you go to bed early, the phone will ring. If you sleep later than usual, the phone will jar you awake. "Were you asleep?"

If you have company, the phone will ring at least once. If you ignore the call, the party will worry about why you aren't answering, so they call again. If you're a passenger and the driver answers the Bluetooth attached phone and launches into a conversation that lasts all the way to Bowling Green, you might as well be alone.

When you are in the middle of a meeting and forget to turn off the cell phone, you can count on it ringing. Everyone stares. When a phone rings at church, I've often thought how funny it would be if the preacher asked if God was calling, but some might think that blasphemy. You can also count on those who answer their phone at a restaurant talking loudly. During a manicure, someone will ruin the relaxing moment. It never fails.

One of the most uncomfortable moments with my cell phone happened at a funeral.

Years ago, when you turned off your phone, a shutdown noise was worse than the ringing. In the middle of the family eulogy, I remembered my cell was not off. What should I do? If I turned it off, everyone would hear. I could sneak out, but all heads would turn. I could wait and hope. I waited and no one called. I now turn my phone off before going into quiet zones.

Ringing phones have become so common, I don't think anyone pays attention to appropriate or inappropriate places. Recently, two of my friends visited, and one of them was talking to someone in Louisville. The other lady, who was not in the same room and didn't know her friend was talking on the phone, began to answer her. I said, "She isn't talking to you; she's on the phone."

The reply was, "Of course, she is." Many people are addicted to their phones. I am not one of them. If I miss a call, I can wait. As Guy says, "They'll call back."

Carol's most recent book, based on a true story, The Case of the Missing Ring, is available through Amazon, both paperback and ebook. You can contact her at

This story was posted on 2021-06-25 19:05:34
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