Just As I Thought

Ahoyhoy


There it is, my new old phone and my old new phone. 1937 meets 2007. A meeting of two eras; circa the year my house was built and today.


There it is, my new old phone and my old new phone. 1937 meets 2007. A meeting of two eras; circa the year my house was built and today.
I picked up the phone on eBay, trepidaciously because I’ve been burned on that particular free-for-all before. I bid on several but was always outbid at the last moment by literally a hundred dollars each time — so winning this one for less than half a c note was cause for worry. But surprise, it arrived intact. Once I puzzled over the bizarre wiring and a conversation with my phone installer stepfather, I wired it up to the wall and lo, communications, Plain Old Telephone style!
The ringer is really loud.
Of course, I am old enough to remember rotary dial phones, unlike many of you youngsters reading this; what I didn’t remember was how freakishly long it takes to dial a number. Especially long distance.
And it is very telling that one can just hook up a 70-year-old telephone to the 2008 network and it works. This is both evidence of a simple but brilliant invention; and an indictment of how little the telephone company has changed in more than a hundred years (while still charging us more and more and more).
I replicated the center number disc with my own number on it; turns out that my exchange is properly “BIttersweet 8”. I love that.
I have an irrational, bizarre urge to lay on the living room floor, paint my nails, and yak on the phone with Ethel.

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