"Life is about not knowing, having to change, taking the moment and making the best of it, without knowing what's going to happen next. Delicious Ambiguity." ~ Gilda Radner

Saturday, February 09, 2013


Carly Rae Jepsen's Call Me Maybe  may have been "infectious", but it in no way holds a candle to the telephone songs of my misspent youth.

That occurred to me this morning as I was listening to the late Jim Croce's all-time awesome 70s' phone-based ballad, Operator (That's Not the Way It Feels), via Pandora on my laptop.


It also occurred to me -- somewhat sadly --  just how old and outdated that back-in-my-day song of unrequited love is :

Operator (That's Not the Way It Feels) by Jim Croce on GroovesharkOperator, well could you help me place this call
See, the number on the match book is old and faded
She's living in L.A
With my best old ex-friend Ray
A guy she said she knew well and sometimes hated...

First thought: Wow...the guy needed an operator to place the call.

Second thought: Certainly no one jots down phone numbers on matchbooks anymore, they just enter them into their cell phone under "contacts".

Third thought:  Today, if he wanted to track down his old, straying girlfriend and he had lost her number, he would merely Google one of those people search sites and for a nominal fee get Ray's phone number and specific LA address, MapQuest Ray's sorry, girlfriend-stealing ass, drive straight to the front door and speak to his former flame in person.

Same with Johnny Rivers'  toe-tappin' -- albeit heart-wrenchin' --  60s' custody battle tune Memphis, Tennessee:

Long distance information, give me Memphis, Tennessee
Help me find a party that tried to get in touch with me
She could not leave a number but I know who placed the call
Cause my uncle took a message and he wrote it on the wall...

Last time I saw Marie she was wavin' me goodbye
With hurry-home drops on her cheek that trickled from her eye
But we were pulled apart because her mom did not agree
And tore apart our happy home in Memphis, Tennessee...

Today, if little six-year-old Marie had access to her mother's smart phone, the phone number would pop up on his smart phone, and he would call Marie back immediately (if Mom hadn't already confiscated said smart phone, of course). Or, had Marie been calling from her mother's land line to his land line, and he had Caller ID, the uncle would have jotted down the phone number, as well as Marie's message, on the wall.

Or maybe they would do what's best for Marie and do a little fam Skype.

Bottom line: Problem solved, father and daughter instantly reconnected, no need for sad, though rockin', song.

And again, no need for that long distance information operator.

(Speaking of operators and songs, my friend, Sherrie, and I, when we were just a little bit older than Marie, used to dial "0" for operator from the rotary phone in my basement after school and -- trying very hard not to giggle -- sing songs. Yeah, it was all fun and games till one day the operator demanded to talk to my mother, who was blissfully unaware of our downstairs shenanigans. I hung up on the operator and was more than a little dismayed to find she was still on the line when I picked up the phone 10 minutes later. I hung up again only to have that relentless operator call back, and my mom answered the upstairs phone. Busted!

Anyway,  call me old school, but I also gotta say that Glen Campbell's Wichita Lineman runs absolute wires around Soujla Boy's Kiss Me Through The Phone.

I mean, seriously?

Kiss Me Through The Phone by Soulja Boy Feat. Sammie on Grooveshark How could:

Baby, I know that you like me
You my future wifey
SouljaBoyTellEm yeah you could be my bonnie
I could be your clyde
You could be my wife
Text me, call me, I need you in my life yeah

All that, everyday I need yaAnd everytime I see ya my feelings get deeper
I miss ya, I miss ya
I really wanna kiss you but I can't...

She call my phone like
(da da dadadada da da dadadada da da..)
We on the phone like
(da da dadadada da da dadadada da da..)
We taking pics like
(da da dadadada da da dadadada da da..)

She dial my number like
(da da dadadada da da dadadada da da..)

ever compare to:

I hear you singin' in the wire
I can hear you through the whine
And the Wichita Lineman is still on the line

I know I need a small vacation
But it don't look like rain
And if it snows that stretch
Down South won't ever stand the strain

And I need you more than want you
And I want you for all time
And the Wichita Lineman is still on the line...

Ahhhhh...that Glen Campbell...what a crooner.

But I digress.

Bottom line: Indeed the times, they are a changin'. And the transformation stretches far beyond telephones and song lyrics.

While I am thankful for the speedy/instant/constant connection that smart phones and all the other accompanying latest computer technology now afford us, I find myself wary as well.

From speed dialing to butt dialing in seemingly the blink of an eye, and frankly, we seem to have lost sight of a couple of very important things in between.

Can you guess what they are? 

Stay tuned.

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