Missing The Landlocked Landline

Why the landline was much better than the phone in your pocket?

Missing The Landlocked Landline
Image Credit: wsj

“Why are you partying so late? When will you be home?”, “Is that another girl I can hear behind you?”, “Please get some food on your way here”, “I have been calling since so long. Where were you?”, “Why could you not inform me? I was just a ping away.”

So many of us would have heard these lines, in various permutations and combinations. Now your girlfriends, boyfriend, family and boss, all know where you are all the time. They also expect you to be available on their beck and call.

Was not the world a better place when the landline was locked to one spot, and you could come up with a thousand reason to explain why you were not available. You could binge watch a movie series or you could read a whole book, without the phone in your pocket disturbing you, right when you are on a plot twist.

You also had to maintain a special diary with all the phone numbers. And you were required to memorise the number of your loved ones, making the relationship very special. School and college students would prove their love by showing that they know someone’s landline number by rote. Now people spend entire lives with the other person on speed dial and don’t have to memorise the loved one’s number. What kind of modern love is this?

Even Graham Bell would not have known that the boxed device he created would metamorphize into a device where love would be found on Tinder. No longer standing in a corner, trying to cover the mouthpiece with a hand as you whisper sweet words, trying to hide your love from those sitting around you or standing in a queue behind you. Even the phone booth was a special emblem of mystery and love.

Phone booths had so much mystery and romance around them
Phone booths had so much mystery and romance around them

Image Credit: phonebooth

Now, love is quick, on the go. Just type a message or give a missed call to express your feelings. Landlines remained loyal, unlike the modern cell phones that need charging and battery back up in return.

Landlines were a perfect synthesis. Rooted to a spot, there were more dedicated than the family dog. While at the same time, giving you freedom if you chose to be unavailable. Maybe the new phones are better to keep you connected, but they are no friends of the abstaining introvert.