What people don’t know or if they already know, don’t seem to fully get: i don’t like phone calls. Not any. Well, okay, let me explain that a little bit: i don’t like unsolicited phone calls. I prefer phone calls treated as if they were emails: i want to know the subject beforehand. I want to know what i’m getting into before i get on the phone. It’s like reading a book without glancing at the back or inside cover, watching a movie without seeing the trailer or given a blurb of what’s (or who’s! lol) about to go down.
I don’t like phone calls because they tend to be too long—anything more than five minutes i don’t believe is necessary. (I have this same rule when it comes to meetings. Yes, plugging my ReWork review right now. Sue me.) The only time i don’t mind ’em, well, i can tolerate ’em, is when they’re from my job because then i know 99.5% of the time they will be work-related: a user is calling to complain, or a coworker has a quick question about something i just worked on or i know a fix for. That’s fine. There’s a long-standing subject already, even if it’s not always the same, giving me a general idea of what i’m getting into.
Caveat and/or loophole: these rules don’t really matter when it comes to my mother, father or grandma calling me, and if my brother actually has a phone, he’s on there, too, along with a significant other by default: usually if they’re calling, something is important or dire, which the latter i hope is rarely ever the case. If mother calls, depending on the time of the day, i worry right away, even if not full-blown panic, because i never know if it’s something tragic or bad that’s happened. Take for instance two years ago when i had just met my brother for some drinks, like literally within 30 seconds of saying, “Wattup,” mom called, shocking us with the news that our cousin was shot—it wound up killing him, the third person i knew that year to be murdered senselessly. These types of phone calls are dreadful. Don’t wish them upon anyone.
The uber positive or happy, ecstatic, i just won Powerball, or the utterly devastating, tragic phone calls are the categories that call for vocal communication—the emotions and urgency are needed. Everything in the middle can be sent via digitally printed missives—shoot, send me a telegram (do they still do those?).
Back to the unsolicited calls: when friends or frat bros or unknown numbers call me, i am prone to not pick up unless i know with certainty what the conversation will be about. If said number or person calls back-to-back, then i’ll pick up. I hope they send a text after the first call, however.
Phone calls get in the way of my multitasking: being on the phone ties my hands and mind up. I have to give said person pretty much my full attention. This reminds me of the scene in The Social Network when a lawyer asks Zuckerberg if he deserves Zuckerberg’s full attention, whereby Zuckerberg honestly answers, “No,” and only because he doesn’t want to “perjure himself.”
Another loophole is with a lover—no, wait. More than that: a potential girlfriend or someone i’m heavily digging—she gotta be heavy, man! (Lol.) The whole courting or whatever on the phone is cool—but i definitely am not for the high school-esque two or three hour or longer conversations. Not on the phone at least. Skype or OoVoo is a different story. I can still do other things at the same time. It all comes back to multitasking!
And you know what, ringing phones make my skin crawl; it irks the shit outta me. This reaction has to come from somewhere deep-rooted, probably because while growing up in my house my mother hated em, so i grew to despise them, too. The fact that once we got caller id i was wont to not pick up anything that wasn’t for me, so the phone would ring incessantly—i’d let the voicemail or answering machine get it. I guess that has managed to stick along for the ride into today’s realm. Definitely. Possible remedy for this? Google Voice transcription of voicemails is great, but, i don’t really use my GVoice number so it’s kind of a wash on that front. Oh, well.
So yeah. That’s it in a nutshell.
Safe bet when attempting to contact me: email, Twitter DM, Facebook private message or wall post, text message, anything other than a phone call. It’ll save time and be faster. Plus, it’ll lower the chances of me being in a dour mood while we converse.
You know who you are if you’re exempt from all of this, though. This post isn’t for you—but those who don’t know. Lol!