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Claire (loquacity) wrote,
@ 2002-12-11 23:48:00
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    Fast forwarding through her messages hoping to hear from old boyfriends who finally realize the treasure they've thrown away.

    I remember when I was in college before ('95-'99), very few people had cell phones. In fact, I can't think of one friend who did. The people in my circle of friends only started to get cell phones after we all graduated- perhaps they were too expensive before, I don't remember. Now I look around on campus and everyone has a cell.
    My second year of college was the first time my roommates and I got caller id. Setting up the new little box next to our phone was an important event. Every day when any one of us arrived home, we would rush to the caller id box to check whether 'he' had called (or anyone else of lesser importance).
    Quickly, I noticed that some of the fun in my life had been taken away. Although I now knew who was calling before I picked up the phone (handy if it was your current obsession, as you could answer in your 'sexy independent voice'), you also knew when he didn't call. There were no more excuses- he obviously wasn't interested. This little box also caused other unforeseen problems- once you got caller id, you quickly realized that others probably had it too. Gone were the days when you could call just to hear that boy's voice on his answering machine. Now, if you called, you had to leave a message on his machine because he would know. And you could only call once and hope for the best.
    Of course, you also could easily find out who was stalking you. Your roommates would laugh with you at that boy who would call and call, who couldn't take the hint. This laughter was bittersweet, though- we all had been that one with the crush who couldn't seem to give up, and we knew we would be again.
    I now don't have caller id- I would probably not even have an answering machine on my home phone if my roommate hadn't set it up. Everyone knows my cell phone number- I actually only use my home phone when I'm out of cell phone minutes. My cell goes with me everywhere, warm and secure in my pocket. The melody it plays when it goes off (currently 'Fur Elise') gives me a certain thrill- someone wants to talk to me. I am liked. Yet while it's comforting to know that I can be reached and reach anyone practically anywhere and anytime, there also comes with it the same problems I had with my caller id box. Those days or nights when noone calls, when I check my cell to make sure I didn't accidentally shut it off. If a call means 'I am liked', then no calls must mean 'Noone likes me'.

    Do I really gauge my self-worth on phone calls? No. I just think that some of the mystery and anticipation is gone. But there's no turning back- I'll never give up my cell. If I did, how could anyone reach me?

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