A few days ago I was out running some errands and suddenly I had a question about something that, while not “uber important”, I could have used an answer a hell of a lot quicker than I got one.  The reason for the delay?  I couldn’t find a public phone.

“Don’t you have a cell phone?”  you ask?  Come to think of it, yes, I do.  It’s sitting on a shelf where I put it when the last batch of minutes I bought for it expired without me having used even ten percent of them.


I have to explain something.  While I admit to being something of a technology junkie and because of that I wanted a cell phone for years, I don’t use telephones very much at all and certainly not enough to justify paying for a cell phone contract.  For a while I tried one of those Cingular “go phone” pay as you go deals but even then, I did not use the minutes nearly fast enough.  If I had continued buying minutes often enough to keep the phone active I would very likely have accumulated over $300 in air time by now.  Air time that I might *NEVER* use all of.  Therefore I let it lapse, turned it off and put it away.

I think telephones are a great convenience.  However I hate a lot of what they represent and make possible.  I hate having one ring when I sit down to dinner, only to find out it’s some stupid robot calling me to yammer on about some politician that I have probably never heard of and would not vote for if I had.  I hate having a collection agency call for the 950th time looking for the people who had my number before I did because they just won’t accept that I am not them.  I hate getting trapped on a call when the other party won’t recognize the fact that I want to get off of the thing.  I hate trying to understand foreigners with thick, indecipherable accents when I call nearly any companies tech support these days and most of all, I absolutely HATE talking on them.

In spite of all that, there are times when I need to give in and make a (hopefully) brief call to get or pass on some needed information.  The problem is that because of how little I use one, there is no point in me paying to keep a cell phone active, this means that I need to keep track of where the few remaining public phones are.

And make no mistake about it, they are very much a dying breed.  I for one will miss them when they are finally gone.  It’s bad enough that the classic walk-in phone booth was killed off over 30 years ago, now the public phone itself is an endangered species.

Seriously, I DARE ANYONE to give me one good reason why I should shell out $15 a month to buy minutes for a phone when I *might* use it for a total of five or ten minutes in that month.  Frankly, I don’t think you can do it.

Technorati Tags: never use, phone booth, I hate phones, cell phone, public phone, too expensive, phone

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