you may remember that my parents cancelled their landline. i was right to be bereft.
my reasons, however, were misguided. i saw this as the end of a golden age, a simpler time when i could not anticipate who would answer the phone and did not have to pick between my parents. little did i know that it signaled the end of something altogether more fundamental- my ability to converse with my mother and father on the phone.
the switch from landline to cell was much debated in the eaton household and eventually undertaken with great enthusiasm. but drunk on their excitement over all the money they would save, my parents never once stopped to consider that they never spoke in the house on their cell phones. and that there might be a reason for that.
thus, the age we've been ushered into has had a wealth of surprises. wavering signals. voices emerging from great depths at irregular volumes. plus a crackly background noise that unfailingly follows any indication that the thing said immediately after is going to be of great import.
my mother's phone does not ring inside. no one in the house knows how to put their ear to my father's phone without hitting every single button on its face. on the landline, my mother use to quietly click into our conversations. now, when my father passes the conversation to her, her arrival is preceeded by a deafening digital fanfare.
add to this the fact that every single conversation i have had with my parents in the last three months- no matter the length- has been punctuated by a minimum of three dropped calls and you can imagine we eatons are a bit on edge.
the other night, during my third attempt in ten minutes to relay the details of the yusha interview to my father, he finally had enough. we just can't live like this, he said. you are our beautiful only daughter, but on this phone you sound like jabba the hut.