Way too many telemarketers call our home phone. Way too companies think people still pay attention to the phone calls and messages on their home machines. There are only two reasons to call our landline — it’s an absolute emergency or we don’t like you or know you well enough to give out our cell numbers.
We also have two home voicemails. One voicemail is the recorder attached to the phone unit and the other is provided by the phone company. The phone voicemail alerts us of a message by flashing brightly until we’re bored enough to check. The phone company voicemail lets out a beeping sound whenever you pick up the phone to dial. We use the landline to make calls about once a year BECAUSE WE OWN CELL PHONES.
The voice is frail and she’s looking for Virginia and her name is Irene and she left this message on our infrequently checked voicemail and it’s over a month old. And now I’m wondering if she ever got in touch with Virginia or if she thinks her friend of 80 years blew her off.
Maybe there was an emergency. Maybe Irene needs help. Maybe she’s still alive, sprawled out on the kitchen floor, desperately in need of help. She’s sustaining life nibbling on the Werther’s Originals in her house coat and sipping slowly from the car dish.
I need to know she’s ok. So I redial the number on caller ID.
“Are you ok?”
“Yes. Who is this?”
“Ok good. I’m glad you’re alive. Listen, Virgina is dead. Don’t call here anymore.”