When I was younger, it was very exciting to get a phone call. In fact, other than my birthday, I rarely received phone calls. At times, the phone was intimidating. I remember a Wonder Years episode where Kevin, the protagonist, is intensely deliberating calling a girl while he is staring at the phone. It seems to go on for hours, and is suddenly interrupted when the phone rings.
These days, email, text, and Facebook are many individuals’ preferred way of communication. People don’t want to talk on the phone. When the phone rings in my house, nary a move is made. Ultimately, we check the caller id and a decision is made as to whether or not to pick it up. I am convinced this reaction is typical. Yes, the phone call has gone out of vogue, its romance faded. In this, I am a throwback. I get a real high from a good conversation, enjoy hearing someone’s voice who I haven’t heard from in a while or who has something to share. However, sometimes what they have to share is not something I want to hear.
By this point the school year is two months old and the classes are developing a rhythm. Problems that were looked upon as adjustment issues are now seen as something more. If that’s the case, phone calls are made to parents to discuss. We parents hold our breath – no phone calls please. Well, this week we received the call, one we did not want to hear. We knew it was coming – the email announced it was coming. My wife waited for the caller id to announce the school official was calling. She took a deep breath before picking up the phone. I saw her smiling at the beginning of the conversation. You might think this would put me at ease, but it didn’t. It seems that $15,000 plus tuition for my son’s school ensures that school officials tell parents how much they love their kids as the first part of the phone call. I am convinced that the first thing new hires learn is that whenever communicating with parents, tell them how much they love having their kids as students. Well, the call went on for some time, and when my wife finally hung it up, she felt a sense of relief. Maybe, the phone call is making a comeback. However, I’m still reserving judgment.