10 Reasons You Should Text Instead of Call!

31CULTURALSTUDIES-jumbo-v2I know, I know…. most articles have the opposite viewpoint of this one, emphatically claiming technology has gone too far and there are huge benefits to returning to real human interaction with real voices in real time. But here’s the other side of the coin err pay phone!

10 Reasons Why Texting is Superior To Calling!

  1. The “Just One More Thing-er” — Do you know anyone like this? After you’ve reached the conclusion of your conversation and you say, “Gosh, I really need to go now,” the other person suddenly remembers 26 CRUCIAL things they must impart to you. Let’s take the example of my mother…

Me: Oh! Look at the time, I’m going to be late to pick the kids up from school. Love you, Ma!

My Mom:  You better scoot then! Scoot, Scoot! But did I ever tell you I was almost voted homecoming queen at my senior prom?

Me: Uh, no mom, that must’ve been exciting. But if I’m late, the school charges me $1.00 per minute.

My Mom: Only $1.00? Have I mentioned that First American Bank charges me a $3.00 service fee every time I use another financial institution’s ATM machine.

Me:  Oh, that’s a shame. Bye bye!

My Mom: Yes! Bye Bye Birdie is opening at the Actors Alley Theatre near me. Why don’t we go see it?

Me: Sure Ma, get the tickets and I’ll reimburse you. But right now I’m gonna hang up!

My Mom: Hang-up!?? Ugh. Your father had such a hang-up about crying in front of other people. Did you know he never shed a tear in front of me? I certainly hope you don’t have that trouble, dear.

Me: (Sobbing) Mom. Pleeeeease let me disconnect from this telephone call!

2. Evidence! — With verbal calls, you have no proof that someone said something if they deny ever uttering it. With text? Just screenshot it and resend. Ba-Bam! Their text message is staring them in the face. Pass the salt because now you can make them eat their words.

3.  No Awkwardness! — Phone calls have three uncomfortable scenarios: A) Both people start to talk at once followed by both parties politely offering the other person the chance to speak first. This is also said simultaneously! B) Both of you run out of things to say at the exact same time and a lengthy silence ensues. C) You cannot hear the other person because their voice is garbled (or they’re a mumbler) and it’s embarrassing to have to ask them to keep repeating things so you just start agreeing with whatever they’re saying — and lo and behold, suddenly you’re a Trump supporter! Not happening with texting. None of this. Nada.

4. Non-Intrusive — Ever hear anyone request, “Would you mind not texting me during the dinner hour?” or “Bad timing on your part, your text interrupted some really fantastic sex!” And IF they can hear an innocuous notification during their “fantastic” sex, it deserves to be interrupted!

5. Clever Comebacks! — You have as long as you need to text back something witty. No need to think fast on your feet during a phone call or have second thoughts lamenting, “Ugh! Why didn’t I tell him to ‘Kiss my grits’ just like Flo from the old Alice sitcom?” (It’s like the difference between playing Scrabble at your kitchen table with an egg-timer versus Words With Friends online when you have all day to use your “Q” without any “U”!)

6. Tone Deaf— It’s much harder to decipher someone’s tone during texting. But this IS a good thing! No longer will you be subjected to your ex’s voice dripping with sarcasm on the phone. You’ll receive accurate information, minus the drip. And the same idea works in reverse, so use it to your advantage! i.e. You can say whatever you want (venting anger or resentment out of your system!) via text. When the person expresses hurt feelings or calls you on your sh*t, simply type, “My goodness, when they say tone gets misconstrued with texting, they’re absolutely right. Surely you knew I was joking?” (Note: If they’re like my ex-husband, they may respond with, “Please don’t call me Shirley!”)

7.  Efficiency! — Some of us hate all the details and niceties leading up to the main point. We just want to get in, get out, and get on with eating avocado toast. Small Talk is for Small Minds.

8. Multi-Tasking!– Talk about your time-saver! I wrote this entire blog while texting with my mother. What will you accomplish while texting your own mother?

9. Eliminates Annoyance: With text you won’t hear their gardener’s leaf blower or their children fighting in the background. You won’t hear them stutter/stammer, saying “Um” all the time or be subjected to their excessive use of the words, “like” or “ya know.”

10. Analysis: You’re in a new relationship and you’ve documented your entire text conversation. Great! Now screenshot it and forward it to your most experienced married friends for their insightful feedback. Be sure and ask, “What do you think he actually meant by his third sentence when he wrote, “I’m not interested in you romantically, so let’s just be friends?”

  • Bonus Reason #11: Rectify Regrets! — It happens. You’ve texted something you wish you hadn’t. Simply follow up the unfortunate text with, “My brother just grabbed the cellphone out of my hands and typed that last remark. You know what an impish practical joker he can be! Hehe.” Then find an emoticon that looks like something you would use on April Fool’s Day.

Readers: Do you prefer text or phone calls? Please tell me why in the comments below!

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NEVER Throw Yourself a Bawling Birthday Party! (plus Text Eavesdropping!)

Bowling or Bawling?   What's the difference  at this point in the game?

Bowling or Bawling?
What’s the difference
at this point in the game?

Disclaimer:  I admit it.  It was not an accidental typo.  But “Bawling/Bowling?”  Who cares.  I’m probably going to do both this weekend.   The bottom line is when you’re over age 10, apparently you should never plan your own celebration.  Even if you clearly state, “No Gifts.” And EVEN if you’re turning 50 and a previously scheduled surprise party was accidentally ruined.  Okay, okay, you ruined it by being too nosy (read HERE) but STILL.

Let me backtrack.  Here is the invite. photo-237 By the way, even though you can’t see the bottom part, it clearly says, “No children, please.  But Adults who “feel” like a kid are especially welcome.  Let’s just have fun!” Then it elaborates that it will be casual, food, drink, bowling and mentions “catching up with old friends – – walking down Memory Lane at a Bowling Lane.”  Clever, right?  I thought so.  Then I made the RSVP responses with bowling puns, which were rather witty too. (If i don’t say so myself.  Boy, when you kill that Inner Critic voice, you do become rather cocky!)  The RSVP card went like this:

RSVP PLEASE!

Yes!  (I’m ready to Roll)

Maybe  (It’s a Split, I’ll let you know very soon)

No!  (Can’t Spare the time, sorry.)

Now, a question for you.  Anywhere above, do you see the following response?   “I’m a Mystery Guest.  You will NEVER know if I’m coming, or if I even got this invitation at all.  Have fun.  That’s my birthday gift to you.  Because I know you need to learn how to give up control.”

Two days before the event and over half the potential guests are going with that.

That’s what you get for making your own party, I guess.

I also asked people to specify if they were bowling or just spectating, since I need to pay in advance for shoes, plus guarantee there will be enough lanes together. Simple question, right?  Here’s just a sprinkling of responses I got.

“Hmmm, I haven’t bowled since I was ten.  What a novel idea.  So whadya think?  Should I ??”

“What?  You want me to wear shoes that announce to the world that I’m a size 9?”

“Oy, Stephanie, Stephanie!  You know your Uncle Charlie can’t stand all that racket.  Will you at least be providing earplugs?”  (I didn’t even know I HAD an Uncle Charlie.  Let alone one with sensitive hearing. When did Aunt Carla remarry?)

“Yes, Yes, Yes!  Put us down for 7 bowlers.  Susie wears a kids size 2, little Mitchie an infant 8 (wait till you see how curly his hair got!)  and the teens will probably only bowl a couple of games; but hopefully you’ll provide video tokens, and they’ll amuse themselves.”  (You saw that one coming, I hope.  The moment you say “Adults Only, these kind of RSVP’s come out of the woodwork.  But if you say, “Bring the kids!” —  They hire a babysitter a month in advance.

My bursitis has been acting up when it rains. I’ll get back to you after the most recent weather report.”

“I was captain of the bowling team in high school.  You better believe I’m down for it.  I’m very competitive so hope your friends can buck up when they get mowed down.”

“I am really uncoordinated.  Will there be single men there? I guess I probably will try to bowl, but not if you invite that bitch, Tiffany.  She really gives me a bad vibe.”

“This is so funny.  It’s a costume thing, right?   All I can think of is Fred Flintstone and bowling.  I’m coming as Wilma.

“Hi!  Thanks so much for including me.  I haven’t ever told anyone this but I have a thing about putting my feet into places that other feet have been.  Therefore I will just come the last ten minutes or so. For the cake.  I get kinda queasy even thinking about all those people and their feet. But thanks so much for including me.  If I don’t show up, it means I got to feeling kinda defeeted.”

That’s what you get for making your own party, I guess.

Okay, ready for some nice phone calls?  Yep!

For a good time, call Little Miss Menopause!

For a good time, call Little Miss Menopause!

Ring Ring….

Guest #1 – –   Heya.  Making your own party, I see?  So what are you into these days?

Me – –  Huh?

Guest #1 – –   I want to get you something useful.  Gift card?

Me – –   Oh no.  Please.  I wrote “No gifts.”

Guest #1 – –  Yeah, yeah – – C’mon, everyone says that just to be polite.  Love that cute thing about, “Your presence is enough of a present for me.”

Me – –  I didn’t write that.  I just said “No gifts.”

Guest #1 – –  So seriously, what do you get a spoiled brat who has absolutely everything SHE could ever want or need for her birthday??

Ring Ring…..

Guest #2 – – Hi Stephanie.  It’s Oscar. You know since the divorce,  I feel kind of self-conscious going anywhere solo. Which of your single women friends will be there?

Me – –  Hey Oscar.  Gosh, lots of single people in general.  But let’s see.  Women?  Tanya and . . .

Guest #2 – –  She that stacked redhead?  The 38 Double D?

Me – –  Uhhh…

Guest #2 –  – Sorry. How about that woman who was your maid-of-honor at your first wedding?

Me – –   Cynthia?  She died. That was 25 years ago, Oscar.

Guest#2 – –  So send me a picture of Tanya, will ya? And what the hell, Cynthia too.  And could you invite that girl who sometimes babysits for you?  Whatshername?  Lisa?   And what about that other set of sisters who do everything together, you know, they go rollerskating, they sing, and then they’re always smiling for the camera?

Me – –  The Doublemint Twins?

Ring Ring. . .

Bowling Alley – –  Hi there, Stephanie.  This is Barb, the manager at “Roll ‘Em, Bowl ‘Em, Console ‘Em!” Just finalizing a few things so your party will be “pitcher” perfect.  We don’t want to “strike-out” with you. Get it?  Strike out?

Me – – Isn’t that baseball talk?

Bowling Alley – – Whatever.  So we have you down for 35 people in three lanes, one with gutters, a tray of spicy, deep-fried Buffalo Bruiser Breasts, Bowling-Ball Sandwiches, Quesadillas Queso Cuties, Knock-Em Down Dumplings plus beer and wine.  Sorry, we don’t name our liquor anything cutesy.  And it’s up to you to monitor your guests safety for driving home.  All on the Visa that we ran your deposit on?

Me — Hold on. Wait. Hold it.

Bowling Alley – – A lot to take in, ain’t it?  Oh and Every Saturday night, we like to play music and dim the lights.  Most Saturdays it’s Pop or Oldies, which woulda been good for you, seeing as you’re 50, huh?  But I wanted to inform you that this Saturday, it’s gonna be a mix of classical music and then some country/western by request.  Hee Haw!

Me – – Hold it. First of all, only three lanes for 35 people?  And what’s with the gutters in one lane?  Also I didn’t order anything called Bowling Ball sandwiches.  How do I know if a guest is too drunk to drive?  And I completely despise country/western.photo-235

Bowling Alley – -Let me answer all that, Little Lady, maybe not necessarily in that order, but just hold yer horses and we’ll get this settled quicker than a tick on a bucking bronco.  (Little Lady?!  This manager is also a female!  And does anyone else detect that this person seems to be lapsing into “Hollywood Cowboy Talk?”)  So Bowling Ball sandwiches are really meatball.  35 people in three lanes is nice n’ cozy like,  but if you’re worried, we’ll surely keep some of your guests in the parking lot and rotate them in when others poop out. Gutters in one lane was by request.  One of your guests called to say that little Suzie has ADD and gets frustrated easy.  Them the ones probably get drunk the fastest.  And they’re also the ones who requested the music.  But doncha worry your pretty little head off, Country Western grows on ya quicker than you can say, “Round ’em up for a 50 year old who’s hotter than a tater-tot on a smoky grill!”

Me – – Okay.  Subject change, please.   Don’t you have any healthy fare to serve?

Bowling Alley – – I recken we do.  We got your Ring-a-Ding Onion Rings.  That’s a vegetable. Add some ketchup and you’ll be keepin’ that Doc away for days.

Me – – I am so very tired.

Bowling Alley – – That’s what you get for making your own party, I guess.

And Finally . . .  the Text That I Eavesdropped On (as Promised in My Title)

And despite what you think about me, this was a true accidental eavesdropping!  There was a three-way text a few weeks ago (you know how that goes, when one person starts up a group text and then everyone can see everything anyone writes from that point on?)  I think they both forgot that’s how things were set up.

Friend #1 – –  Hey!  You going to Stephanie’s thing?  Can you believe she’s throwing herself a party?  So I want to wear my new pink short skirt, but do you think that’s too much for bowling?  Why’d she have to make it bowling – -that’s the stupidest thing I’ve ever heard of.  I’ve been avoiding sending my RSVP to see if Oscar might ask me out.  I’ve actually been avoiding her in general lately, she’s such a drag.

Friend #2  – –  Well, in her D-fense, she’s been really D-pressed lately.  But u can’t blame her.  Have u seen her i’s lately?  That’s why she keeps those sunglasses on.  Even her wrinkles have wrinkles.  Ha!  Also, u need 2 use text lingo, k?

Friend #1  – –  You’re so bad that you are good.  Oh well, we shouldn’t say these things.  Someday, we’ll be there ourselves.  But not for another twenty years, Right??   LOL.  LMAO.  ROFLBISF!    CU  L8ter  BFF!  Is that better abbreviations?

Friend #2  —  Yup! U R 2 cool.   Luv ya GF!!! xoxoxoxoxoxox

Ring, Ring

Friend #1 – – Hey Stephanie.  Sorry I’m getting your voice mail yet again.   Been trying to track you down forever, Birthday Girl. So excited that you’re doing this party for yourself.  You so deserve it.  And bowling!!  As soon as I saw that invite, I was like, “That is the best idea ever.  I am soooo there!”  And you look amazing.  Nobody would even think you’re 35, like me,  let alone 50.  I’ll be carpooling with Tiffany, so if you need anything at all, just let either of us know.  Can’t wait, Steph!  Bye!”

Alright, I’m not gonna say it again, but – – “that’s what I get for….”

This morning a package arrived on my doorstep.  With a card.  Wow.  My first birthday present even though I said “No Gifts!”

Stephanie – – Just a little something to thank you for always playing matchmaker. I told you it wasn’t necessary though. I knew the right woman would find me when she was ready. We’re getting hitched this weekend so I won’t be able to make your party.  Tell Cynthia to have fun without me. Bet she got fat anyway, after 25 years.

Happy Birthday,

Oscar

I opened it up.  A new CD.  “The Best of Country & Western.”  Naturally.

FOOTNOTE:  This work has major embellishments, name changes, menu changes, bra-size changes, and complete utter nonsense.  But there really is a bowling party.  I really am nearly 50.  And I really am tired!  Now don’t forget – – Friday at midnight (Pacific time) is the deadline to win either one of these prizes with two SUPER easy contests.  See this post for more.  Click here

I’ve Dropped So Many Eaves – – I Need an Entire New Roof!

photo-141
I know, I know…Awful Title. But “Confessions of an Eavesdropper” seems to be way overdone. And I feel the need to come clean, (maybe purge some guilt?) about my past transgressions before a certain consequential birthday hits me in March.

“Hello. My name is ‘Little Miss Menopause’ and I’m a Snoopaholic.” (No, I am not obsessed with Charlie Brown’s dog.) Unfortunately, I have listened in on so many phone calls, read so many diaries, pressed my ear to so many walls, and glimpsed so many text messages that even a 12 step program cannot help me now. Besides I’d probably just spy on my “Higher Power.”

Next Stop…Eavesdrop!

I believe this obsession started unintentionally, dare I say even innocently? Back when landline phones adorned every kitchen wall, and those phones had other attached phones connected to the same line (called “Extensions” for you youngsters) in faraway upstairs bedrooms – – where eavesdropping could easily happen quite accidentally. Well let’s just say if you were ten years old, listened to a certain radio station where you simply HAD to be the sixth caller when the DJ played a sound-clip of The Fonz grunting, “Heeeeyyyyyy” (so you could win tickets to the County Fair) you might suddenly snatch up the receiver and . . .and…. instead of finding out you’re going to the fair, find out your older sister is actually HAVING an affair.

“What was that? Did you just hear a click like someone picked up the other line? We better hang up now, just in case. I love you, Alan…”

Of course there was only one thing for me to do the next day….

And the miniature key was right in the little padlock!

“Dear Diary,

Today Alan kissed me and then confessed to being a married man. This is so Marsha Brady/Dr. Dentist-like! (Oh God! I had just watched that Brady Bunch episode with her last week!) He gave me a locket and told me to wear it under my blouse and never show it to anyone. But today I noticed my ten-year-old sister staring at the chain. (I had been staring at her boobs, wondering about my own.) She is so obnoxious. And fat too. Gotta go study, Diary… (Nooo! Right at the best part?) college finals are a bitch.

It’s Not Always About You. (Yes It Is!)

Wait, forget the affair. So now I was fat?? This was news to me. Obnoxious I knew, but how many pounds did I need to lose? That was the day I learned something very important. You never really know what others truly think about you unless you eavesdrop.

I’m not trying to justify my actions, but don’t most people do this sort of thing to dig up dirt on others? From that moment on, I just wanted to find out the truth about MYSELF. Make sure I was living in the real world. I was dying to know what else was being kept from me.

The next day I played at a neighbor’s house (twin girls a year older than me) and decided to try a little experiment. In the middle of playing Barbies, (nobody ever calls Barbie “fat” behind her back!) I excused myself on the pretense of needing to use the bathroom. I made sure my footsteps could be heard stomping down the hall, then silently tiptoed back to listen through their bedroom door.

“She smells like tuna.”
“I know. And she always wears her hair in that stupid fat braid.” Great, now my hair was chubby too.
“Let’s tell her we have a piano lesson and can’t play anymore.”

They should just have an “Evil Twin” lesson and call it a day.

Sheesh, this was a terrific week for my self-esteem. But now I was completely hooked.

I Was All Ears Thru The Years!

As the years passed, I fine-tuned my nosiness. When I was dating my soon-to-be fiance, we went to a party at his brother’s house so he could introduce me to some of his buddies and even his parents were invited. I was nervous but as the evening wore on, I seized the moment on their couch to sort of “drift-off.” Uh huh. I had a glass of wine. Hey, it could happen! And I was a good actress, earning high marks in Fake Sleeping 101.

“So….what do you think of her?”

Yes…JACKPOT!!!

“She’s pretty nice. I’d say she’s a slight improvement over Vanessa.” Vanessa? Who the hell was Vanessa? Don’t blink, don’t blink.

“But does she always wear her hair like Farrah Fawcett?” Man, I can’t seem to win in the hair department!

“Well Michael, I’ll say this – – If you’re really gonna propose to this one, make sure she knows I get Thanksgiving and New Year’s. Her side of the family can do Groundhogs Day and Washington’s birthday. Oh and I get Christmas Eve too.” A control freak future mother-in-law?

“Ma, she’s Jewish.”

“Really? But she doesn’t have the big nose.” An ignorant, anti-semitic, control freak future mother-in-law. No thanks.

After that, I got much more daring with my “detective skills.” Once in my thirties, after a horrible fight with my married sister, I got the idea to telephone her home but then not say a word when she answered. I figured maybe I’d get to overhear her using some choice words about me to her husband. How could it hurt?

She answered on the third ring, sounding like she’d been crying. Wow, I guess our fight upset her more than I realized.

“Hello? Is anyone there? Hello?! I can hear you breathing. Bitch.”

Silence. What juicy tidbit would I find out about me now? Maybe they think I’m a horrible cook, my kids are brats…or…

“Alan, why don’t you tell your Mistress to stop calling our home at night before the children are in bed.”

Silence. Wow. Talk about full circle. I sadly hung up.

Snoopology Technology!

But then came email. And text messaging. And Facebook. A veritable SnoopFest Smorgasbord.

In fact, it’s thanks to an unprotected password on my sister’s cell phone that last week I saw an entire text conversation about my big upcoming birthday that I mentioned above. (Okay, okay….I’m going to be fifty soon, blech.) And there’s going to be a surprise party. Or there would have been a surprise party. But now I know everything. Maybe I can pretend?

You’ll be happy to know that today I finally got my comeuppance. Unbeknownst to me, as I sat in the beauty salon, (I must’ve jostled my sweater pocket) my cell phone somehow stealthily dialed my sister. And can you believe she listened spellbound to my entire conversation with the manicurist, even overhearing me describe which dress I would be wearing to my own surprise party? And now, well now my birthday has been cancelled.

My name is Little Miss Menopause and I’m a Snoopaholic. Thank you.

PS. If I leave this blog right now, are you going to talk about me in the comments section??

PPS. Yeah, my hairstyle is still stuck in the 70’s.