Saturday, January 21, 2012

Ring Me on the Telephone

The telephone...the source of so much wonderful comedy throughout movie and television history. The Petries on the Dick Van Dyke show and the Riccardos on the I Love Lucy show relied on the telephone for many of their comic stunts.

Who can forget the scene in Meet Me in St. Louis where Rose, the eldest sister, receives a call from an Ivy-League suitor all the way from NEW YORK?! During the call, they marvel at the modern technology of the telephone and how it FEELS LIKE THEY ARE IN THE NEXT ROOM (the caps are because they are yelling throughout the entire exchange about how it is EXACTLY LIKE they are one room away from each other).

Pillow Talk used the telephone to emphasize the sexual yet discrete and appropriate relationship between Rock Hudson and Doris Day.

Downton Abbey shows the butler Carson uncertain of how the new-fangled contraption works.

Today, the phone is still a useful source of movie plotlines but in a very different way and the ubiquity of the smart phone has made certain movie scenes of the recent past seem even more dated (for example, in Notting Hill  Julia Roberts enters Hugh Grant's flat to use his telephone...thank god he had that landline just a few yards away!)

I yearn for the return of the landline and the answering machine. I do NOT want to be reachable at all hours of the day via phone or text and I think there is something decidedly less charming about the sleek and slim design of the smart phones of today in comparison to the phones of yesteryear. Also, I feel as though the stories revolving around Smart Phone interactions lend themselves slightly less successfully to comedic timing.

For those readers in agreement (at least as to the charm portion of my telephone manifesto), I give you some alternatives....

Gold Handset (available in a variety of colors at

So even if the stories on TV have changed and the people in your real life expect to reach you at ALL times of the day, you can feel transported to a simpler time as you talk on your very modern phone.

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