Tiffany’s mom has a group of ladies that she plays golf with on Wednesdays. We ate lunch before we teed off for the day. The ladies were a lot of fun and very nice. One of them began talking about never really using a cell phone because she had a land line. We got rid of our land line years ago. At any rate, the mention of a land line got me to thinking of the lost art of the prank call. Remember the days before cell phones, before caller ID and before *69? It was the heyday of anonymous phone tomfoolery. I felt like if I had actually stayed with Girl Scouting…I could have earned a badge in this skill…a big badge, on the front of my sash.
My gift was in my ability to create voices. I’m sure, in hindsight, my other voices sounded just like me pretending to be someone else, but whatever. In my mind, I was a nameless, possibly foreign, phone high-jinks aficionado. This was in the days way before Bart Simpson’s calls to Moe’s Bar. With a group of friends at the Aquatic Center, I was the master of the pay phone paging call. This is where you call a place and ask for someone to be paged over the intercom. The fun and hilarity are ratcheted up when you are actually at the place that is doing the paging when the shenanigans are afoot. Nevermind, that the people doing the paging could probably see us on the pay phone, hanging up, listening and then laughing hysterically, it was still top secret and fancy. “Could you please page Michael Hock…he goes by Mike.” Waiting. Waiting. Waiting. “MIKE HOCK, PLEASE COME TO THE FRONT DESK, MIKE HOCK.” Laughing. Laughing. Laughing. Dialing. Dialing. Dialing. “Could you please page Seymour Buts.” Waiting. Waiting. Waiting. “SEYMOUR BUTS, PLEASE COME TO THE FRONT DESK, SEYMOUR BUTS.” Laughing. Laughing. Laughing. Dialing. Dialing. Dialing. “Could you please page Mike Rotch.” Waiting. Waiting. Waiting. “MIKE ROTCH, PLEASE COME TO THE FRONT DESK, MIKE ROTCH.” Laughing. Laughing. Laughing. Swimming. Swimming. Swimming. And then the cycle of antics resume. Those were the good old days. Good times.