Phones (the voice-communication device kind, not the multi-purpose pocket computer type) are really a strange kind of concept to me. The phone can ring at any moment, it usually makes a very shrill, unsettling sound, and there is no availability indicator to the calling side (apart from "line is busy").

People expect to just be able to call one another out of the middle of nowhere. And the callee is expected to pick up, right? At least if they don't, the phone continues to make a very annoying sound for a very long period of time. (Of course, my smartphone can notify me in a less painful way, but still the stress of the urgent, time-limited notification remains.)

A notification even in the form of "I would like to speak to you in three minutes" would feel much less threatening to me.

Is this a generational thing? Am I too young to have internalized that this is the way we communicate in corporate hell? Does my parents' generation have phone sceptics like me (doubtful, since they had no real alternatives that were quite as quick)?


Or is it because I learned to read and write so early in my life (with 2 or 3 years) that I have a much stronger affinity to written communication than most?

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