All Forms of Communication Have Collapsed

03/05/2014 08:57 am ET Updated Dec 06, 2017


This is the phone I had in my room when I was a teenager in the 70's. Oh, there were push-button phones back then, but I had this old rotary one. I hated that it was pink, but whatever--it was a second line in the house, my own line! I know my parents gave it to me to keep me off the family line, and I know that I was privileged to have my own private number, but I think this pink phone ruined me for adult life in the 21st century because it taught me that communication was easy, simple and dependable. It isn't.

How many articles have you read about how no one replies to email anymore? Or how no one returns phone calls or RSVP's to invitations? You could wallpaper the Taj Mahal with those articles, and here's another one from me, you're welcome. It's like there is this Great Void that communication goes into but cannot escape. And it's no one's fault, everyone says, because people's inboxes are stuffed with inane correspondence and spam and needless/endless Reply All's. People are drowning so it's not about poor manners and we all need to understand that nothing can be done. Nothing! It's the gulag of infinite communication gridlock.

When your work depends on communication with other human beings, like mine does, this is the worst problem ever. Try to think of a worse problem if you want, but you can't. You can dash yourself against the rocks of injustice, but that will only grow the Void, because then you won't be answering emails or returning calls, and your own colleagues will find themselves in Siberia.

I used to mistake the chirping crickets of the Internet for societal excommunication. Now I hear them for what they really are--Purgatory.


A place of suffering. Definitely.

Just pick up the phone, people say! That makes sense. Hellooo, Rabbit!

Wait, what? Yes, yes, I will re-send that email. The Word doc is attached.

I'm sure I'll get those edits back any minute now. But in the meantime, I'll keep writing this blog post. I might check Facebook too.

Lori Day is an educational consultant and author. You can connect with Lori on Facebook, Twitter, or Pinterest .