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Hello? HELLO?! Answer your phone!

Do you remember a time when you would call someone on the telephone and one of these things would happen:

• It would ring and no one would answer

• You would get a busy signal

• The answering machine would come on and you would leave a message

Good times.

Now, thanks to that pushy Steve Jobs, when you do not immediately respond, you can expect this question: “Why didn’t you answer your phone?”

How much of a thing is this? It's a Facebook meme. That's how much of a thing it is.


In other words, if you don't answer your phone, you are purposely ignoring someone. It’s enough to make me pine for those simpler landline days when you could simply say, “I wasn’t home” or “I went out.” But with our phones permanently affixed to our bodies, everyone who calls wants - nay demands - that you answer.

This is especially true of your offspring. They called because they want to talk to you now, darn it.

But sometimes, I can’t, and they have tired of my normal excuses ­– I left my phone home; I left my phone in the car; I don’t want to talk to you because it always ends up costing me money.

So I came up with 10 responses that serve the dual benefit of being legitimate excuses and making the callers feel like jerks for even asking the question.

If you see any you like, steal your favorites.

1) I was going to answer, but I wanted to wait until the (pick one) dentist/urologist/proctologist was finished with the exam.

2) It seemed more appropriate to wait to talk to you until after the wake was over.

3) Is "Answer" the button on the top or the one on the side? Or the slidey thing?

4) I was in the men’s/ladies’ room and I refuse to become the person who talks on the phone while … y’know.

5) The people sitting next to me in the theater already seemed miffed that I was eating jawbreakers and blowing my nose during the play, so I didn’t want to make them any angrier.

6) Talking on the phone is so 2005. Next time, tweet at me.

7) I know I talk in my sleep but I still haven’t figured out how to answer the phone in my sleep.

8) I was in the shower. Aren’t I even allowed to take a shower?

9) Because it was a really good sermon and I wanted to see how it ended.

10) If you really want to know what your mother/father and I were doing that prevented me from picking up my phone, I’ll tell you. But I’m almost positive you don’t want to know.

Beware of that last one, especially with your children. After you use it once, they may think twice about ever calling you again.


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