Last week, Ken and I decided to get rid of our landline. We both have cell phones, and no one EVER calls us on the landline except for telemarketers. At first it was fun toying with them:
Telemarketer: Good day. I’m Sanjay, and I’m calling with an exciting offer to clean your ducts.
Me: Well, I don’t have any ducks, but I DO have a very dirty goose. Do you think your company can handle that? He gets a little hissy with strangers and might poop on your agent.
Telemarketer: Pardon me?
Me: Is the shampoo bio-degradable? Does it contain sulphates or is it like the stuff they advertise on TV when they have to rescue birds from oilspills?
Telemarketer: (*hangs up*)
After a while though, it gets boring:
Telemarketer: Good day. I’m Sanjay and I’m calling–
Me: It’s an open concept house. No ducts. Goodbye.
In fact, the last time an actual person I know called the house, it was over a month ago:
Dad: Were you exercising? You sound out of breath.
Me: Good one. No, I was RUNNING FOR THE HOUSE PHONE. You know, my cell phone was right next to me.
Dad: Oh, ha ha. Anyway, I was calling for Ken.
Me: He’s out right now, sorry.
Dad: Well, when he gets home, can you ask him–
Me: Why don’t you call him on his cell phone and ask him yourself?
Dad: Oh, I, er—I don’t think I have his number.
Me: It’s 555-1236.
Dad: That number sounds really familiar.
Me: Maybe because it’s Ken’s CELL PHONE NUMBER.
Dad: No, I think it was a year.
Me: Like a year in the 13th century? Maybe it was a really bad year.
Dad: It was the Middle Ages. Presumably, they were ALL bad years. Anyway, I’ll call Ken myself.
Me: Are you going to call him on YOUR cell phone?
Dad: Oh, I, er—I left it in the car.
So most of the time, the house phone sits idle, and between the cost of the phone itself, the line to the house, and the long distance plan that costs up to $10 a month in service charges even though we no longer call anyone long distance, and the fact that we both have cell phones, the whole thing seemed kind of pointless. So I called Bell. I had to call them on the landline because I have a company cell phone with Rogers and I didn’t want to seem disloyal. Which is good because they put me through to their “Loyalty Department”. I explained to the woman what I wanted, which was to get rid of the home phone but keep the line for our satellite and internet because we live out in the country and have to be hardwired to everything. She was very sweet and understanding:
Bell Rep: I understand. You want to get rid of the home phone because you both have cell phones, am I correct?
Me: Yes, that’s right.
Bell Rep: Well, I can certainly do that. It just concerns me though.
Bell Rep: Well, if you ever have to call 911 on your home phone, the police and ambulance will automatically have your address. What if you call 911 on your cell phone and you’re too incapacitated to tell them where you live?
Me: Isn’t what you’re describing a ‘worst case scenario’?
Bell Rep: Possibly, but—
Me: You had me at ‘911’.
I talked to her for a little while longer, then I got off the phone and found Ken:
Ken: Did you cancel the landline?
Me: Don’t be silly. Picture this scenario—I’m alone in the house and I’m having a heart attack, but I’m too incapacitated to tell the 911 operator where I live. I could DIE, KEN!
Ken: Okay, so we’re keeping the landline?
Me: Obviously. Also, a guy is coming tomorrow to install our new high speed internet. But we’re getting a discount on our movie package because we’re such good loyal customers. I think it will all balance out.
And now I have to cancel our long-distance plan. Wish me luck.