I did a lot of growing up at my grandparents house and when it came to the telephone, it was like a trip to the candy store if I could answer it. But I don’t remember a lot of answering or being taught how to answer a phone because, like now, I’m allergic to telephones (I’m being silly). I never really got into telephones until my teenage years when I talked all the time to everyone. But that need to talk on the telephone played out and now I’m one of the few people who screens calls, calls back 2 days later, and is very good at cutting phone conversations short.
There are two people that shaped how I ended up this way. First my grandfather. I don’t think he ever liked the phone. And I don’t believe we’ve ever had a phone conversation more than 3 minutes. He’s all hello- how you doin- are you still in school-you’re not going to graduate until your my age-love you-bye…..in other words, he says hello, asks how I’m doing, cracks a joke, and quickly gets off the phone. And I love it. So when I was younger, I’d say hello, ask how they were, and then get the phone yanked out of my hand by an adult because I was ‘playing’ on the phone.
Then there was my mom. Chronic phone talker. Talking to girlfriends, my dad, aunts, and uncles, she is always on the phone. From here I learned that the phone can be used for more than just the bare minumn of conversation but could actually be used to better relationships and share things with people you may not share with them face to face.
Were their ever specific examples of phone etiquette taught to me? Perhaps. But I was always an observant child so for the most part I just watched what the grown ups did and copied that.