Do You Remember… Life Before Cell Phones
Remember the old days when there was no such thing as cell phones? From home, you’d call up a couple friends – at their home – and made plans to go check out a movie or something. If they weren’t home when you called – oh well, too bad. And when they came home and were told that you had called them, they’d try to call you back. But if you left the house already, ruff-ruck.
Or remember when you were trying to avoid someone and you’d have another member of the house answer the phone for you and tell the person calling that you weren’t home? No caller ID back then. We had to use live screeners.
Or how about when you were out on a date? You didn’t have to worry about your date being interrupted by a ringing cell phone. Or text message alert. Or a bored date checking his/her Facebook page. Or an overzealous date posting pictures of the car, restaurant, food, drinks, shoes, bathroom, etc.
Remember when there were more than 1 car load of friends – like after a social or dance – and the 2 cars would be following each other around town? If somehow you got separated, then it was impossible to find each other. It helped to have a planned-ahead-of-time rendezvous point for such occasions – like McCully Zippys.
When we got separated, there was no chance of finding each other. It wouldn’t be until the next day that we’d find out what happened. “Eh, what happened to you guys last night?” “Well brah, if you never blast through the yellow light, we would’ve followed you”. “So, where you went? We was waiting for you guys at Zips”. “Zips!?! – we was looking for you guys at Ala Moana beach”.
I remember after we got married and our girls were about 4 and 5 years old, shopping meant everyone hanging out together. If we had cell phones back then, I could take the girls somewhere while Paula shopped on the 3rd floor of Liberty House. But we didn’t have cell phones then. So it meant that when Paula shopped at Liberty House – we all shopped at Liberty House. Me and the girls knew exactly where all the chairs were in the store. And we would race to grab the available seat.
Then later as the girls got older, we did the “Okay, meet back at the ‘nook’ next to the escalator in Macy’s at 3:oo” (it was no longer Liberty House by then). Then I could go looking at electronics and tools in Sears while the girls shopped at Claire’s and Hot Topic, and Paula shopped in – you guessed it – Macy’s.
When cell phones became available, but they weighed 4 lbs, held a charge for only 5 hours (stand-by), and cost $3.50 per minute – we went with the poor-man cell phone:
Yup, Motorola personal walkie-talkies. They only worked as far as half of the mall at a time and caught mostly only on the mall level – sometimes on the street level – but they served their purpose. I must’ve looked dorky wearing that thing on my belt…
I must say though – before cell phones, it was much easier to ice out someone. And you didn’t have to worry about them trying to find you.
I wonder how today’s kids would react if we told them that in our day, we had only 1 phone that the whole family had to share. And the phone couldn’t leave the house. And you couldn’t walk around the house with it. You had to sit by the telephone base and have your conversation – even if everyone else could hear. And if you stayed on the phone too long, you’d get scolded. And it was only good for voice communication. They probably wouldn’t believe us.
Do you wish we had cell phones when we were growing up? Or are you glad we didn’t have cell phones in our day? Where you one of those who waited until later in life to get on the cell-phone wagon? Or did you jump in early? If so, who was your original cell-phone carrier? Me, I had Primeco, which later turned into Voicestream, which later turned into T-Mobile. Can you imagine how different things would be going on a date nowadays with cell phones?
Edited: Thanks AnkleBYTERS for sharing this picture of a Vette with a CB antenna. I forgot all about the CB craze in the 70’s.