A girl just asked us to direct her to the nearest payphone.

Previously.

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17 Responses:

  1. jwz says:

    My suggestion was, "Nineteen eighty seven?"

    Jared said, "When it still worked, I never saw anyone use this phone who wasn't crying."

    • john_x says:

      Is it too much of a stretch to think that, along with quarters, perhaps despair was a key requirement to operating that payphone?

      • spoonyfork says:

        I'll say despair is a requirement to use any payphone. The last two times I used a payphone (both in the previous century) were out of complete despair. Miraculously it was a successful tool to get out of the despair event. I don't think negatively about payphones.. quite the opposite actually.

    • Both classic responses. Each of you received a gold star.

  2. pikuorguk says:

    My mobile phone's battery went flat in town once so I had to use a payphone.

    ... but I didn't know anyone's number to ring. They're all in my phone's memory.

    Payphones are those things you'll tell your grand kids about - "back in my day we had phones, in boxes on the street" ...

    • hadlock says:

      "Boxes on the street with enormous books inside! They had a list inside with everyone you wanted to contact, with instructions on how to contact them."

    • jkow says:

      Yeah, and we had to use them, because back when I was a kid we didn't have a phone at home. But calling someone with a payphone was difficult also, because most people didn't have a phone either.

      • antabakalj says:

        I used to think my dad was a luddite. A telephone came very late to our household. Dad just used to point at the phone booth across the street. He said that the ringing telephone was ruining his day in the office enough and that he did not need that kind of nuisance at home.

        Also, we didn't have a color TV until the soccer teams stopped caring for people with b/w TVs and began wearing colors with the same grey-value. That forced him to upgrade. I prolly don't need to mention that we were the last on the block with cable TV access (we moved and it was pre-installed in the new apartment).

        Ah, good times...

        • lionsphil says:

          "...the ringing telephone was ruining his day in the office enough and that he did not need that kind of nuisance at home."

          Sensible man, your Dad. Wish our answerphone could be configured to say silent until after someone starts leaving a message.

          • antabakalj says:

            I'd pay for one of those.

            • zenpsycho says:

              Here in oz I've got "Naked DSL", that is, internet, VOIP, and no "real" phone line. This service can be configured to take voice messages and email them to you. Combine this with the fact that most modern phones can be configured to simply stay silent, and most email clients can be configured to automatically check email regularly, and "PING" when new email comes in.. .and well, you have your wish.

          • pavel_lishin says:

            Yes, I too wish I could call your house and just start screaming bloody murder, terrifying you and your entire family at three in the morning.

            • lionsphil says:

              ...lucky you, answering machines already make that possible?

              My suggested modification would at least filter out the couple of rings you get from telemarketer's assisted dialers before they realise they've reached an answerphone and automatically hang up again.

              • pavel_lishin says:

                Well, I imagine that if you heard the phone ringing, and then your familiar message, the element of surprise would be gone.

                Anyway, the only people close to me with a landline phone are my parents, and even that has voicemail. Can't remember the last time I had an answering machine that randomly yelled into the air, and I certainly wouldn't want one now.

  3. spoonyfork says:

    It was 1992. I painfully dialed with a broken wrist the rotary payphone outside of a hospital in the upper peninsula of Michigan to call a taxi. 17 years later I rode past the hospital wondering if the phone was still there. My iPhone softly whispered into my ear, "Don't bother."

  4. g_na says:

    Why are there only nine keys on the phone instead of twelve?

    • jwz says:

      Because the keypad is punched in; it's about two inches into the hole. Also the handset is gone.

      Other than that, it works fine!