It was 1983. I was staying home for the first time in my life, bringing up baby. We had one phone, attached to the wall. When you talked on the phone you were limited to, um, talking on the phone. Your options were sitting or standing.
It was BIG excitement to get a long cord! Now I could clear the table, pick up toys AND talk on the phone. There were daily calls with Kathi, another young mom. Our conversations ranged from our son’s latest schedule change to the man who picked his nose—and studied the results—during church to Gorky Park to Jazzercise.
Through the phone my oldest sister walked me through the dilemmas of motherhood and listened with patience and delight to my momentous pronouncements. He stared at me for two minutes without blinking! Like my lunches with my mom when I was in kindergarten, I had a need to narrate the current events of my life, give my commentary, consider and then demolish any imaginary criticism. When my thoughts had been downloaded, when I had been heard, we could comfortably end the conversation.
That cord would s-t-r-e-t-c-h almost to the kitchen sink. I learned to station the diaper bag within range so the conversation could carry on amidst messy diaper changes.
When I hung the phone up, the long cord spiraled into a double helix.