Stupid phone.

9 11 2010

I am waiting for the phone to ring. That’s inaccurate. I’m waiting to hear someone’s voice. But it will probably happen right after the phone rings and I answer it. So by proxy, I am waiting for the phone to ring. There is an air of desperation in this desire. I’m not happy about it. I’m not proud of it. But it’s there.

Did it ring on that end? No idea. It did not ring on this end. Just straight to voicemail. OK, so it’s windy. Reception is poor. This is not unreasonable, I guess. Crappy, but not unreasonable. But here’s the thing about waiting for the phone to ring. You keep glancing at it, hoping to catch it right when it lights up. You keep it on you constantly, until you start to feel silly. So you leave it on the desk and go in the other room. But for the next 20 minutes as you eat voraciously because, let’s face it, liquor just doesn’t have the filling power you’re after, you keep hearing phantom goddamm rings! You keep looking up pathetically from your food, wondering if that particular inaudible squeak was the sound of the ringtone drifting through the background noise of the house, the tv, the dog, your own jaw moving.

It’s not. It never is.

So you sit down beside the phone instead, defying its presence. You ignore it. You dare it to ring so that you can demonstrate how much you do not care when it doesn’t ring. Sitting in the same room with the phone you play a game with yourself, to see how well you can pretend your entire emotional state is not based entirely on whether or not it rings.

You struggle mightily, angrily, violently to convince yourself you actually do not want it to ring, and would be annoyed and upset if it even did ring at this point. You build walls and bastions solid as the foundations of the Earth, and when you are finished, you are certain that there are no circumstances under which you could believe those walls would hold.

The worst thing about waiting for it to ring is the knowledge that no matter how much you need it to ring, it isn’t going to. They’re not going to call. Precisely because you care so much, it’s never. Going. To ring.

You get angry with yourself for caring so much, and then angry with yourself for trying not to care, because if you don’t care, never care, at all, than what is the point of any of it?

And what if it didn’t even ring on that end in the first place? What if there’s some perfectly reasonable explanation for all of this? Then you’re neurotic at worst, at best an asshole.

There is no way to win this contest. Choose your flavor of loss.

Settle back, defeated at every turn, certain of the outcome.

And stare at it, waiting for it to ring anyway.