Harold Green butt dialed me at 12:30 am this morning. It startled me. Anytime the phone rings in the middle of the night, you immediately think someone’s in jail or dead. Or both. I was completely delirious – sick with a cold – dozing from warm bourbon & lemon juice (medicinal). I couldn’t seem to answer my cell phone, even with a dreadfully loud Adam Ant ringtone blasting directly beside my head. I knew it was Harold Green. He left no voice mail, but as my smart phone rang, his picture brightly lit the dark bedroom, as if he were the one bellowing out Desperate but not Serious. How on earth had I changed my ring to Adam Ant?
Maybe it was Chester calling for Lucy? Chester, Harold’s dog, lives in the neighborhood and has a thing for our oldest schnauzer. They like to hang out down the street on Harry’s porch. (Harry is not to be confused with Harold – two separate neighbors…) Harry is without a doubt Munger Place’s most interesting neighbor. He generously hosts a daily happy hour, weather permitting, for anyone who wants to partake, complete with true life tales of the union business and mafia entanglements. Oftentimes there are more dogs than people present. Chester and Lucy have a standing date nearly daily around 5:00 on Harry’s porch. Even so, he should know better than to call her at such a godawful hour.
Smart phones and caller id have certainly eliminated prank phone calling which was a favorite pastime of certain bored little kids in Arkansas. Terrible I know. We loved to randomly call people in the phone book, identify ourselves as disc jockeys with WHBQ, and ask the person who answered to sing the Campbell Soup song. They ALWAYS sang. Now, there is no way we sounded remotely mature enough to be radio personalities, but they always sang, hoping to win chicken noodle soup for life or something. Then we would giggle and hang up. Crazy hoodlum children.
When Mam-maw Tate died, we got the call in the middle of the night. “We lost Ruby,” Papa Homer said. What? How did you lose her? Why would you let a nearly 90 year old wander off in the middle of the night? It took us a minute to realize what he meant. Wee hour phone calls are almost always bad news.
Although we have become pretty good ‘acquaintances’, I don’t think I’m Harold’s emergency contact person. I don’t think I rank that high on his list. Not yet anyway. When I cleared my head, I texted him.
Me: Harold, did you call me just now?
Harold: No, but it seems my phone did. I don’t know why my phone felt the need to call you so late.
:)) Butt dialing. It happens sometimes. Stupid smart phones.
Adam Ant, “Desperate but not Serious”
Peggy Lee, “He’s a Tramp”