2017-07-26 / Editorials

Don Lively


Remember last week?

I told you that I really don't live in the past regardless of what my writing repertoire normally reflects.

So, what did I spend a large part of the past week doing?

Living in the past, naturally.

I didn't intend to. I already knew, or thought I knew, most of what would appear in this week's scribblings.

But then the week happened.

Here's a brief synopsis.

Over the past month my cell phone provider's service has gone from terrible to practically non-existent. Additionally, I've recently spent somewhere between six and eight hours either on the phone or at the provider's offices taking care of things that they claim can be done with a simple phone call. It feels like beating my head against a wall. I was finally advised to contact a "liaison" with the company to work things out. I was overjoyed when that person texted me that he would "definitely" call me that same afternoon.

That was three days ago and I have yet to hear from him.

It gets worse.

Because the cell service is so bad my new bride and I decided to reach into the past and get a home telephone. A landline, in today's terminology. I contacted the local home service provider and after a relatively easy conversation and set up I was told to expect a dial tone in 48 hours. 48 hours came and went. Then 72 hours. After four days we called back and were told that there was a problem and that it would be another week and a half. I know for a fact that there's already a line into the house because I had it laid when I built it. What could possibly take two weeks?

Here's the capper.

I've been in contact with a person who owns property locally. We are working together on a downtown project. The person lives in another state and it's been a little difficult to link up so we made plans for that person to call me on Saturday, at a certain time.

Never heard a word.

So how does my little whine fest tie into last week's theme?

I remember a time when a person's word was his bond.

Trust me, I know how corny that sounds, but it's true. If somebody told you that they would arrive or call or provide a service at a certain time, they did so. Or, at the very least, they would call to explain why there would be a delay.

In every one of the above described three situations, nobody called to reschedule.

Just left us hanging.

I would like to go back to a time of reliability and prompt, good service.

I would also like to live in a world with less cussing.

Now I'm not going to lie to you and tell you that I never use bad language. I'm human, just like you. But just this week I sat in a very nice restaurant with an old friend and heard people using words that would have caused Daddy to slap me so hard my descendants would be cross-eyed had I uttered them.

Remember Gone With The Wind?

Clark Gable/Rhett Butler shocked the world when he told Vivian Leigh/Scarlett O'Hara that he didn't give a damn.

Have you been to a movie lately?

The language is so raw and nasty that it's really hard to watch.

Rhett's expletive was mild by comparison.

It's on my horizon to write my long-thought-about novel but I'm not sure you can write books these days that anybody would read that don't have hundreds of cuss words and graphic sex scenes.

I don't come within a country mile of being priggish but I would like to see us return to a time of civility and dignified conversation.

Speaking of conversation, I would like to have more of them.

Seems that I do a large part of my work and business by text message or email. Folks who will almost never answer their phone will email back or text almost immediately.

Have we forgotten how to have voice to voice communication?

There's more.

I would like to stop paving roads. We have quite enough blacktop and not near enough dirt roads.

I would like for "experts" to stop telling me all the bad stuff about what I eat and drink. I'm intelligent. I'm aware. Leave me alone.

I would like more newspapers and fewer blogs.

More Southern Humor and less political ranting.


See you right back here next week.

Don Lively is a freelance writer and author of two books of Southern Humor, Howlin' At The Dixie Moon, and, South O' Yonder. He lives in Shell Bluff. Email Don at Livelycolo@aol.com.

Return to top