It is hard to believe that there once was a time when we had to be reminded to use our phones. Of course, our telephones weighed 7 1/2 pounds in those days, were anchored to the wall and belonged to the one and only phone company in existence (“We don’t care. We don’t have to.”)
I read somewhere that Alexander Graham Bell refused to have a telephone in his office because he found them annoying. Mr. Bell was possibly the first businessman ever to have his secretary or some other underling make the call for him when he wanted to go fishing. Today’s busy man has his phone right there with him, all the freakin’ time, so why not call every day for an update on conditions?
Quill Gordon: “Bass-O-Rama; how can I help you?”
Anonymous Member: “Excuse me?”
QG: “I’m kidding. Neverwas Nonesuch Angling Society, Quill Gordon speaking. How can I help you?”
AM: “Hello, Phil. This is (xxxx). How’s the ice doing?”
QG: “It’s not much different from yesterday when you called and my name is still Quill.”
AM: “You said it was changing every day!”
QG: “My name?
AM: “The ice! You said the ice was changing!
QG: “Well, it is, but the changes are subtle. A hundred acres of ice and snow doesn’t go away overnight.”
AM: “How thick is it?”
QG: “Most places aren’t much thicker than a foot or so, but it’s getting pretty slushy.”
AM: “A foot! Look here, Phil, I have invited a group of my colleagues to fish on opening day and that ice had better be gone when we get there! I’ll call you again tomorrow.”
QG (After hanging up): Great.
It used to be that, in order to make your reservations, you had to actually sit down and write a note, put it in the mail and wait for a response. Using the telephone was not cheaper than sending a letter but it was a darn sight faster, as long as you could get to a phone and, if your destination was modern and up-to-date enough, you could use a phone to check in back home as often as you could afford to.
But there were some things you couldn’t use the phone for, back in the 1950s. For instance, the Aqua-Land Pet Company of Miami, Florida, operated by mail and for less than the price of a phone call from New York to Rutland, Vermont, they would send you a copy of their catalog so you could order your very own affectionate, heavily armed monkey.
(I would like to give a blogging tip of my hat (and direct your attention) to Moldy Chum for sharing their collection of vintage ads featuring fly fishing. They post a lot of other great stuff, too, but I’d love to find some of the ads they feature. I check out Moldy Chum every day.
Another blog I visit every day is Fishing for History: The History of Fishing and Fishing Tackle by Dr. Todd Larson. If you are into fishing history, check it out. Tons of information, deconstructed old ads and reviews abound, along with a great collection of links to other fishing history related stuff.)