The Person on the Phone Line

(very short fiction story)

A lonely person picks up a rotary dial phone and calls a random number. A voice on the other end talks to them for an hour. They never tell each other their real names and just…talk.

Back then the system wasn’t too good. There were pops and crackles, fuzzy sounding voices between clear times. Still they talked about things. Why the world doesn’t look right, why their lives are not what they expected. Dreams, hopes, loves and hates.

They laughed, and almost cried too. Out of fear of “ruining it” they choose to never speak again. Thank each other and hang up.

Those were better days. People talked to each other. Shared ideas without fear, without passing judgement. People knew how to be polite, considerate, authentic… even tolerant.

This takes places in the 1970s, USA. Back then, we had rotary telephones in homes and workplaces. They were called a “tele – phone” because unlike a telegraph… it was SOUND.