First we talked. People moved away and then we shouted. Eventually telephones were discovered and we could call (though some still shouted). Then came the answering machine. A delightful device that took the worry out of leaving the earshot of one's telephone. Never again would you wonder if you missed an important call because you had to go to the store. Now a blinking light would assure you that the message had been captured. Cordless telephones were nice because you wouldn't have to miss a call or message while spending some quality time in the bathroom. Then came call waiting. The fear used to be that someone was trying to call you while you were trifled with some other call. We used to rush people off the phone saying "I'm waiting for a very important call". Caller ID was huge. Now instead of having to answer that annoying call while waiting for the important call, you could politely ignore, okay, screen your phone calls. The future really hit with the creation of the cellular telephone. With this device, an annoying person could carry on an annoying conversation at an annoying decibel at any location without fear of, well, loss of self-respect. No more would you have to miss a call. You could accept (and many people forget, decline) a phone call anywhere. It took the best creations, call waiting, caller ID and put them all in your pocket. (Eventually in your pocket. Have you ever seen the first cell phones?) There exists on these devices a program of some sort that actually records messages. It is like the answering machine's badass rebel grandchild. It is called voicemail. Amazing creation, this. If you somehow choose to ignore or miss a call, people can talk to this recorder and then you can retrieve it, play it back, and even call them back right there if you want!
But why the history lesson today, CP? It's the end of Pharmacy Month.
Because every day I get this conversation, excerpted from last week:
CP: Thank you for calling CP...
Really Interested Person: Hi. My name is RIP and someone from there just called my house?
CP: That's a question. Are you telling me someone called your house?
RIP: Is there something you need?
CP: I don't know. Did we leave you a message?
RIP: I don't know. I didn't check them. Let me listen to them and call you back.
CP: Okay. Because doing that first would have answered your question before you had one. Best you took the time to call me first, wait through my phone menus, ask for the pharmacist, wait on hold, then waste my time when all you had to do was play your voicemail.
Remember, you can give someone an education, but you can't make them take it.