“Can you hear me now?”

As part of my job at the hotel, I get to sit in a small room a little off of the gaming floor and talk to people on the phone. I actually like this because there usually aren’t as many people calling for reservations as there are checking in or asking questions at the desk. I don’t have to be standing up and sitting down all the time, and I mostly get time to myself in the relative quiet.

But I have noticed a few things that make my job harder. Namely cellphones and their ilk. Even a cell phone that is perfectly clear in all other aspects can still cut out at exactly the wrong moment in reading the credit card number and make me feel like an idiot and say, “Excuse me?”

But why should I feel like an idiot when I’m simply asking for clarity? It’s not like it’s my ear that cut out. But something about the way our society brought me up makes me feel like technology’s shortcomings are my fault and I should have been able to hear THROUGH the phone cutting out. Or, at least, intuit what the card number is so I don’t have to bother the guest in reading it again.

But the idea in any form of communication is clarity, right? That’s why spelling is such an important thing (and if anyone was like my cousin and quickly read my last post the morning after it was posted, I apologize…). That’s why the telegraph was such a miracle, and later the telephone. That’s why internet speak should be banned, but that’s a rant for another day.

I do find it interesting that, especially when in a political arena, if someone says, “Let’s be clear here…” they’re usually going to say something to cloud the issue. Is this a symptom of a lowering of expectations toward clarity? Or is this actually a cause of the muddling of society? Is it reversible? Or do we just have to keep trying to be as clear as we can be and hope our children are raised better?

Or maybe just remove all the politicians…


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