I know people, usually women, who feel guilty if they aren't multi-tasking. Especially when they're on the phone. I cut them some slack, even though their end of the conversation tends to sound distracted and disjointed, with long pauses to answer questions that only require a simple YES or NO,
Usually they're taking care of kids at the same time, so I just chalk
it up, except when I hear a toilet flush. TMI thank you very much.
Could you maybe wait until we're finished our chat? Not that I
haven't tried to multi-task while sitting on the throne. Just last week
I tried brushing my teeth at the same time, thinking I might be ready
to go to work sooner. I don't know about you, but brushing a long time
makes me gag, so I found myself trying to spit toothpaste into the sink
from my perch on the porcelain. I missed, which meant my attempts at
multi-tasking took more time than the actual tasks themselves.
Last week, I was on the phone with someone who was getting dressed,
someone else who was wiping the mud off her dog's feet, a third person
who was pumping gas, a fourth who was at the drive up for
Why do one thing, when you can do two? Remember the woman who robbed a bank while talking on her cellphone?
My personal multi-tasking favorite is driving, talking on the phone and
putting on make up. I am the poster child for every annoying female
driver on the road, One knee on the steering wheel so I can do my
eye shadow, eye liner, mascara and lipgloss at every stoplight and in
between, while talking to what seems like no one in particular via my
earpiece. Sometimes, just for the thrill, I also eat a sandwich and
fumble for the chips at the bottom of the bag.
Multi-tasking on the phone isn't a
new phenomenon, of course. Nor is the range of tasks people choose to
do. I remember one languid Sunday afternoon spent under an old
boyfriend on his bed. He was, uh, taking me to task when the phone
rang. It was his mother calling for her weekend chat. He
couldn't just let it ring. He picked up the phone and actually held a
conversation with her, while finishing what he had started with me,
even putting his hand over my mouth when I started laughing at the
absurdity of it all.
Now that I think about it, to this
day I don't trust what men are doing on the other end of the phone.
Which may explain why the folks who invented Phone-O-Vision could never
get their idea off the ground.