“The Hang-Up:” And How It Influenced My Life!

For some reason I thought it would be cool. I think I heard one of my teenage brothers talk about once doing it. The motivation behind my “Hang Up” is still unclear in my mind, although I’m sure in the feeble mind of an 1st grader, it made perfect sense. So on an ordinary day after school I called up the most beautiful girl in my first grade class, named Wanda, and started a conversation about the book we were reading in school, “Run Dick Run!” In the middle of the conversation, I decided to do it. I hung up the phone right in the middle of our conversation. I don’t know what I thought was going to happen or what thrill I expected, but within minutes the big yellow phone on our kitchen wall started ringing. My Mom picked it up as I had gone to watch TV in the adjoining room. When she called my name I knew something was up, as I never got a phone call.

Well, it was Wanda’s Mom. She was nice but also very forthright in her message, which was, that it was not a proper thing for a boy to “hang up” on a girl. I stammered out “I’m sorry” and the phone conversation with Wanda’s Mom came to a swift end. The conversation ended but the lesson still lives within my soul some sixty years later; and that’s a good thing. You see, back in the day, you got called out for being rude. And your parents weren’t going to defend rude behavior just because you were their child. And excuses for such behavior were none. And I never hung up on another person to this day. And I’m glad Wanda’s Mom called me out. Because I learned that rude behavior has no defense. And that taking a stand on small things is important. Because small things become the patchwork of a person’s character.

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