The land-line rings constantly in my house and no one answers it. My wife and I stopped answering it consistently years ago. We’d both gotten cell phones and most calls to the land-line were sales calls, political calls, the fireman’s fund, the police benevolence, and all sorts of charities and solicitations . You know, just a boatload of people and organizations wanting their perceived share of what little money we were earning. It had gotten so out of hand that we simply stopped answering it. Besides, most of our friends and family called us on our individual cell phones. I know we should have just gotten rid of the land-line; but tradition is just hard to shake sometime. We’d grown up with landlines. How do you part so easily with such an historic figure. So we decided to keep it. And of course, the phone company made the decision easier by bungling phone service in with WI-fi, long distance, and hundreds of other benefits that we’re not even sure we’re getting. But the bundle savings seemed like a great idea anyway, so the land-line stayed. No harm no foul, right? Except eventually we had kids, a boy in 2004 and another boy in 2010. The one thing that we didn’t consider in our unanswered land-line agreement is that kids learn proper phone etiquette by watching adults actually answer the phone. We’d forgotten how we’d watched our parents answer the phone countless times until the one day we’d finally gotten our chance. Can you remember the first time you answered the phone? How nervous and anxious you were, hoping you did it right? My kids don’t have that experience. The phone rings in our house and no one stirs, no one even looks in the phone’s direction. It’s just an object that makes a ringing noise on a fairly regular basis. When I was a kid, a ringing phone was an event. We’d almost fight to answer it. Now, it doesn’t even muster a look up or a glance away from the TV screen, mobile phone, or tablet. It’s sad really. My kids really should know how to answer the phone; but they don’t . And it’s all my fault.