A Daunting Delivery

Yesterday I posted a riddle on Twitter and Facebook: Name a book that everyone has, no one reads, and contains the most characters ever put in between two covers.

phone book

This is an image depicting the answer to the riddle mentioned above.

What you see in the photo, other than my ultra generic but sincerely welcoming welcome mat, is something called a phone book. There is also a large orange door that keeps me safe from intruders. That is a cool color for a door, right? How many people can say that they have an orange door? Sometimes I describe it as “papaya” just to play it up. Unfortunately, my door’s special hue can’t get rid of the aforementioned abomination.

Last week, I arrived home from a taxing day of work and mindlessly climbed the stairs three stories up to my apartment. As I rounded the corner of the stairwell, I saw a line of identical plastic bags placed strategically in front of each door on my floor. As if they were presents or something. Pfft! I didn’t even have to inspect the shady package to know what awaited me. That is partly because the bag was clear, but mostly because I could smell the tears of the rain forest emanating from the pages.

Another phone book.

I didn’t fret. I had a plan. I would pretend it wasn’t there and hope that eventually maintenance or the old, hoarder lady next door would swipe it up without me having to even touch it. A week went by, and I noticed that the stubborn yellow eyesore wasn’t giving up easily. Although it moved about three feet from its original imposing position on my threshold, it continued to annoy me. But its position was such that it was no longer decipherable who’s doorstep the book belonged to, so I held on to my composure.

Until one day, I came home and found a disturbing scene at my door step.

There it was. The phone book, miraculously and deliberately resting not only on top of my threshold once again but actually leaning up against my door, clashing horribly with my beautiful papaya. It was as if it was telling me, “I’m coming in whether you like it or not.” It was inexplicable. Had one of my neighbors become frustrated by my blatant disregard for this unwanted delivery? Maybe someone was jealous of my courage to boldly reject the persistent Yellow Pages and wanted to teach me a lesson by nudging the book back closer to my door? Or perhaps the dumpster food itself scooted its way back into my path just to spite me.

There is no telling which scenario is more likely, but I still haven’t let that thing into my house. The last time I did, I ended up with a phone book Eiffel Tower on top of my fridge. Never again.

Okay, I get it. Not everyone is fortunate enough to have a NASA worthy computer the size of a staple at their disposal at all times. You know, besides the billions of people world wide who are using a cell phone. Excuse me, smart phone. But come on Yellow Book, do you really need to distribute five phone books to the same household twice a year to ensure that we are all able to order Domino’s when we are hung over?

Not only is it a huge waste of resources, but it just doesn’t make any sense. When was the last time you wished you had a phone book so you could look up your friend’s number that you lost? Never. Why? Probably because your friend’s number is a cell phone number, and guess what type of phone numbers are not in the phone book? The exact kind of number that you need. Plus, using a phone book when you can transfer information simply by booty bumping your mobile device with another is practically as primative as using a warming pan to heat your sheets at night.

warming pan

Can I use the embers of a burning phone book?

Phone book, you misguided me as a tween when I accidentally called the wrong Bobby Smith and lost my one chance at true love. You made sure to trick me into perpetually looking up numbers that were unlisted, and you most certainly don’t rip in half with ease like I saw on TV.

Your silly games no longer fool me. You are nothing but a pathetic leech clinging on for one last shot at cluttering my shelves. No, you are worse than clutter. You are a true waste of space.

As this game of chicken comes to an end, fear not. You will surely be scooped up and recycled by some Good Samaritan that is not me and then redistributed back to my very doorstep in six short months. But next time I will be ready…

About becca3416

Becca Cord is a twenty-something year old southern ballerina turned humor writer and video editor. Having lived in Louisiana her entire life, she is now perusing her travel dreams while starting her own free-lance Web Marketing business and organizing a nation wide blogging event, Blogger Interactive. She believes one of her callings is making people laugh, and she intends to do so. You can find Becca on her personal blog, Facebook page, or Twitter @becca25tofly.

Posted on March 1, 2013, in Humor, Opinion, Silly and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 80 Comments.

  1. I checked, no one else talked about this. This is what phone books are good for (I just feel so bad for the intern who had to put this together!):

  2. I too tried to ignore these abominations of pages and numbers that would find their way to my doorstep time after time, uninvited, unwanted, but I always failed in this endeavor. Initially, when I failed I let the book win – it found a home on a shelf near my kitchen to be handy for ordering take-out or delivery when the kitchen failed to produce something for dinner. But, after years of collecting dust and taking up space I have found a new way for the book to no longer reside on my doorstep and not win the game by crossing the threshold of my home – it gets taken straight to the recycle bin in my complex to be made into something useful in the future. I like to think it’s turned into some napkins and a cardboard box or two.

  3. Sorry, I’m getting caught up on reading….This is really well written. I just wanted to tell you. Yes, those phone books are nuisance! I have like five of them in my cupboards. I need to toss them all and they are a thing of the past!

    • Amy thank you for saying that! I was feeling very good about the writing on this one more so than the jokes. You should definitely chunk them. Or recycle. Get those clutter breeders out of there! Look out later this week to see how I disposed of mine ;).

  4. Our house is on a corner and sometimes people aren’t sure which is the front door & which is the back. As such, we get two phone books delivered every time it’s Phone Book Season. And there are 3 competing phone books in the area. If you need to find a number or beat a suspect in the interrogation room and don’t want to leave a mark? We can set you up.

    Oh, and Bridesmaids was on the other night and I thought of you. I turned it on during the “trying on bridesmaids’ dresses” scene. You asked in a comment if I was not a fan and I didn’t reply because of a reason that’s really good and legit, but actually I like the movie a lot. I’m a big fan of Paul Feig. I just wouldn’t have pictured that as your fave for some reason.

    • There’s a business idea I could get on board with. Inconspicuous weapons…. yes.

      You thought about me outside of blogging? I think I can say I’ve officially made it.

  5. Okay, so I showed my grandma this post tonight, and here’s how it went. Yes, she’s 73 and a frim beliver in phone books. Grandma says, shes funny, but how do you guys find poeple without the yellow pages, I don’t understand? LOL I say grandma, it’s called the 21st centuary and technology. We have the internet. We can find anything. I don’t need this heavy ass waste of paper anymore. Grandma…..you young people and your machines! Go to your machine and show me how to make a delicious strudel. I want a new receipe 🙂 Great post my friend. And yes, I did find her a new strudel recipie.

    Ps. I will email you about guest blogging 🙂 I’m inspired once again. So be prepared.

    • I’ve reached a whole new target market! That is so funny Amber. You should introduce her to Pinterest for recipes!

      I’ll be in the look out!

      • Pinterest, are you kidding me! She can barely understand how The Book of Face works! ‘It’s so amazing, you just take a picture with your machine and my sisters in Finland see this…But how??!!!’ LOL Thanks for the suggestion though, I’ll work my way up to the Big P!

  6. Hmm, seems I’m in the minority here. I love my phone book. But being on the underbelly of the world makes us a little strange straight up….

  7. Becca,
    This is old news, but Dumpster Food is your greatest invention. Right after your face. That’s a clear number one. Ok wait, your hair is number 2, and then Dumpster Food.

  8. Uhm, so, like… throwing it away in a public bin is an unacceptable solution, I take it? 😉

    • I don’t want people blaming me for being wasteful. It’s the company’s fault for producing them in the first place! I can’t be seen doing this.

  9. I used to get paid giving numbers out of those things, Becca… it is very easy to select the wrong number, as you know. You’ve just reminded me that I’m growing one of those phone book towers myself… I must investigate further…

  10. These things still exist? Can your next post talk about you training to tear it in half?

    • Now there is a scary post idea. Last time I tried didn’t go too well…

      Maybe a video of my attempt? I think you will all see the fate of this sad excuse for a directory next week.

  11. Phone books exist so corporations can find something to waste their advertising budget on.

  12. Ahhh, phone book. Not bible. It was so obvious, and yet so brilliant. I have no idea why those things still exist.

    Also, I’m totally jealous of your papaya door. Mine is brown and can only be described as poop-colored. Chocolate-colored if I’m feeling generous.

  13. I love this! Well said. Of course, I don’t need convincing that phone books are a waste, and embarrassing for all involved. At my old apartment, they used to leave a giant stack down by the mailboxes, which would remain there a couple days or weeks until the super had to throw them all out at once. Good job, yellow pages.

  14. this year i moved back to the town that i lived in 13 years ago. in addition to the regular phone book, there’s a local one that is created by the VFW with local advertisements. they delivered them last week, and i looked to see if i was in there. i am – but with the name address and phone number than i had 13 years ago, which is where my ex-wife still lives. the phone book apparently doesn’t recognize divorces.

  15. You could always practice for a strongman competition by ripping them in half.

  16. The Oregon DEQ has opt-out steps on their website for residents who don’t want to receive the book. Since registering, I haven’t received one. Phone books are useless and stupid unless you’re one of those meatheads who likes ripping them in half to prove something.

  17. In a pinch, the phone book can be used for something useful, such as when you run out of toilet paper. I keep one on the back of the commode, just in case. And I usually start with the Government section…

  18. Hey girl,

    Did you know you can opt out of receiving phone books? I didn’t either. Till I Googled it. Don’t say I never gave you anything. 🙂

    Love, Renee


  19. Becca,
    I totally agree that phone books are a waste.
    Here in Seattle the mayor passed a law creating an “opt-out” registry for people like us that don’t want them. The publishers of the yellow pages sued the city and won.
    What. A. Bunch. Of. Bullshit.

  20. Love running across another Louisiana lass who can make me laugh!

  21. Okay, first of all, your papaya door. My one non-negotiable aspect of my future house is that the front door MUST be red. …Forgive me, not red, scarlet. So someday you’ll see some shack with a scarlet door, and you’ll know that’s my crib.

    I hate phone books because I hate talking on the phone, and phone books only encourage calling people. So to make a long story short, I’m unlisted.

    • I like that you are not going to settle for a plain front door color. This life is too short not to paint your door scarlet, or papaya, or fuchsia, or whatever!

      I hate talking on the phone to strangers. It’s like when you are walking on a sidewalk and someone is on your same path, but walking the opposite way and you do that stutter step dance. But the talking version. Or something, I am not sure because my brain is too close to shutting off for the weekend.

  22. I get like three or four different versions of the yellow pages phone book (and one white pages) on my doorstep every single year and they all get used to prop something up or get thrown away (they are good for propping things up). I never use them for looking things up. I use the computer for that or my phone. Besides the print is too small for these old eyes.

    • I once used a phone book as a drumming practice pad. No joke. They can be useful in non conventional ways, but you have to really stretch your mind. I don’t have the patience anymore… as we all learned from Wednesday’s post ;).

  23. Honestly, I didn’t even realize they still put them out.
    I think the last ones we have are from 05…

    Have you thought about using it to develop your origami skills?

    • You are lucky. They haven’t found you yet.

      Origami! Now that’s a winning suggestion. Thanks Guap. Maybe I will consider bringing it in the house after all. But probably not.

  24. It’s official, Becca: You take any topic and fashion a kick-ass blog post around it!
    Your skills have grown by leaps and bounds, grasshopper.
    As for that dreaded book, just sprinkle some holy water over it. That should drive the evil and annoying spirits right out of there….

    • I find that my best posts come from the simplest ideas. I like that. I also like what you said about me growing. I feel like I definitely have come a long way, so it is refreshing and flattering to hear it from someone else.

      And you would know. You have been here from the start!

      Off to find some holy water….

  25. I bring mine straight to recycling! Or I leave it on my doorstep as holding area for the religious tracts that are left there… I think they see the Morticia Addams picture, the black silk roses, the skeleton bride & groom and think “someone here needs some old time-y religion”

  26. J.D. Gallagher

    I used to tell my younger brother that the phonebook was actually a sex offenders register. He didn’t speak to most of our neighbors for years.

  1. Pingback: Phone Book Disposal | 25ToFly

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