London (phone) calling

“What do Americans call that?” an Australian co-worker asked me the other day as she pointed to my phone.

“A cell phone.”

Tradition: Biz, Danielle and MJ recreate their Epcot picture in an actual phone booth in actual London (see London town countdown). photo by Tom Miller

“Do you call it anything else?”

Blank look.

“Something that begins with an ‘M,’” she prompted.

I slowly replied, “A mobile phone?”

She starts laughing hysterically and between her laughter I can hear her mimic me, “Moe-bull.”

That’s when I learned a cell should be referred to as a “Moe-by-ell” phone.

There is hardly a person these days who does not feel naked without a moe-by-ell phone.  With in an hour of moving in our London flats, 20 of us marched to a phone shop.

The sales transaction went something like this:

“What’s the cheapest phone with Skype that you sell?”

The sales lady shows us 20 moe-by-ells.

“Great, can we have 20 of them?”

It’s incredible. Using the internet service, Skype, I can call my family, thousands of miles away, for free. I can call all the journalism students for free. I can text them for free.

It’s wonderful.

Then Skype goes scatty* and I’m stuck without a means of communication.  It might be time to use a red telephone booth…**

*British/Irish term for crazy.

** Old means of communication before the moe-by-ell

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