your call is important to us

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Brisbane Courier – 14 January 1909   One hundred years ago, “Sorry to have kept you waiting” was in the telephonist’s manual of responses.

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Sunday Times – Perth – 8 December 1929

Some persons habitually call their friends and acquaintances at meal time, because they feel sure that they will then find them at home. But this is decidedly bad form, and there are some people who make it a rule never to be disturbed at meal time. It is perfectly courteous to have the one who answers the phone simply say: “Mrs. Jones is at dinner. Do you wish her to call you up when she is finished?” It is not thoughtful to leave dinner guests to talk on the phone.

Hmmm…..is leaving the table or room to take a phone call a lost practice?