It began with the Phoenicians. Remember them? The guys who first wrote stuff down? Invented the Alphabet? They had that show six thousand years ago where monsters down by the river side learned to count and write letters, Sesame Stream it was called. Asir the Gripe would complain about something and Large Lamassu would get confused and finally Gorgon would try to explain it all. Remember that show? Master Hoplite ran the grocery store and Large Lamassu would get his name wrong all the time?
Eons of writing stuff down, having first stone and clay tablets, then vellum, and after that, with dubious glances from the librarians that this new fangled thing was just a fad (and they were right) papyrus. Screeching into the modern era came a wonderful invention developed by a Spanish Piñata maker, paper.
Ah, so versatile, light weight, foldable, correctable, but sadly, as the librarian in Alexandria discovered one night as the dark sky was awash with flames as the collective knowledge of all mankind(and womankind) went up in smoke, that it was not the best material to invest records in.
So there, in my eye doctors office, the clerk is showing me her computer screen with a phone number I've not used in ten years is the reason why they couldn't call me to cancel my appointment.
It was another invention, made by accident and used by secretaries at 3M that did me in.
The Post It note.
When I went to the new phone I did update my eye doc's records. I know this because they CALLED ME on 6/8/11. Yes, last month they called my new phone. I have the phone records as proof. They knew my number last month and magically, this month they do not.
My other clue is the bank of medical records in their tiny office. Paper should be dead by now and the trees breathing a sigh of relief with the advent of TERROR-drives, and off-site back up drives and that whizz bang thingy called computers, which my doctor's office has hooked up to flat screen monitors along with data entry kiosks called, "Keyboard" which is a mis-nomer as the board does not have any keys on it, but I digress.
So they have this thing, this marvelous thing of science capable of taking all those files and scribing them onto a memory device smaller than my thumbnail.
So did this amazing tool of the modern age hiccup and loose my phone number after so many years?
I'm thinking it was the Phoenicians armed with Post It notes.
Let's be real. Thousands of years of writing stuff down is a hard habit to break and someone at my eye doc's place wrote the number down, correctly I might add, on a Post It note and stuck it on to my file and this sufficed for all this time, including last month. But nothing lasts forever and that Post It note fell off, flitted to the floor like the first leaf of Autumn, stuck to someone's shoe and was never seen again.
This leaves the clerk turning to her scrying pool of silicon chips looking at a number from history as old as the Sphinx. And, like the Sphinx, not answering when called.
This leave me shit out of luck with a growth on my eye lid.
I am not happy.