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Frank Koerner

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Bell Wringing
by Frank Koerner
Saturday, January 21, 2012
Rated "G" by the Author.
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Recent poems by Frank Koerner
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           >> View all 100


13 years after Alexander Graham Bell invented the telephone, pay phones were introduced. They grew from a lone outpost in a Connecticut bank to a multi billion-a-year market. Coin phones are now almost extinct because of the proliferation of phone cards, credit cards, and cell phones. Sadly, their departure has meant the end of a user’s occasional moment of triumph…...



When Alex dialed that first number and Watson answered the phone,

Bell became a phony king, so let's knock him off his throne.

He created a new industry and most certainly it was needed, but

Not everything said on the damn thing ought to be seriously heeded.


The phone rings Sunday morning, 4 A.M to be precise,

Instantaneous information! What a wonderful device!

A dash to the phone. A curse, "Bell couldn't have been dumber!"

Why didn't he also invent a way to avoid, "Sorry, wrong number!"


Then there's the valid connection containing a sales pitch,

If Bell were standing here right now?  Brother, would I bitch!

How do I keep these people out of my financial hair,

"No, I don't want a week in July in a Death Valley time share."


Now you can make a car call at 120 miles per hour,

Why would anybody do that? Does it give a sense of power?

I think I'll pass on this one; for a car phone I'm not ready,

Until I have a racing need to call a family named Andretti.


Someone's figured out a way to use telephone cable wire

To bring TV right to your home, but only under hire.

One can view reruns all day, if one's finances can carry it,

We didn't pay the first time through for shows like Ozzie & Harriet.


Pay telephones were everywhere. The coins? It

sure did eat them,

But Alex goofed, provided the means by which we could defeat him.

Who could deny the swell of power, "Alex Bell, you've made my day!"

By finding money left by someone in the money tray.

Copyright © 2012 by Frank Koerner 


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Reviewed by Patrick Granfors 1/29/2012
I confess as a youngster to stuffing a wad of paper into the coin return so that they didn't return. Not until the paper was removed at least. Now the phone is getting revenge and my bills are a tad steeper. Patrick
Reviewed by RWE SAYS BYE 1/29/2012
Reviewed by Ronald Hull 1/22/2012
Great laughs at this phony bit of history. The fact is that Alexander Graham Bell only got the phone business because he won a lawsuit over a rival claiming to have turned in the patent before him. That would've changed everything… Not!


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