It’s only a matter of time before the cell phone “ring tones” include the sound of an AK 47 or an Uzi. Or at least the sound of a Colt .45.
They call the sounds that cell phones make “ringtones.” Phones don’t actually RING anymore. Not even real phones attached to real land lines. Such as there are left of them.
So, they make sounds and most of the sounds are inoffensive, and they call them tones.
Most cell phones don’t make sounds similar to weapons. Yet. They are much deadlier. They play imbecile-grin versions of classic and classical melodies. “Moonlight Sonata” is a current favorite. For the devout, there’s always “Jesu Joy of Man’s Desiring.” And for the frolickers (does anyone really FROLIC?), there’s always a snappy Latin favorite like “La Cucaracha” or maybe “Brazil.”
Notice they use older melodies. This is largely because newer songs don’t HAVE melodies, any more than newer telephones have rings.
Soon people will tire of stupid melodies played stupidly, and that’s when you can expect the sounds of weaponry.
Beside the AK47 and the Uzi, we’re likely to get the sounds of a suicide bomb, downloaded live from Iraq, Afghanistan or anywhere else America may be not minding its own business on any given day.
For the traditionalists, there are the authentic sounds of an American Revolution era blunderbuss. (Remember, back in those days, almost no one owned a gun, except in times of war, and one of those Uzis could have changed the course of the war if it had been on the side of the Redcoats. Even when militias were granted the right to bear arms, most didn’t. Gun nuttiness is a 20th Century phenom.)
After the upcoming Sounds of Mass Destruction, we may expect to hear telephones imitate the sounds of traffic, or the sounds of typewriters or adding machines. Or pinball machines. Or windup toys. Or the hooves of horses. Or windup alarm clocks. Or AM radio.
All kinds of stuff you don’t hear anymore, or that several generations have NEVER heard.
Construction noises are waiting in the wings.
Jackhammers. Cement mixers. Cranes. Steam shovels.
And let’s not forget transportation sounds: garbage trucks backing up or ingesting trash, for example. Steam engines. Ambulances. Fire trucks. Police cars.
Subway cars. The sound of the D Train pulling into 59th St.
Or cows, sheep, goats and barking dogs. Or factory sounds: the five o’clock whistle. The Ford production line. Or if you’re a real nostalgia fan the Pontiac production line.
Or office sounds – like paper jamming in a printer. Or lechers getting slapped in the break room.
Perhaps even a shredder shredding e-mails.
Kitchen sounds, maybe. A tea kettle, boiling water.
All of these are better than electronic rendition of “The Anvil Chorus” or Beethoven’s Fifth.
But no silly synthesized sound is better at signaling an incoming call than a plain old telephone ring.
-RIP Victor Gotbaum, 93, the labor leader who helped pull New York back from the edge of bankruptcy.
I'm Wes Richards, my opinions are my own, but you're welcome to them. ®
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© WJR 2015