Friday, April 20, 2012


Every now and then, I wonder what ever happened to the top of my desk. Under all the papers and post-its and notes and expired coupons and junk mail and tear-off sheets from the bills, I should be able to find a nice smooth, shiny slab of solid oak. I know I am! So, every now and then, not because I really have the time, but just because I really cannot stand it any more, I get busy and clean-off all that stuff. I'll bet you already know what I find: Phone numbers. Everywhere, phone numbers. Sometimes with a name; usually just the number. When my children take messages, they don't write-down details; they just write numbers. And I found lots of "800" numbers, too. These numbers must mean something, don't you think? Every one of those phone numbers contains the seed of a relationship—a business connection, a link to the parents of my children's friends, a way to track down my errant teen-agers when they're out too late, maybe even the seeds of a new friendship. All in those numbers. The last time I cleaned-off and organized my desktop, I followed my curiosity about all those phone numbers. Using the reverse telephone number look-up service, I put names and addresses to all those numbers. Sure enough, secreted in all those little scraps of paper, I had an entire personal network. The reverse phone-number look-up service helped me build a directory of all the people with whom I regularly do business, and I put together all of my friends' digits, and I have built a system for keeping track of the kids, and I even found a promising new restaurant…that delivers! Just a little bit of time with the reverse phone number look-up service and I got organized. Best of all, though, I got a life!

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An American Democrat