I've been blogging on Blogger since December of 2007. In the early days I made mention of Lily Tomlin's Ernestine or used "One ringy-dingy" - her signature phrase - in a title. And since then I've had 1,264 hits on just that one phrase alone. Imagine that. I found out that little tidbit of information browsing thru the Stats section we Blogger bloggers now have on our blogs. Statistics fascinate me. Maybe that's why I loved to sit and look thru encyclopedias at school when I had Study Hall in the library. Learning the populations of countries, their average temperatures and rainfalls, their natural resources, what they exported, their capitol cities. Averages of this. Percentages of that. My mind is what I call a trivia junk yard. You wouldn't believe the amount of information my brain has accumulated thru the years. I play a killer game of Trivial Pursuit. In fact, most family members won't play with me. I won't even know I remember this stuff until the right question comes along on "Jeopardy" and the answer pops out of me. And it all goes back to being bored out of my mind in Study Hall. Especially my Senior year when I had two Study Halls. And Health Room Assistant for another class. And Library Assistant for another. In my Senior year, due to moving around a lot thru high school, I had all but 2 credits I needed for graduation. I thought I'd be a smarty pants and take mindless classes to fill in my schedule. I had no idea how numbingly dumb that decision was until about two weeks into my Senior year. The easy way is not always the best way. I learned that early on.
I graduated from high school in June 1972. I started my first full-time adult job the very next day. No drunken parties celebrating for me! I had a time clock to punch...or a time sheet to sign, anyway...the very next morning at 8 am. I worked in Medical Records at a local hospital, training for two weeks on day shift, and then switching over to work swing shift. I worked swing shift for two years, until I got married. I recently wrote about reconnecting with one of the wonderful friends I made while working there named LuAnn. But as I began writing about Ernestine the telephone operator tonite it brought to mind another special friend from those years, my "California Friend Liz". We were the two delegated to file correspondence in to hundreds of thousands of medical charts...maybe millions! Or at least that's the way it seemed as we traveled up and down the aisles crammed full of shelves from floor to ceiling. Eight hours per nite, with our tall metal tables-on-wheels with glue pots and hole punchers and stacks and stacks of paper. Every once in a while we'd stumble across an interesting chart...the psychiatric ones were real eye openers! And we'd do whatever we could to ease the boredom and the creepiness, especially when we were working on files waaaaaaaaaaaaay back away from everyone else. That's when we became Ernestine and Edith Ann. It didn't take much to entertain an 18 year old and a 21 year old. One of us would get it started and away we'd go. Oh, the hours of endless giggles we shared! After I became a mother my rendition of Edith Ann could entertain my kids endlessly.
I don't imagine when Lily Tomlin created these two characters she ever dreamed they'd take on a life of their own, that they'd endure thru generations and be beloved by each one. How beloved? Well, 1,264 blog hits on mine alone tells us something, considering my second-most-hit entry was about Spring and had only 344 in comparison! I think she must've patterned Edith Ann after me....I was such a brat-child, too!
"Buster! Where are you?"