First off, a slight apology: I've been bad about blogging lately. Life's been busy. I got married, for one thing. And Will & Bequeath
is actually managing to make a few sales, which is exciting, but is keeping me busy.
But it's time to get back to business.
First, some news: I'm featured on the House & Home website this week
. Check out the gallery we put together of my "favourite rooms." I'm not sure they're my really-real favourites, but each image illustrates a decorating concept I like. Check it out.
Now onto today's business: rotary phones. I love them. I always have. Between 2007 and 2009, I event went back to using one (an old Bell Canada black classic). I liked that it worked as a design element -- almost a piece of furniture in and of itself. I liked that it stayed operational, even when the power went out. I liked that it had a real brass bell inside that rang in a delightfully sonorous (not annoyingly beepy) way. I liked the heft of the hand set and that it didn't get hot against my ear. (My cell phone gets hot against my ear, and I'm pretty sure it's giving me cancer.)
But Nate and I have VoIP now, and the rotary phone is in the basement. It would work, had we the right system, but we don't. And I really miss it.
That's a handsome looking phone. No?
So... what to do? It turns
out, there are many ways to hack an old rotary phone to work on a contemporary system. A high school friend of mine -- Jason -- turned me on to this. (Hi Jason!) He gutted the inside of an old rotary handset, and installed a bluetooth wireless mic and speaker inside instead. Now, his old rotary phone handset works on his cell phone line! The wires are gone, but as long as his cell is in the house, he can talk through the handset of his old rotary, which has the bluetooth inside. Get it? Pretty neat hack, right?So, I've been wanting to try this myself. Jason insisted it was easy, but I've done a lot of Googling, and it doesn't look as simple as advertised. (Nothing ever is, is it?) Here's a round up of different attempts from the geek-friendly site Hack a Day. Some hackers say you need to learn to solder. And let's face it, that's not going to happen. Here's a great instructional guide that includes soldering. And here's one that doesn't.
In addition to my black 500 series, I have an orange rotary phone like this one, too. Via.
My question for you is this: should I attempt it? My hesitations are as follows:
1. I'd lose some of the things I love most about the vintage rotary technology (such as the bell sound).
2. The vintage rotary phones still work as originally intended ... once I gut them, they won't. If this goes wrong, I'll have ruined them.
3. I'm not sure rotary phones are as great looking as I think they are. Have they become hipster kitch? Is it sort of silly to want to have one in my home?
If you know me, you know I'm bad about the telephone in general. Call my cell phone and I'm not likely to answer. Most likely, I don't even have the cell on me. Most likely, it's dead and lost in the dust bowl under the front seat of my car. Since letting go of my rotary, I've come to hate the telephone. And I'm thinking that I might be a better friend and contact if I brought the rotary phone back.So that's an argument in favour.
What do you guys think?