I love to talk to you. I love to catch up, to find out how things are going in your lives, to dive deep into your burning questions of meaning and spirituality. I just hate to do it on the phone. And yet, I'm aware that for many people, telephone calls are a primary means of communication. And so every now and then, I am forced to pick up the phone and call someone. I've started doing it more. It's still hard for me.
I realized recently that when I'm on the phone, in order for me to be fully present with the person with whom I'm conversing, it helps me to be in a dark room with no other sensory input at all. Of course, I do most of my phone calling while driving (on the hands-free speaker system in the car, don't worry), which is very much the opposite of that environment.
Here is a pretty good ranking of how I like to communicate:
In person. Over coffee or tea. One-on-one when possible. In my office if you'd like. Or wherever is most convenient for you. If you'd like to have an in-person conversation, let me know. I'll meet you somewhere. Or drop by my open office hours some Thursday afternoon at Mimi's. Nothing else comes close. But not right after service on a Sunday (and especially not right before service on a Sunday), though that's a great time to make an appointment with me (my calendar is always in my pocket).
Over Zoom, FaceTime, or similar video chat that has both visual and audio components to it. At a pre-arranged, mutually convenient time.
Facebook Messenger or other social media-esque application. I have What'sApp now. I'll chat with you there if you'd like. If there's one I don't know about that you use, I'll download it to talk with you on.
By text message. Best for short questions and not real conversations.
On the phone at a pre-arranged time so that I can be in a dark room on a comfy chair.
By e-mail. email@example.com.
Long, handwritten letters sent by US Postal Service mail.
Telegraph? Semaphore? Morse code from a light hung on the mast of a ship sailing the Hudson River?
On the phone at a random time that might or might not be good for either of us.
But however it is you reach out, please do. Because I love talking with you.