You’ve been in this situation before. You’re talking on the cell phone with a friend or a family member or a business associate, and you start to talk over each others sentences. You come to the end of a sentence, and the second you start another one, the person on the other end of the line begins speaking because he thought you were done. Then you stop because he has started saying something, and then he stops too because he finally hears you start up again and thinks you are going to continue.
This could go on forever if you don’t get a proper rythmn going. The fault: that damn time delay (it’s not just a problem with "via satelitte" interviews on CNN).
The solution: I suggest we start using the word "over" in our cell phone conversations. Pilots use it, they use it in the military, and we used to use it (I think) when everyone wanted a CB radio because Greg Evigan used one. When you are done with your point, just say "over." This will be the cue for the other person to begin talking. When he’s done, he also says "over" so you know when to continue your end of the conversation. Just think of the time and embarrassment we’ll save. (And don’t forget to say "over and out" when you’re done.)
It’s such a simple solution, really. And you’re welcome. Just part of my never-ending quest to bring back things from the past and start using them again. Next up: Dorothy Hamill haircuts and rotary phones.