Which is also ironic when you think about caller ID and how everyone now screens every call and usually won't answer if they don't recognize the caller. When did we develop a fear of just picking up the phone and seeing who it is?
Personally, I've *always* had that fear. I actually get a tiny (very tiny, but it's still there) anxiety attack when the phone rings if I'm not expecting a call. I procrastinate with phone calls, I let anything I don't recognize go to voicemail if I'm not expecting. The phone out and out disturbs me.
Kaypeep, I think you have it backwards. Caller ID is a fairly new thing, as is voice mail and all that have followed.
We always answered the phone because it might be an emergency. As I got older and had babies, if I was busy, I assumed that if it was important, the caller would call back later.
Our married daughter got us our first answering machine after we had our first bag phone and it gave us a certain freedom of choice of answering the phone or not.
I take advantage of call screening, but some who are lonely or stuck in the '80's don't, or those who are just afraid to miss anything. Like the band student who answered her phone during a concert dress rehearsal! (She caught holy heck for that!) or anyone of any age who answers the phone in church.
Like Traska, I hate answering cold calls, although I don't quite have the anxiety he seems to.
Also, sometimes it is just very inconvenient to talk, no matter what - at the store checkout, when signing papers to buy a new car, in a bar when the caller isn't someone I am expecting to meet, in heavy traffic, having lunch with friends. To me it sounds as if the prospective employee was in one of those situations and should never have answered the phone.