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A blast from the past on one Roslindale street

Payphone on Belgrade Avenue in Roslindale

What appears to be a still functioning payphone remains mounted on the wall and trapped in time on Belgrade Avenue, near Walworth Street (we didn't try to make a call because neither of us had anybody we wanted to talk to at the moment).

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called yourself to see if it worked. Whatever the 2018 equivalent of "hipster" is would surely carry some pocket change, just in case he wandered across a payphone, right?

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Voting closed 10

What's that? Cashless society is a thing.

This is the only retro Cash I carry anymore:

IMAGE(https://i.etsystatic.com/13321089/r/il/ab4ccc/1138392482/il_570xN.1138392482_1jlq.jpg)

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Voting closed 5

They appreciate that you're keeping yourself so trackable and so susceptible to impulse buys.

Waitstaff also like that you pass their tips to their bosses first for safekeeping.

Sticking it to the service class is definitely something the man in black would have approved of.

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Voting closed 5

...but that ain't the worst.

Here's the worst...the banks, like Citi, want to skim 3% off of every transaction in the damn world. When you pay cash, the merchant gets the right amount. When you use a credit card, the merchant pays a 2-3% vig.
Then, they get you on the other side when you don't pay it off in full.

...and we love it...

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Voting closed 24

First, most business already factor credit card processing into their processing. So customers are giving the business an extra bonus with cash.

Second, cash ain't free to businesses. It cost money to sort and track, then you need to bring it to the bank (or pay for an armored car). Cash gets "lost" pretty easily too as a malicious employee might skim a $20 or a careless one might not give the right change. A lot of businesses prefer credit as it greatly simplifies things.

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Voting closed 19

I read a story during one of the hurricanes, possibly Katrina, that at a gas line before a highway, the station was CC only because they were afraid of getting robbed.
The guy who wrote the story had to pay for the guy behind him using a CC because the guy only had cash.

I've been in sub shops where I've seen people buying subs with a CC. It's common now, but a bit jarring a few years ago.

Now get off my lawn.

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Voting closed 11

It's amazing what people have fallen for in the name of almighty "convenience". Allowing themselves to be incessantly tracked by the "overlord". And you've actually got people like the poster above (Swirly) implying it's "hip" or "current" to be cashless. This is one area I am glad to be old school. CVS cards and the like also track people, obviously.

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Voting closed 21

So you follow me around and watch what I actually do?

Ever occur to you that my snark tag is rarely closed?

I bet you wouldn't even know that I'm old enough to have hatched two millennials.

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Voting closed 8

You mean you're one of those Lizard People I keep reading so much about?

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Voting closed 4

Blizzard of 1978, no credit cards, no ATMs ,most had no checking accounts to pay by check. Most transactions were on the cuff. Your word was your bond.

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Voting closed 7

Take cards for the cashless?

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Voting closed 8

You fail the test.

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Voting closed 4

How damn old am I?
I remember when they went from two way calls to outgoing only. A few guys at Columbia and Wash sat in front of a bank of a few payphones all day and night. No one else was allowed to use them.

Don't know why.

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Voting closed 4

I pass 'live' pay phones all the time (admittedly a small fraction of how many used to dot the land in the old days, but still...) If I pass one I haven't encountered before/recently, I sometimes pick up the receiver to see if it's still humming. It's good to know where I can make a call even if my phone battery runs out.

So, just from relatively recent memory, there is at least one other payphone in Rosi square at the Poplar/Corinth/Washington corner. There are also working ones at Children's Hospital, in the American Legion mall, in Chinatown, in the North End, in Mattapan (one near Americas Food Basket and one further up Blue Hill Ave near the library), in Coolidge Corner near the Trader Joes, a few still at the Dedham Mall (many empty kiosks though), at the East Boston shipyard, and I think at most T stations (definitely North/South/Back Bay Stations) and most rest stops along the pike. Etc etc ad nauseum. Honestly - I think there must still be hundreds in Boston alone.

And yes, you can use debit/credit card - there are directions posted right on them. Although it costs a fortune and I would have to be in a nasty spot to give out my card # to whoever's on the other end of that number!

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Voting closed 26

I miss pay phones in some bizarre, nostalgic way. Knowing they were there if I needed one made me feel secure in a way that cell phones somehow do not.

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Voting closed 20

Nah whats a blast from the past is finding a NYNEX or New England Telephone Pay Phone that hasn;'t been rebranded. There's a few out there..

There's still pay phones around, just not as many. Most now its a buck 50 to make a call, but its unlimited.

Pay Phones is something cell phones just put out of business. There's virtually no money in maintaining them anymore, and the ones that do are bargain barrel companies. Even the CLEC's dont have pay phones anymore, they sold them off years ago.

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Voting closed 7

I wish I had taken a photo of it, as it definitely belongs in a museum ;-) The phone has no coin slot and says it takes only credit cards.

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Voting closed 11

I recently had to use a pay phone inside South Station after my cell phone died and it was a blast from the past.

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Voting closed 14

there's one near Neoponset street by the army barracks in Dorchester. Haven't tried it

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Voting closed 19