Thought The Da Vinci Code or the Bible were the most popular printed works ever? Paul Collins, writing in Slate, says you're wrong: the phone book is, having gone viral after the first one-page directory was printed in New Haven in February, 1878. The same posturing for attention that we see today on sites like MySpace or Facebook surfaced there, too, as people changed their names to things like Zznar or Aaaaaron to assure a prominently first or last position in the listings. Thought that language was purer b4 the proliferation of SMS shorthand and twitter books? Because of space constraints, telephone books brought abbreviation to an apotheosis unparalleled until texting. (In phone book speak, you could say that you were meeting “wm” at the “delctssn” after seeing your “phys.”)Oh snap, modern society. Respect your elders.
Happy anniversary, the phone book
Or, more pointedly, congratulations the phone book, for still being around! What's more: