What did we do BC -- Before cell phones?

Very early each morning I take a 45-minute walk with my dog.

We live near a busy road and walk on a sidewalk alongside it. And just about every day I see several drivers talking on their cell phones or texting.

Their preoccupation with their phones has led to some close calls for me and the pup. Some of these drivers don’t notice traffic signals; some ignore stop signs or simply disregard yielding to pedestrians.

All of that is alarming, but what perplexes me is: Who could they possibly have to talk with so early in the morning?

I wonder whether Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood ponders similar questions as he pushes to limit driver distraction. And automakers such as Ford Motor Co. and General Motors Co. must recognize a problem, too. Ford’s Sync and GM’s OnStar offer hands-free calling.

Call me old-fashioned, but I have to ask: What did we do in the days before cell phones?

Sure, just like indoor plumbing, cell phones have made life easier in some ways.

But I remember times when people did not constantly chatter on the phone. And as I recall, the world ran just fine. People still accomplished errands, conducted business, maintained relationships and picked up the kids from school on time.

Most important, fewer folks probably had to worry about getting hit by a distracted driver while walking the dog.