The Random Picture Taken in Rumford That Mainers Made Go Viral
It's truly unpredictable -- the random memes, the random status updates, and the random pictures that we'll post on our social media on any given day that just takes off and goes viral.
For some people (mostly social media influencers, whose job it is to go viral), any and everything posted is well-intentioned with a laid out plan to go viral. For most, it's something as simple as a photo of what they cooked for dinner, their pet or child (or both together) doing something cute that's tossed up without thinking twice about that gets a ton of social media love.
Or, in this one Mainer's case, it's a random picture of what's been considered "a relic" by some commenters that unexpectedly took off without him even realizing right away.
If you're a '90s kid, then not only do you remember payphones being spread pretty much all around Maine back in the day, but you also just realized you probably forgot how they used to be everywhere.
Street corners, schools, stores, gas stations -- everywhere. According to a June 2023 story by WGME, there are less than 50 payphones left spread throughout Maine, mostly along Interstate 95. (If you're that curious, here's a list of where every remaining payphone is located.)
Photographer Steve Yenco, who posts a lot of his amazing Maine-made photography on his Mainly Maine Photography Facebook page, thought nothing of the picture he posted on his Facebook page of a snow-covered payphone in a little park in Rumford overlooking the Androscoggin River, but was blown away hours later.
I just got of work and couldn't believe how much interest a picture of a phone has generated.
But when you deep dive into the comments, it seems like there's one clear reason why Steve's payphone picture blew up -- nostalgia of happier, simpler times.
Love it! Only in Maine can you go back to the good ole days! - Andynsandi Florida
Omg kids today don't have a clue!! - Kelly Powers
The perfect excuse for being late. Cause you couldn't find a payphone. - Garrett Pray
Good old days, when no one was connected to their phones. - Kathy SC
The rest of the comments are filled with guessing the location of Steve's picture, memories of using payphones, and pictures of payphones that Mainers still come across today (including a few of Mainers' children trying to figure out what such "a relic" is and how it works.)
Maine -- how life should be, and where you can always go back to the good ole days.
LOOK: 50 Famous brands that no longer exist
Gallery Credit: Liz Barrett Foster
Here's What Six Former Bonanza Steakhouses in Maine Look Like Now
Gallery Credit: Jeff Parsons