Who’s calling?

Published 12:15 pm Wednesday, March 22, 2023

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The phone rings several times a day at my “office,” a place under the stairs where we used to store cleaning supplies. I equipped it with a TV tray to hold my computer, and a carboard box to house my “research materials.”

My hope was to attract customer calls for writing assignments. But each time the phone rings, the caller starts by saying “This conversation may be recorded for training purposes.”

A couple weeks ago, I started writing down what each caller discussed. Here’s a recent sampling:

A lady with a strong southern drawl said that her company would like to buy our house for cash. I asked her how soon she could get here, and if she could pay in small bills. She hung up.

A dude with a deep baritone asked me if I felt my yard needed mood lighting. I told him I was in no mood to continue our conversation.

Another male voice asked me if our air conditioners were prepared for summer. I told him they were hibernating now, and I would call him when we woke them up in May.

A lady greeted me by asking the condition of our bathroom. She said she could modernize it in one day. I said if she could do it real cheap, I would flush with excitement. She also hung up.

Another kind voice offered me a free insect identification and analysis. I declined, because I just call them all “bugs.” And I don’t think they need analysis, because their brains are teeny-tiny.

Finally, one day ended with a man offering ventriloquist lessons. “How do I know they work?” I asked.

“Because right now I’m drinking water,” he said, “and the dummy is talking to you.”

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