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  • Paul Davidson

Words For <i>Your</i> Enjoyment: Telemarketers

Friday. STOP.

Words For Your Enjoyment. STOP.

Idea provided by Andrea. STOP.

So you’re asking yourself, “What does the above old-school form of a telegram have to do with telemarketers? Why would PD be trying to draw conclusions between the two when there’s absolutely nothing in common between the two except for the fact that they’re both ways of communicating with others across great distances?

The key here, is the word STOP. The one thing I’d wish telemarketers would do, when it comes to calling my house.

You know the scenario as it happens to all of us. The phone rings, we look on our call waiting and see that it’s a number we don’t recognize or an 800 number but yet we still HAVE TO answer the phone. Because our curiosity gets the better of us. “What if it’s Ed McMahon calling to give away some money to me?” For your information, Ed McMahon no longer gives away any money anymore so it’s time to get that out of your head.

Although people find it extremely frustrating, I love to deal with telemarketers in a variety of ways. Ways that the normal MSNBC’s and FOX News and Primetime Network News Programs would never recommend you try for the simple reason that, well, you gotta be off your rocker and have a lot of time on your hands to even try them. Here’s a few of my favorites that cause our friends to never call me back again:

The “I Speak As Bad English As You Do” Scenario: Often, I find myself faced with someone calling who says things like, “Heeh-lo, Meeeester Dah-vaahdson? Theeeez esss yhur chreeedit caaaaard coooompany caahhhling.” I like to one up them by talking in gibberish, only allowing one word to make sense. This surely throws them off. “Achtub sheaa kaaanow Davidson pshhhhu telephone.” After saying it three times, with them still not comprehending, they hang up the phone. Success!

The “I Know You From High School” Scenario: What a surprise when the telemarketer calling you, who gives you their name from the outset (Mr. Jones, Sherri Miller, et al) is someone from your high school that you took shop class with! What a coincidence! (Uh, no). But it’s at least fun to make them think they just tele-harrassed their own hometown friend!

Them: Hello, Mr. Davidson? This is Sherri Miller from Chase Credit Card.

Me: Not, THE Sherri Miller!

Them: Excuse me?

Me: We went to high school together, Sherri!! Jeeez, how many years has it been!?

Them: We went to high school together?

Me: Uhh, duh. Shop class?

Them: Shop class.

Me: You made that wonderful box thing out of wood for your dad, remember?

Sometimes you’ll luck out and get someone who gives away their hometown and their high school and then you can go on for hours (which I will gladly do) remembering all the great moments of Nemaha Valley High School and that time little Jimmy got stuffed into a garbage can. Boy, those were the days! (Success!)

The “I Just Smashed My Toe Into The Corner Of The Coffee Table” Scenario: In this scenario, as soon as I hear the voice of the telemarketer, I like to scream very loudly, expressing my most recent (fake) pain.

Me: Owwwww!!

Them: Sir, are you okay?

Me: OKAY? What do you think the screeching from my vocal chords actually means!? I just smashed my foot into the metal edge of my coffee table!

Them: Oh my, I’m sorry. Are you OK?

Me: No. Owwww. Oh, it hurts. I think I broke my toe.

Them: Is this a bad time? Should we call back?

Me: Can you call my Doctor? He’s a foot doctor. Really good. He’ll know what to do. He’s listed in the book under Klein.

Them: Uhh. Well. We really can’t make outgoing calls….Why don’t we just call you back later.

Me: I’ll be at the foot doctor.

Them: Next week?

Me: The rehabilitation is going to take some time. I doubt I’ll be able to work up the strength to walk to the phone for some time.

Them: Good day, sir.

Uhh, success!

The “Let Me Sell You Something While You’re On The Phone” Scenario: If you’re going to call me and try to get me to buy something from you then isn’t it fair that I get the opportunity to try and sell YOU something in the process? I often like to speak as if I’m reading from a pre-written document…

Me: Although your offer for insurance on my credit card sounds like a wonderful opportunity, I’d like to take a moment to ask you about your shoe inserts. Do you find that the arch of your foot aches after a hard day calling strangers on the telephone? Do you say things like, “Oh my aching dogs” at the end of the day? Then might I offer you the opportunity to purchase, from my own home business, the Foot Insert 2000 — the most advanced gel shoe insert ever!! If I could just get your credit card number…?

Oh, the success.

The “What Country Are You Calling From And Would I Have To Send My Payment Check To You In Indonesia And How Does That Work” Scenario: Often, the people calling you are calling you from somewhere in the middle of Asia (cause it’s cheaper to hire people who can’t enunciate words from the English language and pay them slave labor while working in a sweaty barn somewhere) and although they’re working for companies based in the US, I often like frustrating them when it comes to closing the deal:

Me: So, that deal sounds great. Where are you calling from?

Them: Indonesia, sir.

Me: Wait a second. You’re calling from Indonesia?

Them: Yes, sir.

Me: But then if I sign up for this newspaper subscription, do I have to send my checks to Indonesia? I don’t even know how much postage to put on an envelope for that!

Them: Sir, we are calling from The Los Angeles Times. You send your check to Los Angeles.

Me: I may not be smart or anything, but I don’t get why The Los Angeles Times is calling me from Indonesia? I don’t want the news from Indonesia. I live in Los Angeles.

Them: Sir, we are calling on behalf of the Los Angeles Times. All the news you will get will be from Los Angeles.

Me: But I like World News. You’re telling me I’m getting a paper that has no World News?

Them: No, sir. It has World News sections as well.

Me: News from Indonesia?

Them: Yes, sir.

Me: Exactly what I didn’t want! I think I’m going to rethink my purchase of this paper at this moment in time.

Not even a response. More of a frustrated Indonesian sigh, then the phone hangs up. Once again, I have achieved success!

There are other ways. There is the “I’ve Fallen And I Can’t Get Up” scenario, the “I Will Sing Every Response To You Until You Get Fed Up With My Lack of Musical Talent” scenario, the “I’m a Retard” scenario, the “I’m Going To Speak In An English Accent And Pretend You Called London” scenario and my all-time favorite… the “This is Former President Bill Clinton On The Line and Are You Wearing Red Panties” scenario.

It’s gets ’em every time.

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