Thursday, March 27, 2014


I don't really like phones. I love my iPhone and all the cool stuff it can do that's not involved with talking to people. Text messaging, e-mail, social media, books, music, apps... The thing rocks, but voice conversations are overrated. (There's a story here, but I'm saving that for another day.)

Thus, if someone calls me that's not in my address book, I assume that it's a salesman, and I ignore it. If it's a real caller they will likely leave a message, and I can call them back.

I had a period when I would answer, listen to whatever the phone-spammer had to say, and respond with, "No thank you, but I have a great offer for you. Would you like a subscription of my books? For just $19.99 including postage and shipping you will get a signed book every month."

Attempting to sell something to a sales-person is amusing, and a great way to end the call. Sure, I realize these people are just doing their jobs the best they can, but they're still annoying.

Anyway, the other day I decided to answer, against better judgment. The phone rang from an unknown number around lunch time, and I thought it might be my mom. I don't know why I would get such an idea - she hasn't called me since some time in 2008 - but I've been thinking a lot about her lately.

It wasn't my mom. It was a man with a strong Indian accent, and deeming from the noise in the background he was at a call center.

He said, "May I speak with Maria?"

I said, "That's me."

"I have good news for you. You are eligible for a large sum of money due to a medical procedure."

I thought, "Sure I am. I also have a pink unicorn." I said, "I doubt it."

He said, "You have had a vaginal mesh surgery, and..."

I interrupted, "No I don't. I have never had a surgery."

"You've never had a surgery? Not even one?"

This was clearly a shocking piece of news. From the tone of his voice I'm supposed to have had many. Trust me, if I had any form of mesh down there I'd know.

He tried a new approach, "Well, during your last pregnancy, did you..."

I interrupted again. "I don't have children."

"Oh, I see, so you're not eligible for that. Well, have you ever taken any antidepressants, or..."

By now I was getting good at interrupting. I said, "Why don't you just update in your records that I'm not eligible for anything and you don't have to call me again. Bye, have a good day."

I hurried to hang up before he had a chance to start talking again. In retrospect, maybe I should have tried to sell him something.

Are you also battered by phone spammers? How do you deal with it?

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