The Telephonic Jihad


So it’s the Saturday morning before Thanksgiving, and I get a call. It’s a local area code, and a local prefix – bur, surprise! It’s Rachel from Cardholder Services again. That Rachel owns a lot of phone numbers, doesn’t she? Well, no. They have some way of spoofing the caller ID and making you think the call is local when it’s not.

Rachel (if that’s her real name) is doing her spiel, and you get the option off pressing 1 to talk to an operator for some credit rigmarole you can’t see but can only hear, or 9 not to. I press 9 and get a live operator. The live operator I get is some sort of foreign comedian, who tells me I’m going to get these calls the rest of my life. In my Saturday morning haze, it triggers my temper that friends say I rarely show.

I tell Mr. Comedian, “Bring it on!”

Well, not entirely true. I use a word after that sentence that begins with “mother” and rhymes with “plucker” if you get my drift. Mr. Comedian goes on and on, so I put the phone down and walk around silently, knowing that will get him to hang up. It eventually does.

Why did I engage this bovine excrement artist? Well, if we all did that, these people would be slowed down. For any minute they spend with us and we turn around and waste their time, that’s probably one less call they can make. Engage them. Hell, put the phone down when they start talking if you want.

If they don’t play fair, why should we?

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