We Had No ID Who Was Calling

In our home, dinosaurs still roam. I’m not afraid to admit it: we still use a landline. We like the reliability, and the cool fact that it almost never drops a call. And yes, we have an answering machine too. When I’m not looking for a job (which is pretty much all the time), our answering machine greeting is recreation for my inner child.

For example, if you call, you might hear something like: “I HAVE PICKLES IN MY NOSTRILS FOR YOUUUUU!!” This one, of course is sung loudly to the tune of “I have pickles in my nostrils for you.”

Another might be a rather forceful announcement like: “This machine is for singing!! Please begin singing after the tone!!”

And I change the greeting regularly.

Anyway, those who know us will leave a message. Those who don’t, well we don’t care! For many moons, we used the answering machine to screen our calls. Seems like telemarketing calls are becoming more and more numerous; and we just don’t like being bothered. Rather than get annoyed at the poor person who calls (they are just trying to earn a living), we just got to a point where we quit answering until the answering machine kicks in. If we recognize the caller, we quick pick up and say hi.

We finally got some caller ID compatible phones a couple years ago. However, when I went to activate this on our landline, the nice phone company person told me there would be a charge for it. That was completely unacceptable… I mean sheesh!! We pay enough for unlimited long distance and all that. Mind you, I do technology stuff for a living; and I knew full well that caller ID was already present in the landline techno-universe. So, I passed.

Enter the 2016 elections. Holy MOLY we got bombarded with calls!! Since I hadn’t thought much about caller ID for a few years, I thought I’d call the phone company again and see what was up. Lo and behold, there was no longer a fee for caller ID!! So fiddle dee dee, we have caller ID!! And this pleases me!!

Those marketer kids are naughty… they have software that will fake your area code so it looks like the call is coming from somewhere nearby. And for some reason, the calls always get dropped before the answering machine turns on!! That’s just fine with us.

Every once in awhile though, I get to feeling a bit playful. I’ll answer the call and be completely silly, which of course drives the caller a bit nuts.

“Hello Sir, I’m calling to warn you that your Microsoft certificate is about to expire.”

“Oh my!! What do I do??”

“Well sir, are you near your computer?? And is it turned on?“

“Yes, yes I am!1” I tell them, but of course I’m not near and it isn’t on.

“OK Sir, I want you to press the following keys so I may troubleshoot…”

I don’t give them the chance to finish and I blurt out, “OH NO!! Do you see my screen?? WHAT ARE YOU DOING??? I DON’T THINK I LIKE THIS!!”

**CLICK** Oh darn, they hung up.

Another caller fell victim to my silliness recently…

“Hello sir, I’m doing a customer service survey and I’d like to ask you…”

I interrupt: “Pizza??”

“No no sir, this is a customer service survey. I’m not trying to sell you any food or other…”

“Well I’m pretty hungry, I’m hoping for some pizza!!”

“Sir!! Is there anyone in your home 18 or older I can speak to??”

“Oh yes, my cat!! I’ll go get him for you!!”

**CLICK** Oh darn, another hang up.

Anyway, we really like caller ID. Come to find out, there’s a telecommunications expert who is providing a service to intercept telemarketers before they even get to your phone!! And they record the call, which can be very amusing.

Please enjoy the video that explains…