Telemarketers Versus Religion

| Working | January 27, 2015

(I stay at a rental beach house with my boyfriend and his family, as well as a friend of his younger sister’s. My boyfriend, his two siblings, his sister’s friend, and I are all in the living room when the phone rings. We all just kind of look at each other, and assuming it’s a telemarketer, I eagerly get up to answer.)

Me: “Hello?”

(The telemarketer goes into his speech about long-distance service, not even asking if I’m the head of house or old enough to make that kind of decision.)

Me: “This is a beach house.”

Telemarketer: “Are you happy with your current long-distance service?”

Me: “We don’t have a phone.”

Telemarketer: “Uh… excuse me?”

Me: “We don’t have a phone. We don’t believe in phones. You see, we’re Mormon.”

Telemarketer: “What?”

Me: *click*

(Everyone had contained their laughter until I hung up. For the rest of the week, we made excuses about not doing things ‘because I’m Mormon.’)

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Insecure International Dialling

| Working | January 24, 2015

(Because I lived in the US for a while, I have a US-based Skype phone number. However, I have since returned to the UK. I receive this call:)

Automated Message: “If you are the homeowner, you are eligible for free installation of a full home security system, with local 24/7 monitoring! If you are interested in this offer, please press 1.”

Me: *to friend* “Got nothing better to do right now.” *presses 1*

Agent: “Thank you for your interest. Can you confirm that you are the homeowner?”

Me: “I am.”

Agent: “Excellent.”

(They then proceed to explain all the benefits of their security system, making particular emphasis on the local-ness of their monitoring centres.)

Agent: “Now, sir, do you have any questions?”

Me: “Yes, actually. I was wondering if you could tell me exactly where your local monitoring station is.”

Agent: “Sure. Where do you live?”

Me: “Slough.”

Agent: “What state is that in?”

Me: “England.”

(They hung up immediately, and my friend and I laughed for hours!)

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This Parrot Is Sketchy

| Working | January 18, 2015

(My grandmother died on April 9th, of natural causes. My grandfather then died on April 10th, the day after, also of natural causes. My family is clearing out their condo because we have only until the 30th to do so. The phone in their house starts ringing.)

Aunt: *picks up the phone* “Hello?”

Telemarketer: “I need to speak to [Grandmother] or [Grandfather].”

Aunt: “I’m sorry, but they’re deceased.”

Telemarketer: “I need to speak to one of them.”

Aunt: “You can’t; they’re both deceased.”

(This goes back and forth a couple of times, my aunt keeping her cool, which is surprising because she isn’t known for her tolerance of stupidity.)

Telemarketer: “I don’t think you understand; I need to talk to [Grandmother] or [Grandfather]!”


Telemarketer: “…” *click*

My Aunt: “B**** hung up on me!”

(No sorry for your loss or anything!)

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Breaking Down The Break-In

| Working | January 13, 2015

(I live in the UK, but I have a US-based Skype phone number. Consequently, I occasionally get plagued with telemarketers. In this case, the automated message told me that there was a break-in in my neighbourhood, and that they could offer me a home security system. I decided to press ‘1’ to be connected with an agent. After verifying that I’m the homeowner:)

Agent: “Okay, the reason for this call is that we have a promotion on a new home security system.”

Me: “So there hasn’t been a break-in?”

Agent: “What?”

Me: “The automated message said that there was a break-in. That’s why I pressed ‘1’ to talk to you.”

Agent: “Oh, well, actually it’s because we have this promotion…”

Me: “So basically you lied to me to get me to press ‘1.’ There was no break-in.”

Agent: “Well, who’s to say there hasn’t been a break-in in your area?”

Me: “The lack of police sirens?”

(They hung up.)

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How To Win The War Against Telemarketers, Part 6

, | Working | November 30, 2014

(My fiance comes in the house on the phone with someone who we assume is a bill collector. He has already been on the phone with the guy for 25 minutes and the bill collector is clearly annoyed, but has yet to hang up. My fiance puts the phone on speaker.)

Bill Collector: “Sir, we just need to verify your name and address.”

Me: “Why do you need his name and address?”

Bill Collector: “We have already been through this. I cannot tell you why until I verify who I am talking to.”

Me: “So, you’re a collection company?”

Bill Collector: “No. I’m from [Collection Company] and I just want to verify an address.”

Me: “It says online that you’re a collection company.”

Bill Collector:“We have a collections department, but I’m not in the collections department.”

Me: “You know we’re on the ‘Do Not Call List,’ right? If you’re not a bill collector then you’re a solicitor and shouldn’t be calling us.”

Bill Collector: “None of this is relevant. We can end this conversation now if you just tell me if you are [Fiancé] and what your address is.”

Me: “Well, you still haven’t told us why you need to know this information.”

Bill Collector: “I told you. I cannot tell you this until I know if I am speaking to [Fiancé].

Me: “Funny. The only legal reason I can think of for you needing to know whether you’re speaking with [Fiancé] is to collect on a bill.”

Bill Collector: *irate* “We’ve been through this. I’m not calling from a collection company. Just tell me if you’re [Fiancé] and what your address is and we’ll be done here.”

Me: “So, you still haven’t told us why you need that information.”

Bill Collector: “Tell you what, I’m going to take you off our list.” *hangs up*

Fiance: *looking at his phone* “33 minutes.”

Me: “I was impressed by his dedication.”


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