Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Tilted Windmills

I just finished reading Nature Girl, written by one of my favorite authors, Carl Hiaasen. In this particular story, Hiaasen took a swing at a major pet peeve -- the telemarketing industry. It wasn't until the last page was turned that I realized, oh hell! I don't get telemarketing calls since I put myself on the National Do Not Call registry.

You would think, wouldn't you, the dearth of annoying, invasive calls is a Good Thang? And it is. It really is. It's just that Hiaasen's heroine had so much FUN sockin' to the slime-bucket phone solicitor, I found myself actually missing the opportunity to play with telemarketing heads.

Not that I did much playing before the Do Not Call signup. Because the calls almost always came at inconvenient times, I was in the habit of simply saying, "Please take me off your list," and hanging up so I could get back to whatever was being so rudely interrupted. Although there was one memorable call that came in during a football game. "Are you out of your mind?" I screeched. "You're interrupting Monday Night Football!"

Barbarians at the gates, that's what.

I can't help feeling a bit wistful about the missed opportunities. In between calls, I imagined all sorts of wicked things to say to unsuspecting solicitors. Sometimes I was convinced I could singlehandedly -- or single-mouthed -- bring the telemarketing industry to its knees. Trouble is, every time one of those durned calls came in, I was too distracted to remember my evil intentions and I let them slip away.

Ah well. I'm sure somewhere out there, more worthy windmills are waiting to be tilted. All I have to do is identify them and then plot the attack. Right after I sharpen my trusty lance.


Anonymous said...

Over here, now they can't call you, they come knocking at the door. Which is more fun, because you can be dismissive face-to-face. I operate a golden rule: Never buy anything on the doorstep or as the result of any kind of cold call. Tell 'em so, straight out. If they carry on then you have a clear mandate to be rude... if you're so inclined. :-)

Anonymous said...

We are not only on the National but we pay the State a couple bucks for so many years to be on theirs.

But you know what? We still get campaign calls because the lawmakers exempted themselves! And those are recordings usually. :-(

Also we get the survey or charity type calls. Always at inconveint times.

Oh and finally I got a Blufr right.

Unknown said...

Maybe playing with a telemarketer's mind works because I did just that with my last one and I can't recall having gotten a call since. Well, except from my mortgage company who keeps trying to sell me more insurance. I figure I gotta be polite to them because they are holding the papers to my house.

Dee said...

Ah, John ... I don't get any solicitors at the door except representatives of a certain earnest religion hellbent on saving my soul. They have a neat ploy worked out wherein they always arrive with young children in tow so victims cannot be rude or cross, even when sorely tried.

Bonnie, I, too, get the calls from the exempt groups but, as you say, most are recorded. Makes it easy to just hang up. (Congrats on the Bluf'r score!)

Jo, it's always good to be aware of which side is spread with butter. (grin)

Anonymous said...

My husband does the 'holler loudly' thing. I just hang up unless I am feeling ornery, and then I interrupt them and tell them how bad I have it in retirement, and will they please send me some extra money, please, please, please. kdip

Anonymous said...

What a hoot! I, too, had forgotten about the telemarketers because we are on the do not call list plus we have privacy manager for all the rest. So, I don't get those calls either. To think of all the fun I am missing.