Rude Phone Retorts

I used to have quite a cache of them in my head, ready to use at the drop of a phone receiver … or rather, just before.

But time and the no-call list have eroded the cache, and I’d like to think that a kinder, gentler nature emerging in me has helped wipe out a few of them.

Before all of that, there was I time when I did not hesitate to answer the incessant, invasive ding-a-lings:

“Well, if you knew it was a wrong number, why did you dial it?”

“Fascinating as it sounds to spend hours trapped in Nowhere, Florida listening to some failure-in-life raving about the features of the time-share condo you wish to saddle me and my progeny with forever, I’m afraid I shall have to decline your kind invitation.”

“Did you just belch while you were talking to me? Just now? Did you? How rude! Don’t you ever dare to call this number again. I have caller ID and I am not too proud to deliver a world-shuddering belch in response to your rudeness. You’re just lucky I haven’t had a carbonated beverage for the last several hours.”

“That’s really interesting, but … do you like the sound of my voice? I mean, do you find it pleasant? Would you say even attractive? Could you go so far as to describe it as irresistible?”

“Yes; right. Listen, do you actually get paid to do this or do you just enjoy annoying people?”

“Oh, thank you for calling. I’m not really interested in what you’re saying but I don’t have any friends and the friends I do have don’t call anymore and sometimes it’s just so reassuring to hear another human voice after talking to no one but my cats all day and night ….”

“Uh-huh. If your supervisor is handy, would you tell them something for me? Would you tell them that you’re quitting this dead-end job and finding a real career position somewhere you can actually help people, and put your God-given talents to good use benefitting humanity and if your supervisor isn’t a complete idiot, that perhaps he or she should fire the whole lot of you and you could all go job-hunting together like real colleagues in a support group, you know?”

“No, I’m sorry. They don’t live here anymore. We killed them and buried them under the … but perhaps I’ve taken enough of your time already.”

Those were the days. But they’re gone, and good riddance. Time to get those nasty retorts out of my head and tell them good-bye and put them here in pixels.

(Just in case those good old days decide they want to call back.)

9 thoughts on “Rude Phone Retorts

  1. Ahhh a kindred spirit. I have dozens of them. One of Kim’s favorites was a “lifestyle survey” my reply Naked. The girl said “What?” I replied “Naked, that’s my lifestyle. That should answer any question you have.” and then there’s the time I told about my sex change operation.And occasionally I used my brother-in-laws favorite technique. Caller rambling about whatever and you say “UUUUUUNNNNNNNNNN” wait a few seconds…. “UUUUUUNNNNNNN” They may ask if you are ok. your reply “I’ve got this really bad diarea but what your saying sounds so important I can UUUUUUNNNNNNN. They usually hang up at this point.

  2. You’re right: I don’t really miss the days before the no-call list. But, to make things interesting, I too would use items from my own cache of responses.I liked pretending I knew the caller: “Wow, Janet. I haven’t seen you since that picnic at Uncle Mort’s.”“I don’t have an Uncle Mort.”“How long did it take you to recover after drinking Mort’s cup of tobbacco juice?”“But, I didn’t…”“Boy, you turned as green as a watermelon.”“But, I want to talk…”“Yeah, how’s your brother. What’s his name?” And on it would go for as long as I could carry it.I tried the “He’s dead.” line once, but I felt guilty afterwards. Now the only ones who call are charitable organizations.

  3. I usually say, “Ohhh, that really sounds interesting… but I have some religious convictions that make that impossible. If you have a few minutes I would like to tell you about them.”They never have the time. Too bad.

  4. My favorite was, “The Coroner just got here and I can’t talk right now”?Or just lay the phone down and walk away. Some of those guys would go on and on and on.

  5. We learned right off that if there is a hesitation when we answer the phone, it is a computer generated call. We just hang up before they have the chance to say anything. My favorite though is this one:Could you hold just a minute? Then let them hold the line for at least five minutes. When you go back, say that is how I feel when you call! but usually they are not there any longer, anyway. They don’t seem to call back either!

  6. One of my elders back in WV used to be in a barbership quartet. Whenever a phone solicitor would call, he would talk to them about a new song he was working on and sing it to them, getting their opinion… going on and on regardless of what they wanted to say or sell. It was hilarious.

  7. All you guys are funny. I think my favorite is bob’s about having religious convictions he wants to talk about. Not a bad idea, actually, however the other party answers. I mean – it sounds like a win/win situation to me. If they hesitate at you saying that, just keep talking seriously about Christianity.If they chime back in wanting to talk on themselves, turn the heat up even more seriously or jump in with some fake rant.Either way – hey – THEY called you. They deserve it.Although TCS’s first idea is hilarious and should be a survey stopper. And I like Ray’s pretending they know each other. That’s a good one, too.Me – I don’t have the patience any more (we’ve got caller ID now – AND a totally unlisted number, thankfully) so don’t hear much before I chime in and say “Thanks anyway (I’m ever polite), but we’re not interested” and immediately hang up, even if they’re still talking. On the other hand – when I’M the one calling companies, entities, etc, whoever in conducting business or seeking information or whatever – I will always ask the person their name (most times they give it to you when they answer, but I don’t always hear it or understand it – getting a little hard of hearing here in my “old age”) and where they’re located.I’ve carried on some really great conversations with a lot of people that way, made some good “connections” and with a couple have even ended up telling them to email us (if they already have our email address, anyway) about something we’ve talked about (like so I can give them a website or something). At the very least, I always enjoy talking with them and always end by wishing them a good day or God’s blessings or something.I can’t tell you how many times I’ve talked at length with people in doing business over the phone and have wished them well – sometimes about specific things in their own lives. The way I look at it is that this world has become so very impersonable, we need to cultivate that human contact and interaction as much as possible. But that’s only when I’M doing the one calling and have the time to do it. The ones calling here – forget it!

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