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Opinion

Know Your Neighbors: In Honor of Neighbors Who Were Tortured, We Must Never Again Use 'Enhanced Interrogation Techniques'

Know Your Neighbors: In Honor of Neighbors Who Were Tortured, We Must Never Again Use 'Enhanced Interrogation Techniques'

Wednesday, December 17, 2014  |  Anita Rufus

In the wake of the release of the Senate Intelligence Committee’s “Torture Report” on the “enhanced interrogation techniques” used by the Central Intelligence Agency in the wake of Sept. 11, I was reminded that I once had the privilege of meeting one of the “Lost Boys of Sudan”  at an event in San Die...

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Ask a Mexican: It's the Mexican's Annual Gift Guide!

Ask a Mexican: It's the Mexican's Annual Gift Guide!

Wednesday, December 17, 2014  |  Gustavo Arellano

Gentle cabrones : Behold, it’s my annual Mexican Christmas guide, where I recommend the best Mexi-themed libros for you to give to your loved ones this Navidad instead of yet another tamale to unwrap.

Lowriting: Shots, Rides and Stories From the Chicano Soul : A stunning collection of lowrider photos by Los ...

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Remembering Robert Stearns: The Local Arts Community Has Lost One of Its Biggest Advocates With the Passing of ArtsOasis' Executive Director

Remembering Robert Stearns: The Local Arts Community Has Lost One of Its Biggest Advocates With the Passing of ArtsOasis' Executive Director

Tuesday, December 16, 2014  |  David Clinton-Reid

Robert Stearns, the executive director of ArtsOasis , passed away Wednesday, Dec. 3, after a brief illness.

There is so much to say about my dear friend and colleague. Robert (pictured to the right, in a photo from last year) graduated from the University of California at San Diego in fine arts and art...

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The Potted Desert Garden: It's Not Too Cool for Summer Foliage

The Potted Desert Garden: It's Not Too Cool for Summer Foliage

Tuesday, December 16, 2014  |  Marylee Pangman

Why am I talking about summer foliage in December?

You might find some of these plants in local nurseries now, and because of our mild winters, many of these summer plants can survive here year-round. You might consider experimenting with these choices, thereby easing your planting woes next spring w...

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The Weekly Independent Comics Page for Dec. 11, 2014!

The Weekly Independent Comics Page for Dec. 11, 2014!

Thursday, December 11, 2014  |  Staff

On this week's frosty Independent comics page: This Modern World learns some right-wing lessons; Jen Sorenson examines sexism at a Princeton eating club; The K Chronicles listens to some voices in the protest crowds; and Red Meat puts on some Mexican wrestling moves.

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Ask a Mexican: Should I Be Worried About My Tias' Lack of Interest in Me?

Ask a Mexican: Should I Be Worried About My Tias' Lack of Interest in Me?

Wednesday, December 10, 2014  |  Gustavo Arellano

Dear Mexican: I’m a third-year university student, a liberal studies and Spanish major. My family, extended and immediate, always like the chisme . During a family carne asada, we were all talking when one of my tías asked me what I was doing with my life—she and the rest of my aunts seemed like they ge...

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Tuesday, 30 October 2012 08:00

Annoyed by Telemarketers? Get Even!

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(Editor's note: This was written by yours truly 14 years ago. [Gack, I feel old now.] We're posting it here, now, because in this age of annoying political phone calls, it still rings true, even if the reference to a CD club is just a touch outdated. Anyhoo, enjoy!)

Zzzzzzzzzz. I am very asleep. It is quite warm in this bed, and I am very, very asleep. I love sleeping in. Aaaahhhhh ...

"RIIIIIING!" says the phone. I jolt awake, and start cussing out the phone and the dweeb on the other end who dares to call me at this sort-of early weekend hour.

"RIIIIIING!" the phone insists. I decide to answer it, because I am awake now. Dammit.

"Hello?" I ask, wishing that visions of sugarplums (or whatever) were still dancing in my head.

"Hi! Mr. Blegle? My name is Mort, and I am calling to offer you eight FREE CDs if you join our music club."

"Um ... huh?" is my witty retort.

"Yes, that's right!" says Mort, who is trying really hard to sound enthusiastic, but is not quite pulling it off. "All you have to do is agree to buy three CDs at regular prices over the next year, and we'll send you eight free CDs of your choice NOW! What do you think, Mr. Blegle?"

"Bite me, Mort."

I hang up, and lay back in bed. I am awake now. Dammit, Mort.

I am too awake now to resume my peaceful slumber, and too disgruntled to yet start my day, so I just lay in bed and think of ways to get back at the Morts of the world ... those we call TELEMARKETERS.

I plot; I scheme. Over the next few days, I come up with some ways to get back a little at telemarketers. I thought I would share a few of these ideas; while they may not get rid of telemarketers, at least they'll make your dealings with telemarketers more enjoyable...

1. Come on to the telemarketer. I just think of the fun I could have had messing with Mort's head if I had thought of this earlier...

Me: Hello?

Mort: Hi! Mr. Blegle? My name is Mort, and I am calling to offer you eight FREE CDs if you join our music club.

Me (with a low, passionate voice): Ooh, Mort. What are you wearing?

Mort (clearly confused): Yes, that's ri ... WHAT?

Me: (in a low, soft tone): Oh, Mort, your voice is soooo sexy. I feel I should tell you I am not wearing any pants. Hmmmm ...

Mort: GAAACK! Click!

At least, this is how the come-on technique should work. That telemarketing company will probably never call you back again, unless it is run by blatant perverts. But be careful; there's always a chance that Mort, if a blatant pervert, will enjoy your advances. This could be a real problem if he lives locally, because he has your phone number.

This technique may also seem a bit weird and too close to home if, like me the other morning, you really aren't wearing pants.

2. Talk like those teachers in the Peanuts television specials. This technique of annoying telemarketers is sure to confuse the telemarketer, and there is a much smaller chance that it will arouse the telemarketer. That is, unless he or she is a blatantly blatant pervert ...

Mort: Hi! Mr. Blegle? My name is Mort, and I am calling to offer you eight FREE CDs if you join our music club.

Me: Waaa! Waaa waa? Waa wa wa wa waaaaa!:

Mort: Excuse me?

Me: Waaa wa wa wa waaaaaaaaaaaaaaa!

Mort: Mr. Blegle, I am sorry we must have a bad connection. I'll try and call back.

Me: Waaaaa. No pants! Waaaa.

3. Act like you and a close personal friend are ... well, you know. But once again, you must be concerned about the pervert factor....

Mort: Hi! Mr. Blegle? My name is Mort, and I am calling to offer you eight FREE CDs if you join our music club.

Me: Oh GOD! Oh, yes yes yes yes yes YES!

Mort: Gosh, Mr Blegle, that sure is a enthusiastic response!

Me (Gasping for air): Oh, please, yes. Yes! Harder!

Mort: Well, Mr Blegle! I will get your first CD out to you right ... harder?

Me: Oh, BABY! Yes! Harder! Harder!

Mort: WHAT???? Are you OK, Mr. Blegle?

Me: YES!!!!

4. Try and sell the telemarketer something yourself. This is sure to confuse him or her (and it's especially fun if you try to sell something that's actually free).

Mort: Hi! Mr. Blegle? My name is Mort, and I am calling to offer you eight FREE CDs if you join our music club.

Me: Wow! That's spiffy. Mort, can I call you Morty?

Mort: Why ... um, I guess.

Me: Let me tell you, Morty... right now, you can subscribe to the Coachella Valley Independent online for only $18 for three months! Ain't that a deal?

Mort: What? The Cockroach Velveeta who? No... I am trying to sell memberships to the CD club, and --

Me: But, Morty, buddy ... that's a quarter of a year for a mere 18 smackers? Come on, my friend.

Mort: I have to go. I am not wearing any pants! Click.

Now, these are just a few suggestions on how to mess with telemarketers. You, too, can come up with other ideas on how to deal with them, such as calling them to repentance (ADMIT you're a sinner, Mort) or pretending to speak only Pig Latin (Ite-bay e-may, Mort!).

Just whatever you do... have fun. Even if it's early, and you are blatantly without pants.

1 comment

  • Comment Link E. L. Tosi Wednesday, 31 October 2012 19:18 posted by E. L. Tosi

    Very good advice! I must try some of the lines when called late at night.

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