A post by my mate Lulu over at A Family Affair made me wonder if I"m the only one who does what I do. Lulu is talking about pretending you're not at home when someone calls at the house; hiding behind the curtains and that sort of thing. I am actually surprised these people don't ring before they make the effort to visit. I can't remember the last time I had a drop-in visitor.
Anyway, my comment on her post was a little off at a tangent as it referred to cold calls or telemarketing calls. Not only do I have caller ID, where I can see the number and sometimes the name of who's calling, because my TV and telephone company are one and the same, the caller's information also comes up on my TV screen. In our house, when the phone rings, we all rush to look at the TV screen which must confuse the heck out of guests.
Quick story - the first time the phone-number-on-the-screen thing happened, I was a) unaware of this new service and b) watching Wimbledon tennis. My neighbor rang and his number popped up on the screen. Utter confusion. How could he possibly be in Wimbledon when I saw him in the corner shop less than three hours ago?
Where was I? Oh yes, so when a tele-marketer calls with a dodgy phone number, I usually just don't answer. Every so often though, they will cleverly use a local number and I pick up, thinking that it could be well, anyone local. Then I hear that tell-tale 5-10 second pause which tells me I'm about to be asked for money or sold something. "May I speak to Antonia" is the opening salvo, immediately identifying the caller as one of the old nuns from school come back to haunt me, or someone who has no idea who I really am otherwise they would never use my "real" name. So I simply say "No, not at the moment, may I take a message", and of course there is never a message.
Sometimes I get caught out though, like the other day when the Physical Therapist's receptionist called. I was in my bedroom, where the phone is neither use nor ornament and doesn't have caller ID, so I picked up. (Whenever I ignore a call it's always the school nurse.) Young lady's voice asked for Antonia, so as usual, I said No I wasn't there, took the number and then thought "Now what?" I could hardly call straight back with the same voice and accent, as if I hadn't just told a huge porkie pie (lie) only three seconds before. So I waited half an hour (which is very dangerous given my memory) and called back using a deeper tone of voice. I would have changed my accent too but given that I have to go there for the next 6 weeks, I was concerned about being busted. (Like the girl would ever remember that I had changed my voice!)
Please tell me I'm not the only one who does this.