Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Crotchety 1 Telemarketers 0

I bought a timeshare in the last few months, which means every day I get a phone call asking if I’d like to sell it or buy more. And I can tell it’s the timeshare people because I have caller ID, and it’s always from a company like SwamplandinFlorida4U or EarfquakefreeCaliforniadeals. By the way, my timeshare is in NJ. Yeah, whenever I want to get away from the mundane in NJ, I just head to my timeshare unit in another part of NJ.

Don’t ask.


My beach house

The calls themselves are pretty funny. Nearly every one goes the same way.

“Hello, is this Mr. Frances?”


“Hello, Mr. Frances, would you like to sell your timeshare if I could guarantee you a nice profit?”

“No, I wouldn’t.”

“But I can guarantee you a good profit.”

“I’m not interested.“

“Would you like to buy more time, then?”

And this is the conversation that takes place every day except Sunday. Most days, it happens twice.

Now, most people would not find this conversation all that funny. I do. Reason number one, I suppose is because no one here is named Mr. or Mrs. Frances. Mrs. Crotchety’s first name is Frances, and apparently every single timeshare company employee can not read a name off a deed. I find it hilarious that among the dozens of different callers, not one has gotten our name order correct.

Until today.

Phone rings, and I didn’t answer it, as I was napping (old people nap a lot.) A minute later, phone rings again. This time I picked it up because well, my nap was already interrupted.

“Hello, is Joseph there?” Already, I realized that I may be facing the smartest telemarketer ever. I was on full alert.

“Yes, it’s me. What do you want?” I asked craftily.

“I’m returning your call.” Hmm. A new tact. I’m impressed.

“I never called you,” I countered, weakly.

“Sure, I called and left you a message, and you are returning my call.” Wow, this one is good. I clutch my checkbook more tightly. A slight sweat formed on my brow.

Quick check, and I realized she didn’t leave a message, and and she had almost convinced me that I just called her . Diabolical. She is trying to take advantage of my addled brain. But I was at the top of my game.

“No, I didn’t.” My quick wit was really kicking in, obviously.

“No, you called me,” Sally asserted. Sally was the smartest and most devious telemarketer ever. I was so impressed.

Finally, I reached down deep, and came up with the ultimate reply.

“No, I didn’t call you.”

She was beaten. I could hear the unhappiness in her voice when she realized she had tangled with the world’s greatest destroyer of telemarketers.

In a voice with just a tinge of meekness, she whispered, “Would you like to sell your timeshare if I could guarantee you a good price?”




MYM said...

Cue the music. "Gonna fly now...." lol

Chat Blanc said...

I will never tangle with you. You are the MASTER! (bows down in honor of his greatness) :)

HumorSmith said...

efective and funny....mind if I borrow your method?

Damn telemarketeers!

Unknown said...

Ok that was funny...It's so true tho.

Unknown said...

It is an honor to be in the presence of such greatness--even if only electronically.

shyne said...

Now if you could put that out on tape, you'd make a fortune from all of us telemarketer speil recipients.
Think of the time and aggravation we'd all save.

I can se it now.......my first response:
"Could you hold for just a minute?"
With a click, Crotchety picks up the conversation and I walk away from the phone, smiling.

A New Yorker said...

One of my first jobs out of college, at the bitching and moaning of my mother to take any g-d damn job (2 months after graduating I might add) was telemarketing. I hated it. I sold tickets to shows at lincoln center. I was the top sales person almost every week. It's a sucky job and the people you have to work with suck even more!

Unknown said...

Boy, they think they can get away with just anything, don't they?

At my old job a guy had called for my boss asking for him and saying it was an emergency.

He was just selling something.

Da Old Man said...

@ Drowsey: lol

@ Chat: I spend a lot of time talking to telemarketers. I've gotten good at it.

@ Humorsmith: Sure, any time

@ Dani: 100% true.

@ Fishhawk: Thank you

@ Shyne: Hmm. Just click it on and let them talk to my tape. LOL

@ lauren: I know, the job is terrible. That's why I'm always nice to telemarketers. I realize it's nearly always a person who is doing it because they have to. No one went to college hoping to one day be a telemarketer.

@ Jenn: I get annoyed by the ones who lie to get in. That's just wrong and breaks the sacred telemarketer/mark bond.

FlowerGirl said...

Haha... This is great! I like to tell them that, no, I don't want to buy whatever because I've died...

Sometimes I just ask them why they're calling me... don't you know I'm on the "do not call" list. That'll pretty much make 'em hang up in YOUR face...

Da Old Man said...

@ flowergirl: I like talking to them. My days are pretty boring.

Anonymous said...

I would like to go on the record as nominating this post for the coveted Bloggey Award!

Da Old Man said...

@ Dr. Rob: Thank you.

Anonymous said...

I once put the phoen down on a telemarker because she wouldn't take no for an answer. A minute later she called again and shouted at me for being so rude!

I then showed her just how rude I could be. ;)

Nanny Goats In Panties said...

2 words: aww sum

Matt said...

Great stuff...you really had to dig down deep for those comebacks.
I'd chalk it up to the post-nap grogginess.

Jessica said...

Found you through Lauren! :)Funny stuff, I, too, was a telemarketer once...for a dating service. Needless to say it was not fun!

TheFLy said...

Usually what happens with me is I just hang up the phone. If I accidentally answer it, I just listen for a second and click! Im not being a dick but Im really not interested.

Da Old Man said...

@ Tiggy: She called back? That is hysterical

@ Nanny: Thanks

@ Hypocritical One: Yeah, I'm not always so witty. :)

@ jessica: I know it's a tough job. That's why I try not to be rude.

@ The fly: You saved them some time, so they can call me. :)

Unknown said...

This is horrible... but...

When I was a telemarketer, I fucked with the cusutomers more than they did with me... it was how I managed to stay relatively sane.

Anonymous said...

With telemarketers I generally just listen for a second or two (to make sure it is a cold call) and then gently put the phone down face up somewhere and let them talk to themselves till they get tired.

But I'm told one amusing thing to do is to agree to everything, then when it comes to talking money, ask if they can lend you some because 'right now I'm bankrupt'.

Da Old Man said...

@ Shadow: LOL

@ jay: OMG, when PBS calls me, I give them such a tale of woe, the lady apologizes to me. PBS telemarketers are the nicest ones.

Anonymous said...

Can I buy your timeshare?

I've always wanted a reason to visit beautiful downtown Elizabeth NJ.

Da Old Man said...

@ David: My timeshare is in beautiful Atlantic City, NJ. A block from the beach, across the street from casinos.

HawgWyld said...

I've learned at least two things here:

1. I'm sending those telemarketers that need destroying to you. I'm ... just ... too ... weak ... to deal with them effectively.

2. I'm never buying a timeshare. That seems to attract more trouble than I need.

Anonymous said...

Joe, excellent post.

You could host live seminars on how to handle telemarketers. I could help you promote them all across the country. Then, you could have your phone forwarded to the venue and dazzle your audience with your ability to shut them down.

Afterwards, you could sell the tapes that Shyne suggested. It's a million dollar idea if you're up for it.

Oh, it might interupt your nap schedule though... aw shucks!

Thanks for the laugh!

Da Old Man said...

@ The Hawg: Send them to me. I love telemarketers.

@ Outside: It is tough to work around my nap schedule.

michiganderlady said...

Can I have your timeshare? I'll trade ya a stupid pink musical fountain....:)

BTW...When kiddo was little I used to hand the telemarketer calls to him. I know EVERY telemarketer wants to hear a 2 year old talk about his hot wheels. :)

Anonymous said...

LOL She was so good though.

Anonymous said...

That is hilarious, great post, I love it!!

Da Old Man said...

@ Michiganderlady: I'd rather have my week by the casinos and beach.

@ Honeywine: She was great

@ Mish: Thanks.

Vylat said...

Put them all in a stew called Ratatouille.