02 May 2012

My Spazzy Phone (Or the People Who Call It)

I can go days without getting a real text or phone call (that part about the phone calls I don't mind so much). During those hours of radio silence I sometimes check my phone compulsively every hour or so just to see if someone from the outside world has tried to make contact with me here on Planet Wadsworth.

Then there are the days (like last weekend) when I go from 20 texts in my inbox to 116 in the space of ten hours (and no, it had nothing to do with dates) and when someone is calling me every 15 minutes to make sure this and that and the other are all done and ready for a social function I am partially in charge of by default because everyone else had other plans and I happen to be the loser who didn't have any to make (love you guys, really!!).

It's kind of like my work; no steady, even pace. One week nothing. The next week I'm editing three books on top of writing articles for the LDS church and making meals, checking homework, and thinking about the boxes full of files I still need to sort through for the family business. (That's for another post).

So back to phones... it's been another one of those weeks. Except weirder. The first two days, no real contact with anyone other than a polite text here or there. Maybe a missed call from a brother.

Then yesterday afternoon I got a text and a phone call within literally 2 seconds of each other. The text was from some number I do not recognize, and when I saw the word CREDIT in big caps in my inbox window, I deleted it without looking at it. Then my phone rang (my tone is Bruce Hornsby's "The Way It Is," which is nothing to complain about); and it was another number I didn't recognize. 949-something. Well even if I know you (you who know me know this) you'll be hard pressed to get me on the first call; if I don't recognize the number I just don't pick up (how many dates has that cost me?). I figure if they're real people and actually speak my same language, and if they aren't looking for money, they'll leave a message. My mom gives me a hard time about it.

This is where I have fun sometimes, though. I never quite grew out of Nancy Drew, so I like to Google/Anywho/Intelius-search the number I just didn't answer. (You don't have to spend big bucks to be entertained!) Usually it's some Latino/Indian telemarketer (point made). But this one wasn't.

I found the funniest comment string on this number. It's supposed to be a Verizon number. A few people have gotten through to Verizon after calling it; but other people have called it and have been hung up on, have hit an answering machine in a foreign tongue, have hit a recording, have been threatened with lawsuits...the list goes on. Then someone else will get on and say "I work for Verizon, and this is a Verizon number"; the next one says "I work for Verizon, and this is definitely not a Verizon number; don't pick up, and don't give any account information over the phone!" 1st Verizon tech gets on and says "eat it; it's not a conspiracy; get over yourself," and 2nd Verizon tech replies "beat it; it is a conspiracy!!!"—"No it's not; there are other more exciting things out there than your money"—"Name 5!" And on and on and on.

I lean more toward the conspiracy side when it comes to numbers I don't recognize (like I said, Nancy Drew; I always thought George Fay was the cooler of her two sidekicks, by the way. I wanted to be George and get Ned. For those of you who haven't read the books, George is a female, and "George" is a nickname). So I laughed and didn't call the number back. I don't want an answering machine or a recording in a foreign tongue, I definitely don't want to get threatened with a lawsuit...and I had no reason to talk to Verizon even if it was the company.

I thought that was the end of it. But three hours later I get another call from—you guessed it—a number I don't recognize. This one had an area code I recognized, though, so I decided to wait for a message. None came through. So I got out my Intelius magnifying glass and went snooping online, tracing the number to Salt Lake City (I don't pay the big bucks to actually figure out who belongs to the phone number; if I can't find it on Google, I don't worry about it). I don't know anyone in Salt Lake who would want to call me, but I have connections there, so this number confused me a little. But I'm smarter than Nancy Drew and have a healthy sense of caution/self-preservation/laziness. I put down my phone and walked away.

An hour later the same number called. And left no message. I'm weirded out. Evidently it's a real person, but a strange real person who, if he doesn't get through to the girl on the second time still won't leave a voicemail.

Then this morning I got two texts from Verizon about my dad's phone plan. I don't get it. Are they all connected in some bizarre, sinister (or not) way? End of story? I'll let you know if the mysterious Salt Lake City real person calls back. And actually leaves a message. Or if I throw that healthy sense of caution to the wind and call him (to call him a her would be boring) back. Or if they call back a third time and leave a message saying I just won a trip to somewhere exotic to spend a romantic dinner with some foreign, desirable, long-locked, brown-eyed, white-smiled celebrity who wants to talk about my in-progress book and about me writing the screenplay first and having him play the lead role—next to me, of course...


  1. Hahaha! What an adventure! Keep us posted :) I want to know why this keeps happening!

  2. Haha I'll let you know! It'll likely turn out to be completely anti-climactic.


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