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Dishonest phone calls can bring instant dislike

November 18, 2012
Messenger News

Whatever happened to that do-not-call deal, that's what I want to know.

It's as if people feel free to call just because they know your number and want to call. And it didn't stop when the insidious political calls stopped, either. Oh, no, the torture continues. Just the other day some disembodied voice asked if I was a senior.

I figured it was none of her business and slammed down the phone. I've got to learn to pull my fingers away before the receiver hits the cradle.

The calls I really dislike are those asking for Walt. "May I speak to him?" she asks. "No," I answer. When she keeps asking, I want to reach through the phone and remove her tonsils through her nose.

When I say that aloud, it really sounds bad.

I remember the time Mom got a phone call for Dad maybe 10 years, give or take, after he died. The man tried to sound all chummy, as if he and Dad were long-lost buddies.

"You don't know him," Mom said.

"Sure I do," this man replied. "We went to high school together."

Dad quit school after the eighth grade.

Which leads to my soapbox rant for the week. Why do people lie? It drives me crazy. A stupid automated phone call is one thing, but for someone who clearly wants to sell you something to lie about a relationship is ridiculous.

They've got to know not everyone is going to talk to them - just get it over and get on.

"Hi. I'm - whoever it is - and I'm wondering if you need new windows. Life insurance. Yard cleaning. Whatever." Tell them who you are and what you're selling, then go on to find someone else if that person says no. It's simple.

Selling is a tough job, and it takes a special kind of person to do well. It's too bad the good people have to carry the cross for the sleezies.

OK, that's done.

So, how are you this morning? It's supposed to be nice, I think. That, in itself, is a good thing, but what's really a good thing is we're just four days before Thanksgiving. The nice weather will make it rougher for the horse to carry the sleigh through the white and drifting snow, but that's something we can live with.

As much as I dream of going on a hay ride - a real hay ride with straw on a flatbed trailer - it's also a dream to go on a sleigh ride in weather so cold your nose frosts on the inside and your fingers ache, but you're huddled under blankets so heavy and warm the cold air can't penetrate.

One year Walt took me on a sleigh ride for our anniversary, and we planned a nice meal afterward. He misunderstood the pricing, however, and his hour ride took all the money we had on us. We had to go home for food.

That didn't matter. Strange people didn't make irritating phone calls back then.

So long friends, until the next time when we're together.

Sandy Mickelson, retired lifestyle editor of The Messenger, may be reached at



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