But It’s Unlisted!

When I was in 7th grade my friends and I made a daily habit of crank-calling people. We’d congregate around the white Panasonic speakerphone and dial local numbers randomly. We’d usually keep it to a few prefixes that we were familiar with. We had a few routines that were fun. I liked to start out the conversation by asking them who THEY were. Which is why, to this day, if a caller begins the call with “Hi, who is this?” I always respond, “I give up.”


[ring ring]
“Hi, who’s this?”
“This is Dorothy, who is this?”
“This is Mike.”
“Oh hi, Mike!”


Everybody knew a Mike.


But one of my favorite exchanges would go something like this:


[ring ring]
“Hi [blah blah blah, crank call scheme, blah blah blah, we laugh]”
“Who is this? How did you get this number?”
“What do you mean how did I get this number?”
“How did you get this number? This phone # is unlisted!”
“We dialed it randomly.”
“But it’s unlisted!”
“So how did you call me?”
“What do you mean? We dialed you randomly.”
“Tell me how you got this number.”
“I did tell you. I don’t think that you understand the concept of random.”
“Don’t you be smart with me!”
“We live in your area code. We picked a prefix and then dialed four random numbers.”
“But this phone number is unlisted!”
“Okay. Well, we were able to get through, sooo…”
“I don’t know who you are or how you got this number, but I don’t want you ever calling here again! And I’m going to have this phone number changed!”


This happened on many occasions. Ah, sophisticated adults!


[c] 2009 Russ of America



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