Mintron: Defender of the Phone System

While I mostly love my job, there is a downside to answering the phones. Sometimes, we get crazy people who try and tell us that pig shit is falling from the sky and want us to do something about it. Two years ago, I hung up on a rude telemarketer who had the nerve to call me back and bitch me out for hanging up on him while he was in mid-sentence (as if telemarketers deserve any respect for selling their souls). When I told him he better watch out or I’ll send Bun Bun after him, he said to me, “Fuck off you fucking BITCH. I don’t want to sell you anything but my ass. You deserve to eat the shit out of my toilet.”

We also had a marathon ordeal with one lunatic who called herself Liba (after her sign, Libra). She needed us to give her a free trip to Israel so she could move there and fulfill the mission her spirit guides assigned to her: setting up an electrolysis business that would offer palmistry and other psychic advice while hairy Israeli women were waiting for their appointments (or maybe it was during their electrolysis sessions- we never did piece together the story from all of her babblings).

But more often than I would like, we get really bitchy people who have no manners. Sometimes they’re hoary Orthodox Jews who are pissed at me because they believe it’s my fault there aren’t enough kosher eateries in Seattle. Other times, it’s people who are just generally condescending and rude, such as today:

It started off like any typical hour during work. The phone started to ring and one of our five lines lit up. With the phone answering reflexes one develops over time, I snatched up the receiver and answered with my typical, “Good afternoon, Place of Work

“Hi, is this Mindy?” a middle-aged woman asked.

“Yes, this is her.”

“Hi Mindy, how are you doing?” she said, rather than asked, with a condescending tone to her voice.

“I’m good, and you?”

“It’s ‘I’m doing well’, not ‘I’m good’.” She followed this immediately with raucous laughter that left me staring at the wall blankly wishing she was talking to me in person so I could deliver one of my perfected Ice Queen stares of doom.

“Excuse me?” I had to settle with an Ice Queen tone of doom.

She then stopped laughing and launched into a lecture on phone grammar. “Proper grammar is important when answering phones,” she said. I agreed with her, but I also didn’t want a condescending lecture by someone I didn’t know. Angered and insulted, I stopped listening at this point as she went on to explain the details of her phone etiquette and some nonsensical reasoning why I was in the wrong.

I decided to cut her off and try the even angrier Ice Queen tone of instant death. “Excuse me?” I repeated, sending waves of ice shards through the receiver.“You said that already.”I realized this woman was a tough bitch who probably possessed Ice Queen immunity based on her already shocking display of rudeness. I changed tactics, this time following the fight fire with fire philosophy. “Just who are you?” I asked her in my best mimic of the condescending tone possessed by rich people who think their importance to the world is directly related to the digits of their available sum at the bank.“Oh, I’m Sharon F. This is Mindy G., right?”“No, it’s not.” I said curtly.“But you said you were Mindy.”

“I am Mindy. The Mindy you’re looking for is a volunteer for Place of Work, but I’m employed here.” At this point, she had activated the “Mega Bitch” mode of my self-defense mood system. I couldn’t hold back any longer. “If you’re just going to ask for ‘Mindy’ then everyone will to assume you’re asking for me. Do you understand that there is more than one person by the name of Mindy in this world?”

“Well, we’re working on a program together, may I speak with her?” I was astounded.- it was as if she was immune to everything I attacked her with. How could a foe withstand my Ice Queen attacks and Mega Bitch vibes?

I decided a rapid bombardment of my special combo attack, MEGA BITCHY ICE QUEEN, would weaken her defenses and possibly leave a lingering and undetectable side effect that would ruin the rest of her work day, and hopefully last into the rush hour drive home, resulting in an accident which would hopefully severely damage the exterior of her car and result in substantial insurance hikes. “No, you may not. I can take a message for you.”

“Why can’t I speak with her?”

“Because she’s not here right now.” I said, continuing the bombardment of my special combo attack.

“Well, when will she be in?”

“Since she doesn’t work here, I have no idea when she’ll be around.” It was a direct hit!

“May I have her cell phone number?”

“I’m not allowed to give out student information, so no.” Another direct hit!

“Well that’s a dumb rule. Did you create that just because you don’t like me?” She was showing her emotions, indicating that I had penetrated her defense systems and all that was left was taking her out all the way.

“Ma’am, I can take down your name and number and contact her for you.” That would surely ruin the rest of her day. Ma’am. The horrible, most insulting term for a middle aged woman, especially if used in conjunction with the MEGA BITCHY ICE QUEEN attack. She gave me her number, clearly defeated by the tone of her voice. But I wasn’t satisfied, the defense system not fully deactivated. “Good bye,” I said, “and have a nice day.”


  1. *shudder*