Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Bygone Era: The Prank Phone Call

Oh, this post "rang" so true with me. You see, I was once a mischievous youth. I know, I know--You can't picture it, this completely shocks you! But alas, it is true. My neighbor friend and I would spend hours dialing up unsuspecting people and subjecting them to our vocal talents.

Ahh, those were the good old days. We never did anything malicious or mean spirited (at least in our opinion). Many of our calls during summer months were to businesses where we would ask outlandish questions to see how they would respond, i.e., "Yes, an in-ground pool. No, no... I don't want it in the backyard. I want it in the front, with half of it in the garage with a partition I can swim under."

My favorite, however, was to don an Australian accent and state that I was an international operator with AT&T. We would crinkle some paper next to the microphone to make "static".

Me: "G'Day! I'm AT&T international operator #477. I have a collect call from Danny in Melbourne. Will you accept the charges?"

Them: "No! No!" (the usual answer).

Me: "I'm sorry, sir, this is a bad connection. Will you accept the charges?"

Them: "NO! I don't know anyone in Australia!"

Me: "Okay, one moment while I put the call through."

Me, different voice, same accent: "Hello, Uncle Taddy? Is that you?"

Them: CLICK or "Uhh, I said NO!"

We recorded most of our phone calls, which I now realize was illegal under Federal wiretapping laws, or some such regulation otherwise designed to protect peoples' privacy. 20/20 hindsight. We'd play back the "best-of" calls to entertain ourselves.

And, like the post above points out, this is a lost "art". Caller-ID has marked the end of an era.

Probably for the best. ;)

4 Comments:

At August 29, 2007 1:21 PM, Blogger Sariah in Vancouver said...

LOL Both you and the blog you linked to. I could never have pulled stuff like that off, I would be laughing too hard while I was trying to do it! lol

 
At August 30, 2007 2:26 PM, Blogger Eddie said...

It's just like acting, only there's no stage. You just have to be "in character".

And, if you ever did laugh, you just hung up and dialed a new number. Unlimited possibilities!

 
At September 14, 2007 3:44 PM, Blogger Kim Siever said...

I phoned up someone once who's last name was George. I don't know his first name, but it started with a G.

Woman: Hello?
Me: Is Mr. George there?
(pause)
Mr. George: Hello?
Me: G. George, how you doing?
(click)

 
At September 19, 2007 4:19 PM, Blogger Liz said...

Hey, did you ever call an unsuspecting babysitter and ask her if she liked nylons or stockings, and how she liked to wear them? Was that you? ;-)

This was the only prank phone call I ever received. (And it wasn't until years later that I realized that it was probably more than a prank.)

 

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