Essentially I remain a twelve year old at heart, at least in several very important respects. Most crucially I love screwing around with people on the phone. I always have and I always will. Back in the old days my friend Nick and I used to call the local strip club (Cozy’s Grill) and ask for random women’s names. Sometimes we would get a hit, and get to talk to a stripper. It was amazing. I also used to call random numbers and give people surveys about their favourite trees or breakfast cereals, just for the hell of it, and once tried to set up a Tom Hanks fan club meeting at a local restaurant, which ended with me in tears. And in perhaps my greatest childhood achievement, I discovered that all of the pay phones in Kingston shared the same prefix, which meant that you could randomly call pay phones all across the city and talk to whoever was curious enough to answer it. It was a good time.
But prank calling people pales in comparison to prank answering. I love it when telemarketers or other people call me! Over the years I have honed this craft for the amusement of my friends and myself, and I like to think that I’m pretty good at it. The best part about prank answering is that the person on the other end of the line actually wants something from you, and they’re therefore likely to hang in there much, much longer than if you had called some random person or business and just started messing with them. They’ll contort themselves into knots trying to tolerate you as you ramp up the craziness until they finally realize that they will never get from you what they wanted.
To pull this off I have developed a perfect character for these sorts of situations: a bizarre, maybe half-drunk, maybe brain damaged hoser of no fixed age. It’s an absolutely intoxicating voice, and as soon as you put it on all kinds of strange stuff will start coming out of your mouth, and the voice is just weird enough that it seems sincere.
Now, in my defence, I’m never mean to the callers, or curse at them, or anything else, so even if I do waste some of their time they definitely get a funny story to share with their friends. Call me what you will, but dammit, it’s funny. Trust me. My friends have been bugging me for years to record the calls, but it’s hard to pull off. Tonight, though, I was in my studio, right beside a live microphone, when an unknown number came up. Go time. I needed a little time to set it up, so I missed the very beginning, but then got it going. The call was from the online company Beyond The Rack, about a purchase I’d recently made. It’s not my very finest, but it’s funny. Enjoy!
CLICK HERE —–> Yours truly, having some fun on the phone
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