Friday, September 24, 2010

Hello, Good Morning, Hello There in Tucson

That was the message the young woman left on my answering machine in February 2000. I’m sure about the date for two reasons. 1) She left the message shortly after the company I worked for moved to the airport area, thereby inconveniencing most of its employees, including me. 2) Even better: I’m a writer; I tend to document stuff, stuff like odd phone calls. I documented that first message and many subsequent “Hello, hello” messages from the same woman. I still have those notes in my files.

Oddly enough, a second woman also called one afternoon in February and asked to speak to Other Household Member (OHM). OHM told the woman she was speaking to him. The woman giggled and hung up. OHM said he could hear children in the background. Another time, we got a garbled message that sounded like the second woman’s voice saying “It would be at night.” What would be at night?

I was annoyed and with good reason. I had been the recipient of some bizarre phone calls when I first moved to Tucson. I ended up changing my phone number, and I didn’t want to feel forced into doing it again. If the women had something to say to us, I figured they should just say it and stop playing games.

I was certain that the calls were not coming from some zany, disorganized telemarketing company.

And, as it turned out, they weren't.

(to be continued)