Friday, March 25, 2011

When Worlds Collide

     Worlds colliding is overstating a bit, but here's what just happened:  I was at my desk with my right ear bud in listening to music at a low volume.  The music dipped out and a phone call was coming in.  I looked at the phone and I didn't recognize the number.  At first, I thought I should let it go to voicemail.  Then I remembered: my outgoing message is my impression of a robot saying "You have reached the voicemail box of..."  Oh god, I can't let people who don't know me hear that.  So I answered the call.
     The whole process made me feel ridiculous and of course brought up the reasons of having an outgoing message you don't want people to hear.  Well, I do because I thought it was hilarious.  When I got my new phone, the immense pressure of recording a new outgoing message got to me.  I'm not kidding, I sat in front of the phone recording messages for an hour.
     The old message was "You have reached Nancy's phone.  Please leave a message."  What I liked about it was that is was short and to the point.  What I did not like is that every person who left a message started with "Hi Nancy's phone.  I'm looking for Nancy..." or some variation thereof and they all thought they were so clever.  But I had a serious mental block about saying "This is Nancy..." because it wasn't actually me.  It was a recording of me.  Then I would over explain and the brevity would be lost.  As a side note, my sister's outgoing message is insufferably long- to the point that I don't want to leave her a message.  Seriously:
"Hello.  You have reached Queen Amadala's voicemail box.  Unfortunately, I am unable to take your call at the present time, but if you would like to leave me a brief message with your name, contact information, and the best time to reach you, I would be happy to return your call.  Thank you, and have a pleasant day."  I fell asleep listening to it.  Also, I think she hired wood nymphs to record it so it's overly enthusiastic and high pitched.  I've stopped calling.  (Also, she's not in PR or anything like that where an overly cheerful message is good business.  There's no reason for her long, happy message.)
     I digress.  The point was, I wanted to avoid that, but I was also hung up on saying "this is Nancy" or "this is Nancy's phone."  I tried many variations including "Nancy.  Message."  Mary suggested I imitate the automated message.  After two takes, I was pretty sure I had it.  She called my phone to check in and confirmed it was funny.  As per yesterday's post, I always like to go for the joke, so I left it and there it remains.
     I don't spend a lot of time thinking about my outgoing message.  Shortly after I got the phone my mom asked me if I got a new phone because my message "sounded funny."  Of course she didn't mean it made her laugh-funny, she meant weird-funny.  Oh well.  Only people I know call me, and those people know it's funny.  Except for when people I don't know call, and I have to answer my phone.

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