The Civilized Minute

a minute of manners and musings

it was a beautiful sunday

It’s Sunday afternoon. There’s a fire in the fireplace. Ben is up in his room doing his homework. Emma has her pre-algebra spread out on the coffee table. The Hubs is on the sofa with his laptop. The dishwasher is whirring it’s work on Sunday’s dirty dishes. I survey the scene. It’s a quiet afternoon. Everything is as it should be.

But, the phone rings. The land line.

Emma picks it up on the first ring and stares at the display waiting for the Caller ID to spill it. After the second ring, she tilts her head to the side and says “Columbus, Georgia?” and presses the green button.

Oh, no, they did not.

Since I work from home most days, I am on to the tricks of the skillful telemarketer. Have you noticed the latest strategy? Rather than Caller ID displaying the typical ‘Unknown Caller’, it might read something like ‘Abbeville, Georgia’ or ‘Florence, Alabama’.  Of course I’m going to answer a call from a real town. Now, if the display read ‘New York, New York’, admittedly, I probably wouldn’t answer. For obvious reasons, of course.


“Yessir. Just one minute, please.” And she looked at The Hubs.

“Such nice telephone manners, Doodlebug. Now, would you hand me that phone?” I said as I somewhat forcefully pinned her down high school wrastlin’ style and pried the phone from her shocked and fear-gripped fingers.

“Hello.” I said. It was a statement.

I walked out of the room with just a hair more intention than I meant. You see, Sunday afternoons are not for telemarketers. They are for Mamas.

“Uh. I was holding for Darrell.” I mean the gall. A real sounding man from a real sounding town.

“This is his wife, Kate. Is there something I can help you with?” Left hand on left hip.

“Oh! Hey, Kate. This is Chris with S&G.”  Customer. Hubs. Overreact? Completely. Left index finger on left canine tooth. I’m usually not at a loss for words.

I have no idea where that reaction to the phone ringing came from, but it scared Emma to death and forced me into a conversation of which I have no recollection with a person I really like.

This is today’s tale from the trail. Now, go forth with courage and answer your phone with grace. I’ve said it before…this is a ‘do-as-I-say-not-as-I-do’ kind of program.


2 responses to “it was a beautiful sunday

  1. Tara Poole January 24, 2011 at 9:43 am

    It’s ok to guard your time, Mama Bear! I can relate. Telemarketers aggravate the snot out of me too. Love reading your blog, Kate!

  2. Kate January 25, 2011 at 7:44 am

    Thanks, Tara, for saying ‘you’re not the only one’! Thanks for reading this one and all the others, too! 🙂

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