|Talk-Talk, can't talk
||[Jun. 10th, 2004|05:36 pm]
Yesterday after my pest control fiasco, I was quietly recovering my
calm while working on my laptop outside in the garden. The peace was
soon broken by the telephone ringing. I picked it up with the usual
hello. There was a second or two of dead silence followed by a burst of
background conversation noise. I have come to know what this signifies.
About eight months ago I stupidly filled out a survey from a web banner
ad of the company Consumer Lifestyles. There would be a prize draw to
win a year's supply of Stella Artois! Holy sh1t! That was all it took.
I didn't even bother to look at the terms and conditions. I had given
Consumer Lifestyles consent to distribute my name, address, telephone
number and very precise marketing details to all of their affiliates
who then had the right to contact me and try to sell me something. As
an example, our car insurance runs out in February and I'm sure that
next year just like last time I will be getting calls from all sorts of
insurance companies at around 7:30 in the evening. This is particularly
hard to bear because as a web programmer and generally kind of savvy
techie guy, I really ought to have known better.|
So I was not too surprised when I heard a Scottish male voice saying to
me, "Hello, Mr. Flattery?" That is close to the pronunciation of my
surname, but not quite there. I am amazed at how difficult it seems to
be for the English (and Scots apparently) to pronounce a fairly common Irish surname that is
spelled out on a piece of paper right in front of them. Rarely has it
been a problem for me in the good ole U.S. of A. "Yeah" was my feeble reply...
Scotsman: My name is (something or other) from a telephone company called Talk-Talk. How are you today?
Scotsman: You have probably seen us advertised and promoted on the Channel 4 TV show Big Brother?
Me: I guess...
Scotsman: Anyway, Mr Flattery,
we offer very competitive rates... blah, blah, blah, yak, yak, yak...
BT line. Does BT provide your telephone services?
Me: I have NTL.
Scotsman: NTL... is that a cable telephone service?
Scotsman: Oh. Unfortunately Mr Flattery you need to have a BT line in order to use our services.
Me: what a shame
Scotsman: Well you enjoy your day Mr Flattery.
Me: Thanks, I suppose I'll just have to carry on somehow.
I think maybe from now on I'll begin by saying "No, I'm sorry. The
Flaherty's don't live here anymore. I'm afraid they couldn't stand the
constant barrage of sales calls and they got divorced and sold the
house to me. I also don't like the sales calls, so you know." I wonder
what they'd say?
They would try and offer you competive rates on international calls, probably.
I have registered with them. Cheers, Ant.