Opinion

Telemarketers are slow or special people

It never ceases to amaze me how telemarketers have the guts to call a college dorm every Saturday at 9 a.m. I can set my clock to it! Don’t they know that I didn’t go to bed until 4 a.m.? Doing the math, I’m not getting my eight hours of sleep because some woman halfway around the globe is trying to sell me a Visa card.

So here I was, lying awake in my bed with barely five hours of sleep behind me pondering the question,”whatever happened to the national do-not-call list?” I remember signing up for that, including my cell phone number, my home phone number and my dorm phone number. Perhaps the fact that the calls are coming from India circumvents the national in the “national do-not-call list.”

But what used be annoying has turned into a new game. The calls now have gotten to the point where I have begun to have some fun with them, and I encourage everyone to do the same. Using Special Ed’s survey question “Do you know any slow or special people?” (Crank Yankers on Comedy Central, for those totally out of the loop), I actually got one person to say that I was the only “slow or special person” she knew. I can’t imagine she was too happy about it after I had a little discussion with her supervisor about this offense.

Another caller admitted to me that “his company just gave him my number to call but that they had most likely purchased a list of numbers from my University.” Lovely. As if $38,000 a year isn’t enough anymore. Well, come to think of it, we did lose the Homecoming game, so perhaps the alumni are a bit slow to give this year.

I am left to wonder how much my dorm phone number is worth. To find out, I am going to begin handing out phone numbers of University administrators. Perhaps I can even make a little cash on the side by selling those. I think I will start with Financial Aid. I could use a scholarship boost; perhaps a Visa credit card would help them with the money they don’t have. Then I will most likely move on to the vice presidents and the Office of the President. I can’t imagine them not taking any counter-action if they are getting awoken at 9 a.m. on a Saturday by the Visa sharks.

I would love to hear from anyone who has had a great phone conversation with a telemarketer. It would be great to add transcripts of such conversations and tips & tricks to my Campus Brainz webpage for everyone to indulge in.

Felix Boecker can be contacted at f.boecker@umiami.edu.

January 25, 2005

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The Miami Hurricane

Student newspaper at the University of Miami


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The Miami Hurricane is the student newspaper of the University of Miami in Coral Gables, Fla. The newspaper is edited and produced by undergraduate students at UM and is published weekly on Thursdays during the regular academic year.