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My mother clings to the 20th Century by refusing to get caller ID – so she screens her calls with her answering machine. Which leaves me the task of coming up with a clever message each time I call. Sometimes, to thwart me I’m sure, she answers the phone before it goes to the machine. She does this just often enough to be completely unpredictable. This morning she answered.

MoC: Hello?

Me: Argh! I had the perfect message to leave!

MoC: You want me to hang up?

Me (joking): Yeah!


Me: Aw, crap!

Redialing …

Machine: Hello. You have reached …

(Thinking fast because I actually did not have a message to leave, clever or otherwise)

Me: The cat did not meow. The dog did not bark.


Me: Um … that was it. That was the message. You can pick up now. MoC? Hello?

MoC: I just wanted to be sure you were finished with the message. Now that I have permission to talk …

(insert mindless chatter here)

Me [surfing the net]: Oh, look. The hottest $40 per hour jobs. I could be an art director …

MoC: Or a pole dancer.

Me: What?

MoC: I saw something about that the other day. There’s a push to make it an Olympic sport. You have to have a lot of upper body strength, though.

Me (ignoring the fact that my mother is encouraging me to be a stripper): Or I could be a mathemetician. Or maybe a drug dealer pharmacist.

We conversated about some uninteresting stuff and then I told her about my job search. I applied for a couple different jobs – one as an IT person at a restaurant, the other in insurance. I even applied to be a Geek Squad person at Best Buy, but I had to take a personality test with the app, so I’m sure my anti-social, non-team-player attitude took care of that opportunity.

MoC: Well, you have to throw a lot of shit at the wall sometimes before something sticks.

[Thinking: I guess I am full of shit, but wouldn’t “pasta” put a more positive spin on that analogy?]

MoC: Oh, I’m sorry. Was that not comforting?

Not so much, MoC. Not so much.