No connection? Serves me right

Published 9:41 am Monday, January 16, 2012

The scripture that says something about “as you do it to the least of these,” is it talking about telemarketers?

If so, I’m going to be in real hot water … or worse.

Those folks bring out the worst in me.

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I was brought up better than to act the way I do when I stop what I’m doing to answer the phone only to find a telemarketer on the other end of the line.

On New Year’s Eve, I was elbow deep in hog jowl and blackeyed-pea preparations when the phone rang.

I was pleasant enough to the man who asked for me by name.

I continued to be nice enough when he said that he was calling on behalf of my telephone provider. He just wanted to thank me for being a valued customer.

That made some kind of sense because there probably aren’t that many of us land-liners around anymore.

If he had just bowed out right then, neither my black-eyed peas nor my temper would have boiled over.

But then, he started that telemarketer speil that always begins with “This call may be monitored blah, blah, blah,” which is “understood” to mean so I will get paid for harrassing you.

I was polite in saying that I was not interested in the other services offered by the provider.

And, no. I wasn’t interested in the company’s Internet service.

No. I said again.  I already have Internet service.

But he kept on.

But this Internet service was lightning  fast.

Being a mature woman, mine was plenty fast enough for me. I made my case.

He rebuttled.

My stockpile of pleasantness began to ooze out of me.

“I already have the Internet and I am completely satisfied with the service,” I managed to say from behind clinched teeth and without moving my lips.

“How much do you pay for your Internet service,” the telemarketer asked, sticking his nose way too far in my private business.

My jaw became unhinged and out spewed venum.

“That’s not any of your business,” I said.

With that, I hung up.

I didn’t say “goodbye” or kiss my foot or anything.

I just hung up.

What had I done to one of the least of these?

The poor man.

He was probably just trying to make a living for him and his family.

He might be caring for his ailing mother or working to help his daddy save the farm.

Or even worse, he might be a moonlighting preacher.

I’d come fact-to-face with that situation long ago.

A door-to-door salesman came to my door trying to sell Bible books. I turned him away in quick fashion.

That night the door-to-door salesman was leading the revival at my church. I sat on the back pew with my head bowed.

I should have learned my lesson back then. If I had, I wouldn’t be so worried about that poor man with a house full of young’uns and nothing to feed them.

And now, for some reason, my server can’t find the Internet.

Serves me right, I guess.