JIM HULL'S ANSWERING MACHINE

 

Copyright 1989, 1990, 1991, 1998, 2015 by Jim Hull

(Please cite the author if you quote from this work)

 

Remember the old days, when you used to put silly outgoing messages on your telephone answering machine? (Today all you have time to announce is your pager number.) Let's return to those thrilling days of yesteryear, when dialing the phone was like playing Humor Russian Roulette. Below are several goofy announcements invented by Jim Hull. Of course, Jim is way too grown-up to use these anymore, but perhaps you aren't, so go ahead: borrow one!

(By the way: in the stuff below, "he" and "him" can also be "she" and "her" - please forgive Jim, he's gauche.)

 

*

"If you're looking for [your name ], you've come to the right place. My name's Mattick - Otto Mattick. I'm a private snoop. I've got two magnums in my office: one's a gun - I keep it loaded. The other's a bottle - it keeps me loaded. It's a tough life but it pays the bills - especially Bill, my bookie, and Bill, my parole officer. I know where [your name ] is hiding. He thinks he's so smart. If you're smart, you'll leave [your name ] a message. When he wises up he'll come here and I'll give it to him. Right in the kisser, if he doesn't pay me."

 

*
Hello, I'm Doctor Seuss. I'm still dead, but I'm back,

Because [your name ] has a problem he'd like me to crack:

[Your name ] is feeling quite silly, his face is quite red,

For this morning, when he tried to get out of bed,

He found that his feet had turned into big trees!

They had branches and leaves; they were big as you please.

They were big as the trees that grow in his backyard!

When your feet are like trees, it makes it quite hard

To get out of bed just to answer the phone.

So he's feeling quite sad and he feels all alone.

And he hopes that you'll speak to him right at the tone.

And then if his feet shrink he will call you at home.

Hey! I've got to go now. Time to go get re-buried.

Isn't life really strange? Isn't life really varied?

 

*

"[Hum and flutter tongue at same time ] Oh, g-day! This is Crocodile [your name ]. I'm spinnin' this outback telephone to reach me mates in the bush. Ah, you Americans love it when we call it the bush. Well, why doncha leave a message on this machine at the beep, then relax, drink a Foster's beer, and I'll return your call. She's right, mate... no worries!"

 
*
But hark! Methinks a message cometh yon

From you, dear friend, a voice of cheer anon.

'Twill be, I pray, a note of grace and wit,

That e'en the Bard of Avon would see fit

To pen or voice to friends of him as well.

Else I remain here in my private hell,

My form outstretched in loneliness and pain,

To pine from lack of hearing you again,

That some young prince might say on future day,

'Alas, poor [your name ]," and I fade away

From memory. But no! leave message, please

And give new life! And give my torment ease.

 

*

"Hi, this is [your name ]. I'm on tape, so at the tone tip a tiny taste of your topic, and I'll telephone today, or tomorrow, or Tuesday. Terrific? Tremendous. Take it!"

 

*

"Hi, it's [your name ]. Gee, I'm in a jam: I'm on a job, but I just ain't a jerk. So I jury-rigged this jazz so it'd jibe if you jabbered at the jangle. Then I'll jingle you and we'll enjoy a gem of a jam. It's jake. No joke!"

 

*

"Hello, this is [your name ]. At the tone, please leave your name and telephone number, and a message of any length, along with the date and time of your call, the hours when you can be contacted, other phone numbers where you can be reached along with the hours you will be there, the number of your pager, the number of your fax machine, the names of any other people through whom you can be located along with their phone numbers, the number of people in your household, their names and ages, the combined income level of your household, the number and make of cars owned by all members of your household, the names of any pets you may own, the number of square feet in your home along with its estimated market value, the number of fire hydrants within two blocks of your home . . . [etc. ]"

 

*

(And here's a message I RECEIVED from Ken Williamson :)

"Jim? Ken. Call. 'Kay? Bye."

 

If you find any part of this work quoted without credit to the author, please let him know! Thank you. jimhull@jimhull.com

 

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