In with the in(doors) crowd

THE calls, they keep on coming. You know the ones, you’ll have them too.

“We have been trying to contact you,” says the well-spoken woman in one call, lamenting that she hasn’t been able to catch you yet.

“We phoned earlier but you weren’t in. We would like to speak to you about that the PPI insurance claim you are entitled to/that accident you had/the compensation you are due for your dreams falling somewhat short… please phone us back so that we can bamboozle you and trick you, cheat you and deceive you; and set your foolish hopes floating off in a boat made of folded paper…”

Well, they don’t go quite like that but you know the form. The one we get all the time at the moment is the nicely spoken woman dangling the possibility of reimbursement due to having once bought a PPI insurance policy. In this house we have been down that road already and it was paved with small change rather than gold, but never mind, as all contributions are gratefully received, especially at the moment.

But here’s another thing. I am in all the time. Being in is what I do, how I try to earn a freelance shilling. Sometimes I do go out but mostly I stay in; in with the in(doors) crowd, that’s me right now. So if I am in all the time, how on earth is it that I keep on missing your calls?

Other than the unadventurous retired or a housebound person, you couldn’t meet someone more likely than me to be in at the moment. So I haven’t missed your calls, nice-voiced lady, because you don’t make calls you just send out relentless recorded messages in a mammoth fishing exercise in the hope that someone will phone you back. At which point the bamboozlement can begin; and how pleased I am to see that the spell-checker allows that word, although I would have used it anyway.

The other day on the radio, that provider of incidental company to members of the in-crowd, there was a report concerning these phone calls. One complaint was about a firm selling hearing aids. The caller speaks very quietly and when the householder says: “Sorry, I can’t hear you” the salesperson replies: “Well you clearly need our hearing aids.”

Now that is awful but kind of funny, too. Whoever had that idea has a brain, even if it is not being put to the best use.

Today is Sunday and I have been out for the morning run, which gets me out of doors and gives the knees something to complain about. A bacon sandwich made using the granary-style sourdough bread I made yesterday has been eaten. From the kitchen below I can hear the Cerys Matthews show playing just the sort of music I like. In the garden I can hear my wife talking to our Spanish guest.

I think it must be time to step away from the laptop.

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