Thursday, June 21, 2007

Strange Phone Call

Today I was sitting in my bedroom, minding my own business, when out of nowhere my cellular phone began to ring. The caller ID listed a number that I didn't recognize from an area code that I wasn't sure of.

It was some guy. He was an operator for something called Relay. He informed me that I was receiving a call from someone using this "Relay" system, which apparently is a way for people to call long-distance over the internet. How does it work? Well I'm glad you asked.

The internet user would type what he or she wants to say and the operator would then read it to the person receiving the phone call. Then the person called will respond and the operator would then transcribe that side of the conversation. It seems to me that actually calling or using Instant Messenger would save a lot of time here.

So who called/IMed me using Relay? I still don't know. The first message the operator relayed... hey, I just got why it's named Relay... anyway, the first message was "Is this Alicia's phone?" And then the operator says "go ahead."

Also, I have to say "go ahead" when I'm done talking. It's like saying "over" on a walkie-talkie. I responded "No... go ahead."

So then the guy asked me if it was someone else's phone. "No, I think you have the wrong number... go ahead."

After this I waited. And waited. Meanwhile, my cell minutes are ticking away. Finally I said, "Look, not to be rude or anything, but if this is a wrong number I'm just gonna hang up 'cause this is using up my time." No response. No relay of any kind. So I hung up.

So if someone out there tried to relay me today, I'm sorry I hung up on you. But next time, could you just send me an instant message? I know I usually have an away message up, but I'll get what you're trying to say. Besides, I'm too impatient to wait for an operator to type it for me.

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