Occasional postings of humour.
Hello, 999? I wish to report a murder. I’ve just strangled my wife. She’s a telephone call centre operator.
Welcome to 999 Emergency Services. If you have a star key on your telephone, please press it twice now.
Thank you. You now have five options. For lottery numbers, please press 1. For television schedules, press 2. For fire, press 3. For police, press 4. For..
Thank you. You are through to 999 Police Services. If you have committed a crime, please press 1. If you are in the process of committing a crime, please press 2. If you have information about a crime, please press 3. If you intend to commit a crime, but have not yet performed any illegal acts, please ring back when you have done so. Thank you.
Thank you. To help us process your call more efficiently, we have provided direct access keys for the most common crimes. For income tax irregularities, please press 1. For murder of a family member, please press 2. For murder of call centre operators, please press 3. For..
Please do not attempt to press more than one key at a time.
Thank you. If you have previously been convicted of a crime, please enter your account number now. Otherwise, please stay on the line for an operator.
Transferring you to an operator.
I’m sorry. Due to an unusually high level of crime in your category, all our operators are busy at the moment. You are held in a queue and will be answered as soon as possible. Please hold.
We are sorry for the delay in dealing with your call. Your crime is important to us. Please continue to hold.
“..Hello, family murder centre.”
Ah, yes, thank you, I wish to report a murder. I’ve just strangled my wife. She’s a call centre operator.
“I’m sorry, sir, you want the call centre murder line. I’ll put you through.”
Please hold while we redirect your call.
“..Hello, call centre murder centre.”
Hello, yes, I wish to report a crime. I’ve just murdered my… I’ve just murdered a call centre operator.
“Thank you. Do you have a customer number or are you a new murderer?”
No, I don’t, I’m a new..
“Thank you. And did you say the murder had already taken place?”
Yes, about thirty minutes..
“I’m sorry, sir, this is 999 Emergency Services, we don’t deal with murders that have already taken place. Please phone your local police.”
But.. Oh, I see. Do you have the phone number?
“Sir, we are not Directory Enquiries. There’ll be a display ad in your local phone directory.”
I’m afraid our phone directory got badly damaged. Quite recently.
“Well then, sir, why don’t you try Talking Pages. Now, please get off the line, or you’ll be prosecuted for wasting Emergency Services time.”
..”Hello, Talking Pages, Amanda speaking, how may I help you?”
I’d like the number of my local police.
“Thank you, sir. And what town or city are you calling from?”
Well, um, London, I suppose, but..
“Could you spell that, please, sir?”
“Would that be Little London in Oxfordshire?”
No, just London, but..
“I’m afraid we have no listing for London, sir. Is there a nearby town or city we could search under?”
Yes, look, try under Hackney.
“Thank you, sir. Looking for you now. Yes, we have three police services advertising for the Hackney area. There’s the British Transport Police, ‘crimes investigated, public transport a speciality’, their number is..”
No, I don’t think so, thank you. What others so you have?
“The Ministry of Defence Police, and the UK Atomic Energy Constabulary.”
The Ministry of Defence Police?
“I’m sorry, sir, that advertiser’s number is ex-directory.”
No, I mean, don’t you have the Metropolitan Police?
“Not among our advertisers, sir, but they may be in our other listings. Yes, here we are, sir, the Metropolitan Police, Hackney.”
Ah, thank you.
“Here’s your number now.”
..Hello, Hackney Police?
“No, this is the British Police Central Switchboard in Aberdeen. Hold on, I’ll put you through.”
Hello, Hackney Police?
“No, this is the Metropolitan Police Central Switchboard in the Faroe Islands. Hold on, I’ll put you through.”
Hello, Hackney Police?
This is the Hackney Police..
..Call Centre in the Falkland Islands. We’re sorry no-one can take your call at the moment. Please leave a message after the beep. For urgent calls, please dial 999. For telephone-related crime, please call the National Call-Centres-Crime Call Centre on….
Hello, this is the National Call-Centres-Crime Call Centre. If you have a touchtone telephone, please throw it at the wall now.
Thank you. We hope you feel better already. However, our stress recognition software is transferring you automatically to the National Call Centres Suicide Helpline. Please hold.
Your suicide is important to us. Please hold.
Hello, this is the National Call Centres Suicide Helpline. If you have already committed suicide, please press 1…
(Posted 30 May, 2018.)
* * *
The height of fame.
The height of fame, he decided, was to have a salad named after you. I mean, who’d have heard of Caesar, if it wasn’t for his salad? Invading Gaul, crossing the Rubicon – that was just for guys who read books. But an entry on a menu – that was universal fame. Then there was the Waldorf. Ok, so that might have been a great hotel, may still be for all he knew. But you didn’t have thousands of people talking about that every day. But turn it into a mixture of apple and walnuts and mayonnaise, and there it was, all around the world. What do you fancy today, honey? Oh the Waldorf’ll do me. Even Russia. Ok now, no denying, Russia had quite a bit going for it anyway, what with czars and commissars and cold wars and Siberia. But having a salad as well – well, it didn’t do any harm, did it? So he was sure the salad was the thing, and it was the ingredients that mattered. Put together something that tasted great, and then call it a salad, so it sounded healthy. And there you were: immortality. Will you have the steak tonight, dear? Oh no, you know I’m on a diet. I’ll just have the pizza and ice cream salad. You know, the Tony Blair.
(Posted 3 February, 2022.)
* * *