Thursday, Mar. 08, 2007, 13:01,

cold calling

I hate cold callers. (This entry has nothing to do with the Erasmus programme, it's just a plain rant.)

My first cold call this morning woke me up and got me out of bed. She was trying to sell me a different internet provider and TV chain. I pointed out that I don't watch TV so I wasn't interested.

My second cold call was also trying to sell me some kind of TV service. I DON'T WATCH TV!! I do not own a television, I do not wish to own a television, I have quite enough distraction to fill my time with DVDs, the internet and books.

Aside: It's as bad as all those letters I kept receiving from the TV licensing people at my parents' house before they moved into it. "This address is on our records as not having a TV licence" - "we're going to send our enforcement officers around with a special detector van and fine you for watching TV without a licence" - "YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED!" and the like. Newsflash: the reason there was no TV licence is because there was no TV. No, not one. This was before the stuff came out of storage so there wasn't even the old black and white thing from the 80's. A TV licence was purchased to coincide with the television set's entry onto the premises. Next year I will hopefully be living alone. I will not have a TV. If I want to watch something, I can ask my Dad to record it and go home to watch it, thereby saving myself about £150 per year - more than the cost of the bus pass to go home every week. I don't normally have the attention span to sit all the way through a TV programme unless I can pause it regularly to get up and wander around, get food and drink, get distracted on the internet etc.

Anyway, this second caller had the nerve to ask me if I "parle correctement francais". Well yes, actually, I speak French pretty well. I feel justified in saying this as a couple of French people have recently told me so. The fact is, I find it difficult to understand a fast-speaking, mumbling French person over the phone when I'm not well-attuned to their accent. I have exactly the same problem with English speakers - this is one of the reasons why I hate phones. I also resent being phoned on a private number to have my language skills insulted. I think she thought I didn't understand what she was offering when I said "je regarde pas la télé". She got it when I said it the second time. I don't watch TV. I just don't. It's like I don't make phonecalls unless I absolutely can't help it. It really annoys me, because only two people actually have my landline phone number, and only one person (my Mum) ever actually phones it.

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