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When I was on my way home from class yesterday, I got a call from an unrecognizable number. I took the call since I thought it could be a student whose number was unfamiliar. It turned out to be an automated telemarketing call offering to lower my interest rates and change my life if I’d just press “9”. I’ve gotten this call before and not only thought I’d placed my number on the Do Not Call Registry, but also thought I’d successfully blocked this particular number from being able to call my cell. Obviously, I was mistaken. So I pressed 9 with the hope of getting a human so I could request they remove my number from their call list.
A young man with a beautiful Indian accent took my call.
I launched right in and said, “Please don’t hang up. I’d like you to remove my number from your call lists. Your company has called me so many times I feel like you guys are hunting me. I’ve requested my number be removed before but apparently this request hasn’t worked. It’s getting ridiculous. Please, can you help?”
He seemed to take issue with the way I phrased my request.
“Why do you say ‘hunt’? This is very serious, this hunting.”
I said that, because they keep calling me, I feel like I can’t seem to shake them.
He was stuck on the word “hunt”. He tried to sound injured by my accusation.
I suggested that perhaps this word may sound extreme, but I thought calling it “stalking” was a bit too intense.
I said, “Look, let’s move on from this word. I see you feel it’s a highly charged word. My point is this: as much as it would be lovely to talk to you about really any other thing, I am not at all interested in discussing my credit card debt or financial situation and would like to stop receiving unsolicited calls from your company about financial matters.”
He asked if I would really be willing to talk and I said, “sure”.
He asked for my “cup size”. His accent made me feel the need to ask for him to repeat this and then to clarify. Yes, I’d heard him correctly. He wanted to talk about breasts.
I offered that I thought I’d easily be considered a C-cup, perhaps even a D.
I have pretty ample breasts.
This impressed him and I felt a need to explain that my breast size felt compatible with my overall body size and shape, rather than being overly large.
He asked if I was saying I was about a “28?”
I said that no, I am more of a 36 inch bra size.
He was impressed.
He asked what color my nipples were? I explained that I think most nipples are in the arena of Brown, varying darker to lighter, but all generally brownish. He said he thought they were usually Pink but I disagreed. I said that where body and skin color were concerned, the concept of a true Pink is unrealistic. The human female areola and nipple are generally darker than surrounding skin and move in the world of color ranging from a pinkish brown to a very dark brown. I asked if he’d seen a lot of breasts and he said no.
I suggested that perhaps he may have limited exposure, and that the women whose breasts and bodies he’s assessed might be culturally more naturally slight in form. Maybe they’re tinier women. More diminutive.
I am not a big woman. I have a womanly shape and my breast size is proportionate to the rest of my body.
He admitted has only had sex with one woman—his current girlfriend. I asked if he loved her and he said yes. I said, “Yay! This is great. It’s a really beautiful thing. You should be happy you’ve found someone with whom you feel you can share your life, your joy, your love, and enthusiasm.”
I asked for his name and he hesitated for a moment, but then offered, “Ryan”.
I asked how old he was and he asked me to guess, which I correctly guessed as 24. He asked my age and I offered my 51 years. I could hear his complicated emotional reaction in his sharp intake of air. I said, “It’s okay. Are you feeling upset that you talked to me about breasts and sex knowing how old I am?”
“Yes. I really thought you were about 35.”
I said, “Ryan. We are all human beings and all have a natural biological imperative to mate. Sexuality does not stop with age. Older people enjoy sex as much as younger people. Older people consider sex as often as well.”
My willingness to talk was such a shock for him.
I asked him, “If money was not at all an issue, if you were King of the World, what kind of work would you love to be doing?” He said he hadn’t really thought about this much, and I said, “Do. Really. Right now. Take a second and think about it.”
He said he thought he’d really like to be a stock trader.
“Really?? Stocks give you joy? Thinking about stock trading feels passionate for you? Or is that answer all just about making more money?”
While he considered this, I suggested he might be an artist or writer or more creative person? Had he ever considered this?
He said he hadn’t really. He felt that yes, he thinks he’d really want to trade stocks. He thought stock trading is a fascinating thing. Okay. To each his own.
So, I talked about how we humans spend more time doing ‘work’ than we do in any other part of our lives, and that he’s a young person and should move toward doing the work he loves.
I said, “I want you to think about how much money you really honestly need in order to get by, and then find a way to do the stuff that makes you feel really passionate and happy. Give up this soul-sucking telemarketing job that you clearly do not love and study what you want. I want you to love who you love, do what you love, be happy. You deserve it.”
He was silent for a moment and then kind of gasped and said, “Oh my god. You blew my mind. I don’t know what to say. I’ve never thought of this. I am speechless. I am so glad we had this talk.”
He admitted he honestly had no way of taking me off the company call list. “I am a junior working in this customer service center. I have no ability to do this for you and I’m really sorry. I could tell you I’ll do this thing you want, but I don’t want to lie to you. I wish I could do this. “
I thanked him for his honesty.
He thanked me for our talk and said he’d never forget me and what I’d said.
We hesitated for a moment, both just a little sad to say goodbye. But we did.