When your cell phone number spells out something profane, chances are pretty good you’re going to get a few prank calls.
Trust me on this – I speak from experience.
I was selling real estate 10-11 years ago, with a business partner/boyfriend, when we both switched cell phone carriers and received new numbers. Neither of us thought anything of our numbers until we saw other Realtors who had personalized their phone numbers: 319-SELL-IOWA or 319-SHE-SELLS. Something like that.
We quick pulled out our phones and looked at the number pad to see what our own numbers spelled out. Mark #1 (or more commonly, “Bad Mark,” because my new boyfriend is also a Mark) shook his head, his numbers spelled out gibberish. I looked at my own numbers a bit, then raised my head, grinned a little, and said, “Ah, shit.”
He thought I meant my numbers spelled gibberish, too.
Actually, they spell out, “AH_-SHIT.”
Not exactly the kind of thing you want on your business card. It didn’t work so well when I stopped selling real estate and became the faith and values reporter at The Gazette in Cedar Rapids. You don’t really want to hand a card to a minister with a shortcut like that.
It wasn’t long after I got the new number that I started getting prank phone calls, usually from someone drunk, most often between 1 and 3 a.m. “Hey, do you know you’re shit?” “Awwww, shit.” “Can I have your number? I want shit.”
And so it went. I even had one co-worker ask me to let him know if I ever wanted to change my number – he wanted to take it over.
I never did get rid of the number; I guess it just got too easy to tell people if they wanted to remember my number, there was a really easy way. And somehow, the prank calls stopped. Apparently it became less funny to be drunk and look at your phone to see what kind of obscene telephone numbers were out there, and who really had them.
Now with the popularity of texting, the wrong numbers are much more humorous – and maybe a little frightening.
A few months ago I received a text from a man telling me he’d changed his mind, he was willing to give it a shot and could I meet him somewhere to deliver the package. Me being me, I texted him back that he’d gotten the wrong number but “good luck with the package.”
He then felt the need to tell me he had changed his mind on giving up women and that the package was a new sex toy designed for men who didn’t like women. But hey, “while I’ve got you, you could try to help me change my mind again.”
Um … no.
Then there was rant I received a few days ago from a guy who swore we’d been in a heated argument the night before.
“No,” I texted back, “you’ve got the wrong number.”
“No, I don’t. Quit being an ass.”
He then sent me three screen shots of the heated text argument he’d been in – complete with the other phone number, the one that was close to mine, but wasn’t mine.
I pointed that out to him.
“Oh, I have the wrong number.”
It may be time to consider a new number …