Saturday, July 29, 2006

Hello? Hello?

Mine is probably one of the few Filipino households with an answering machine. It's one of my souvenirs from my old apartment in Makati. Ordinarily, it would be quite a handy thing to have.

Except: answering machines and Filipinos -- especially Dumaguetenos! -- just do not mix. I've tried the typical, polite, and boring greeting of "I'm not home right now, please leave a message" and nine times out of ten, they. just. hang. up.

Fortunately, I've come across the perfect greeting to which everyone -- and I do mean everyone -- actually leaves a message.

And the message?

"Hello? Hello-ooo? Hello-oooo?"

Then comes the beep, typically unnoticed by callers.

What follows is usually a befuddled mirror response. "Hello? Hello-ooo? Hello? Wala lagi motubag. Na-unsa kaha ni? Hello? Hello! Hello! Guba siguro ang telepono nila. Hello! Hello! Ay, uy! Wala man. Sige na lang."

Even if you don't speak Bisaya, you probably get the gist.

What's that? I don't actually get the name and phone number of the caller? Of course, I don't! But that's miles and miles ahead of my previous response rate, where I got nothing at all.


  1. Well, over here the only people who don't leave messages on answering machines are telemarketers. Anyway, I always reason that if it's important then they'll call back anyway.

  2. HAHAHA!!! I should have tried that one when I had an answering machine. Try this line, "Hello. Kinsa ka? Unsa imong tuyo?" That just might cause them to leave you their name and message. :D

  3. But it's just so-oooo much fun listening to the frustrated callers.... I swear, it always has me rolling on the floor, laughing.

  4. *whap*

    We have an answering machine at home. We usually hook it up when we get prank callers. That way we can screen the calls. Most of our friends and relatives leave messages anyway so we get to pick up before they finish. The prank callers just get frustrated and quit calling.

  5. LOLz. Imagine a long day from work and coming home to this. Great way to unwind.

  6. Oh, yeah, it's more fun than a barrel of monkeys.