I've decided after many months that this little gem of a conversation has to be blogged. I was a little worried she might somehow stumble across it and get offended...but it's not like she can actually use a computer. I guess I'll take my chances.
The phone rings, I answer...it's Janice.
Janice: "Melissa, this is Mom"Like I don't know it's her For one, I've heard her voice for 32 years, it tends to become recognizable, and two, She speaks more slowly than any other human I know, and finally, if all that fails to tip me off, my caller ID assures me that there is a 75% chance I will regret not letting this call go to voice mail, then calling back at a more convenient time...like when I have ten minutes of life left on my phone battery.
Me: "Hey Mom..."
Janice:"Hey. I just wanted to ask you a quick question. " note: When Janice says "a quick question" this results in a conversation of a minimum: 15 minutes, average: 45 minutes, worst case scenario: 2 hours and she hangs up on me, mad and insulted, when I insist I have to go because Nate's bedtime was a hour ago
Me: "OK..." HELP!
Janice: "You said you had free minutes after 7pm and on weekends, but I'm looking at my phone bill and we've got calls on here that we're being charged for, and the time of alot of these calls are after 7..." OK, first of all: that's not even a question, but Holy freakin crap, are you kidding me? I can already see where this is going because I had a conversation with her two months ago that started the same way. I pray for a dropped or a low service area as I drive through the country. Please Cingular, if there was ever a time when you could fail me...PLEEEASE, PLEEEEEASE, let it be NOW!
Janice: "Why are we being charged for free minutes? That's just wrong!" Oh good god, just fake a dropped call! You can do it!
Me: "Mom, No. What I said was I have unlimited/free minutes on my cingular plan after 7pm and on weekends, so if you guys are going to call me, to wait until then to do so unless it's an emergency, that way I won't go over and be charged for the calls."
Janice: "I know, but we're being charged for them. I've got the bill right here..."
Me: "There only free for my cell phone plan. You still get charged for the call if you make it from your home phone."
Janice: "I thought when you said free minutes, that they were free. I thought we weren't supposed to be paying for those calls if we waited to call you after 7. I mean, you said they were free. If we'd know we were being charged, we wouldn't have talked so long..." Ok...this makes me laugh every time I think of it. See definition of 'quick question' above...yeah she wouldn't have talked long...riiiight.
Me: "Like I said before, these are 'free' only on my plan. If you call me from your home phone then you will be billed for the call because it's long distance. Now if you call from your cell phone and you have free nights and weekends on your plan you won't be charged. Or if I call you on your home phone, you aren't charged."
Janice: "Well, WE get charged ANYTIME on our cell plan. We have Verizon and it's just plain sorry."
Me: "Are you sure you don't have N&W on your plan? Most of them offer that. Maybe you should ask Dad...he would know since he set the plans up."
Janice: "He keeps talking about switching, because Verizon's service is just sorry"
Me: "You should still ask him."
Janice: "Do you have a bill for your calls that you could look at and tell me which time you called me. Our bill shows charges for all of these calls, and I know sometimes you called us after 7. So they're charging us for times when you called us. If you called, we shouldn't have to pay for it." Oh...My...God
Me: "Mom, you're looking at a bill for your landline, right? It doesn't list incoming calls, so all of those charges are for calls you made to me."
Janice: "But you called us sometimes, I remember. We didn't always call you." Holy Crap!
Me: "MOM! I know I called you too, but you won't see those calls at all on your bill. It only lists the calls you make. Those are the only ones you are getting charged for."
Janice: "But it doesn't say which ones are incomng or outgoing, it just lists a charge by each one. If they're charging us for all of them, that's wrong. We shouldn't have to pay for the ones we didn't make..." This is what hell is like, isn't it? It must be...
Me: "MOM!!!!!! There is NOTHING WRONG on your bill!!! They are ALL OUTGOING CALLS!!!! They don't PRINT incoming calls on your bill."
Me: "I'm sorry you misunderstood what I said about the free minutes. I know you guys don't have alot of money, so if you ever need me to call you back at night, just say so. I don't always think about it, so just remind me and I'll call you right back..."
Janice: "Well, ok...I guess I'll let you go. I just wanted to ask you about that real quick...because when I talked to you before, you said they were free...and well, we thought they were free for us, too. I wish you had told us they weren't free for us" My mom is on crack, I swear. She must be. I've had enough of this nonsense. Time to break out the reality check.
Me: "Well, Mom, I really don't understand why you would think that still, because we had this same conversation two months ago, because you got a phone bill and thought they were charging you then, too. I explained the whole situation to you before."
Janice: "You told ME about this?"
Me: "Yes, the same conversation. I told you the same thing two months ago. "
Janice: "Yeah, but when you told me, you said they were 'Free after 7pm, so we didn't think..." AAAAAAAAAAAARRRRRRRRRRGH!!!
Me: "Free for ME, MEEEEEEE. OK? THAT is what I told you. I'm sorry you didn't understand that you would be charged. The only reason I asked you all to wait until after 7pm was because we had lowered our plan and I had les than 300 minutes for daytime use and if I went over I got charged. Seriously mom, 40 cents per minute for anything over. That's alot. I just needed to be careful."
Janice: "I know it's alot. You know, your brother gets charged alot too...it says right here, he gets charged 20 cents a minute...and 12 cents a minute...33 cents..." At this point I'm scratching my head, not a freakin' clue WHAT she is talking about...because she's still looking at HER bill. I'm certain she has lost her damn mind and is trying to take mine with it.
and then she says: "Oh, wait...no, no. Those are the length of the calls..." I really wish I could say the conversation ended there, but it didn't. I'll spare you the rest of the details as I'm sure your brain is as numb as mine at this point, right??