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Writing Resources from Fifteen Minutes of Fiction

The following is a piece of writing submitted by LBrantley on July 7, 2010
"I've been trying to connect with this guy for months and he doesn't respond. Somebody help me, please!"

What Irritates You?

Pet peeves. Okay - where do I start? Which one?

Well, one of my pet peeves is when people do not return phone calls. I don't really like to talk on the phone that much. I mean, I'm not one of those people who will dial your number and talk on and on about my children, my grandchildren, my garden, my aches and pains and all that. But, if you call me and tell me all those things, I will certainly listen.

But, when I make a phone call, which for some reason unknown to me, I dread and I leave a message politely asking for that person to return my call and they don't - well, I just don't understand. And when I have to leave three or four messages with the same request, I think that is just rudeness.

Today I have made my fifth attempt to contact a person who is co-ordinator of something in which I want to participate. There is no other way to get involved except through this person. It's very frustrating because here I am ready to get started and involved and I am just being ignored. I have filled out the required form three times and have left my third voice mail and still I hear nothing.

Now, I understand that people get busy or maybe they are out of town, but these attempts have been made over a matter of months!

Yes, it's high on my pet peeve list when people don't return my calls. How long does it take to dial a number for a conversation that would take less than ten minutes?

So, I sit here irritated trying to come up with ways NOT to be irritated and frustrated and trying to be kind and polite by making all sorts of excuses for this person who does not return calls, but keeps announcing that they are the contact person for this issue.

Maybe it's me. Maybe it's linked to my many years of being administrative assistant - where I always answered the phone and returned calls the same day. But this person works in an office. Do they let their voice mails pile up?

I knew a lady once who did that. She had over a hundred voice mails in her box that she needed to address. Her office was a mess - things thrown on her desk and spilling from numerous bookcases onto chairs, tables and eventually to piles on the floor.

So, maybe it isn't ones lack of consideration. Maybe it is an organizational issue.

But, now I wonder what our conversation will be like when I finally do get to talk with this person. Will it be awkward because I've mentioned the attempts I've tried to contact him and left pleading messages using the word "please" maybe more times than I should? Or will he even notice that he's not returned my calls or that I begged and pleaded and mentioned that more than one form had been submitted and other voice mails were left? He may not even care, but he doesn't seem to be that sort of person to me.

I know this guy's wife and she is sort of one of those "let's get 'er done right now" type of people. She's like the "go to girl" when you need to get something done. "Opposites attract," I remind myself, still trying to come up with excuses for this guy.

Well, what can I do except sit back and wait - again. I'll take a deep sigh, eat some chocolate and hope, and I hope not in vain, that today he will check his voice mail and choose my number to dial. It's just seven little digits to push on the phone.

Pet peeves. Not returning calls is just one of mine. I just don't understand.

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