Sunday, March 26, 2006

The Phone Crush

At the Day Job, a lot of our business is done on the phone. It's not unusual to talk to a customer every other month or so for years on end without ever meeting them in person. There comes a point with every customer when you instantly recognize their voice and can recite pertinent information before they do: the address and person their order will go to, the amount they usually spend, their payment method, etc.

With one customer in particular, that point came much sooner than it has with any of the others I've dealt with in my seven years at the shop. This customer was blessed with an amazing voice--rich, warm, flowing, enveloping. It gets me every time, inspires involuntary cooing and giggling. I once saw actress Dana Delaney on a late night talk show describing her trip to South America. She said she'd stepped off the plane in Brazil and the heat, the humidity, the teeming crowds and strains of music from the street musicians, "went straight to my crotch." The Voice is kinda like that. I have to steel myself against it. And it's a major effort.

My only defense is to remember the week a few summers ago when I got to meet The Voice in person. The Voice calls to mind tall, dark, handsome, charming but not "slick," sexy but not smarmy and a whole host of other appealing characteristics. The reality of The Man Behind The Voice is stocky, average height, minimal neck, and very, very hairy--troll hairy, the kind of hairy you can only suspect when you see a fully dressed man, that hints of the horrors that lie beneath.

The day after I first met him, I made a delivery to his parents house and was greeted by TMBTV wearing shorts and a tank top, which left his pelt alarmingly visible. This is a profoundly hairy man--so hairy, in fact, that the tattoo on his right shoulder reminded me of moss-encrusted statuary you see in cemeteries and at battlefield memorials--you almost want to scrape away the moss, but can't bring yourself to touch it. He was sweating a little because it was so humid and he had been moving tables and chairs all morning, so each strand and clump of hair glistened in the morning sun, winking in an ominous and repulsive way.

I'm not in general a squeamish person--I mean seriously, would I have made it this far with four kids without requiring electroshock therapy if I were squeamish?--but thatch-like body hair not only repulses me, it actively alarms me.

In this case, that alarm is a good thing because it's the only thing that keeps me from making a total idiot of myself every time he calls. I counsel the primal response to his voice with reminders of the visual reality: "He's hairy, he's hairy, he's hairy, he's hairy."

And, most of the time, it works.


  1. Tee, hee, hee! Oh, I bet you have some stories you could blog about in your line of work especially with deliveries!

    I don't know why, but the tabloid image of Robin Williams playing with his kids on the beach in a speedo, which could easily be confused with a gorilla or a wolfman, comes to mind when reading this tonight.

    Maybe your guy has missed his calling and he should be a phone sex dude or something. HA!

  2. I had one like that at my old job. Except when I met him he was GORGEOUS!!!!! The day I met him I had stopped by the office during a break from jury duty so needless to say I wasn't dressed like I normally would have been.

  3. This is funny as hell!

    My husband has a Voice like that...and what did me in was that the rest of him matches it: six foot three, wolf-eyes, scary eyebrows, and biceps to die for. Plus big old hands.

    Obviously I had to marry him.

  4. *sigh* Sean Connery *sigh*

  5. I have a tendancy to imagine radio DJ's to be more attractive than they are.

    The he is hairy mantra is funny!

  6. Sean Connery--he's soooo got the voice!

    And poor hairy Robin Williams is exactly the kind of hairy the phone crush guy turned out to be!

    And bless all those guys who have the package to back up the voice! And radio DJ's? I once heard someone say DJ's usually have the "perfect face for radio." I try to keep that in mind--sometimes it even works!

  7. you have to know how much it makes me smile every time i come over here!!! you're tooo funny.

  8. Youngest Sister3/31/06, 8:16 AM

    Don't you think that it will get a lot harder for the "face for radio" guys now that the the radio stations all have websites with photos of the DJs? You have all of your imaginings destroyed in one fell swoop just by checking out their photos on-line.

  9. I can't tell you how many times my hopes have been dashed on the radio dj score.