“Dear, will you take care of the hotel reservation? I’m trying to deal with my hair right now.”

“Oh, all right Jane, but I hate talking with anonymous people I can’t see, especially nowadays. I can’t understand the dialect these younger people seem to have developed, from God knows what influence.”

“It’s MTV and Southern California, Fred. You’re just going to have to get used to it.”


(pause while dialing)

“How, mmyool, nry sping, myelhyoo?”

“Is this the Miyako Hotel in San Francisco?”

“Yer, nry sping, myelhoo?”

“I’d like a reservation for tomorrow night, a double room, no smoking, please”

“Serny sir. Naympeez?

“Did you want my name?’


“Fred Pape, Pee Ay Peee Eee.”

“Thyoo Mr. Pace …”

“No, that’s P as in Peter, A as in Apple, P as in Peter, E as in easy.”

“Willoopay wa credcurd?

“Yes, it’s a ServeCard: 123 -456-7890”


“Look, Nuri, or whatever your name is, I am old, I don’t hear well, you speak very fast and I don’t understand most of what you say. Please speak slower and more distinctly”

“Ok, sir, whad yoo wan now?”

“I want to know that you have my credit card number correctly. Please repeat what you recorded.”

“OK, sir, Wan, doo, dree, fi, sits …”

“No, no, you left out the four, after the three.”

“Dree? Four?”

“Yes, Three, four.”

“OK sir.”

“Do you have the rest of the numbers?


“What are they?”

“Fi, sits, sem, nine, oh.”

“No, No, No. You left out the eight after nine. It’s one, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight, nine, zero.”

“OK, sir.”

“Would you please confirm this reservation by email?”

“Ok, sir.”

“My email address is ‘’ Please repeat that.”

“Fredpace at dufus”

“I give up!” (hangs up).

“Dear, you were so rude!”

“Jane, dammit, you take care of it. Maybe you can understand people with marbles in their mouths and iPods in their ears.”

“You’re turning into an old curmudgeon.”

“Get used to it.”