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Charlie Hatton
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Howdy, friendly reading person!
I'm on a bit of a hiatus right now, but only to work on other projects -- one incredibly exciting example being the newly-released kids' science book series Things That Make You Go Yuck!
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It’s Not Delivery, It’s De Jackass

I may have mentioned that I have a new phone.

Oh, who am I kidding? Of course I mentioned it. I called every last person I know the day I bought it, just to tell them. My new bumper sticker reads, ‘My Cell Phone Kicks Your Honor Student’s Ass‘. And I introduce myself to people now by saying:

Nice to meet you. Wanna see what’s in my pocket?

(To be fair, I’ve always introduced myself that way. Only now, I can show them the phone.

Much safer. Less horrified looks. Fewer restraining orders. Better.)

Suffice to say that I’m a big phan of my new phone.

(Android Kool-Aid? Why, what flavor is it? Ah, never mind, gimme gimme gimme.)

I wouldn’t go so far to say that the phone is completely perfect, of course. But I do tend to look past its few imperfections, or to see what others might call ‘bugs’ as ‘features’. You might say I always see my bars as half-full.

Take last night, for instance.

” Where others might see ‘poor sound quality’ or ‘shoddy electronics’, I see opportunity.”

I was walking back to my car after a late evening at work, and feeling pretty hungry. Now maybe there was something to eat at home, and maybe there wasn’t. If there was, I’d probably have to cook it myself. Or reheat it. Or at least unwrap it. Clearly, all of those things are beyond my culinary capabilities. Ordering pizza was the only reasonable option.

But home was a long way away, and the menu from the pizza joint mocked me from my kitchen cabinet. It was a long-distance mocking. Tele-mock. Mockhausen by proxy. Something like that.

Luckily, I had my trusty phone on hand. Calling on the gods of mobile 3G goodness, I Googled the name of the pizza place, found their phone number and clicked it. Immediately, the phone asked if I’d like to call the number, and opened the dialer app. Oh, these wondrous times in which we live.

(Look, I’m serious here. If the phone could give a decent back rub and make homemade spaghetti sauce, my wife would have some serious competition on her hands.

Come to think of it, I’m not a huge pasta fan. I’ll have to give this some thought.)

So, my phone graciously dialed the number for me, and a few rings later I was talking to a gentleman who wanted nothing more than to cook a pizza pie and deliver it to my door, in exchange for a few measly dollars. Outstanding.

This, by the way, is where the ‘bug’feature‘ comes in.

I noticed, as soon as we started talking, that I was getting an odd feedback echo through the handset. I don’t know what acoustic anomaly was at work, or whether it had to do with gabbing on the phone in the great outdoors, but every word I said was repeated back after a half-second delay or so. It was a bit unnerving.

Pizza Pie Purveyor: Hello, Pop’s Pizza Pagoda. What would you like?

Me: Yeah, hi. I’d like- (‘-hi. I’d like-‘)

PPP: Yes, what can I get you?

Me: Um, sorry, just a sec. (‘-ust a sec.‘) I’d like to get a large pizza. (‘-arge pizza-‘) Uh, for delivery. (‘-elivery.‘) To <my address>. (‘-dress>.‘)

PPP: Sure, what would you like on it?

As far as I could tell, the guy couldn’t hear it. He could hear me, but not the other me, aping me mercilessly like a snotty six-year-old sibling. Only I could hear me twice. You might think I’d be disappointed in the phone’s performance.

You would be wrong. Where others might see ‘poor sound quality’ or ‘shoddy electronics’, I see opportunity. Opportunity, as usual, to make an ass of myself for my own amusement. I continued with my order:

Me: I want to split the toppings. (‘-oppings.‘)

PPP: Okay. What do you want on the first half?

Me: Iiiiiiiiin this corner! (‘-orner!‘) Weighing in at seventeen ounces! (‘-ounces!‘) The meat you love to eat!! (‘-love to eat!!‘) Miiiiiiister pepperoni!! Oni! Oni. (‘-oni!! Oni! Oni.‘)

PPP: Um… all right. And the other half?

Me: Wearing the green trunks! (‘-trunks!‘) The Tijuana terror!! (‘-error!!‘) Topping the scales at seven thousand Scovilles!! (‘-ovilles!!‘) It’s jaaaaaaalapenos!! Yos! Yos. (‘-os!! Yos! Yos.)

I can’t imagine what the hell the guy was thinking. Except that I was an idiot, probably. Still. When those ring announcer guys order pizza, you know that’s how they do it. Maybe my pizza man thought he was dealing with a celebrity.

Or an escaped mental patient. But I wasn’t quite done yet.

PPP: Okay, then. That’s a large pie, half pepperoni, half jalapenos. Anything else?

Me: Nope, that’s it. (‘-t’s it.’) Oh, just one other thing. (‘-ther thing.‘)

PPP: *sigh* Yeah?

Me: If you could deliver this pizza in thirty minutes… (‘-inutes…‘) …then today… (‘-today…‘) I would consider myself… (‘-myself…‘) …the luckiest man… (‘-man…‘) …on the face of the earth. (‘-the earth.‘)

PPP: Yeah, whatever, buddy. We’ll be there as soon as we can.

Me: No problem. But wait — don’t you need a name? (‘-a name?‘)

PPP: Not really. We’ve got the address.

Me: Could you ask for a name, anyway? (‘-way?‘)

PPP: I don’t think I want to.

Me: C’mon. As a favor. For a customer. (‘-ustomer.‘)

PPP: Fine. What’s the na-


I can’t believe they actually delivered the pizza. But they did.

I’m not at all convinced the little green things were really jalapenos, or the red stuff was pepperoni. But I didn’t have to make it, or heat it, or wait long for it once I got home, so it was delicious. And that’s the most fun I’ve had ordering dinner since the time we went through the Burger King drivethrough with a bunch of helium balloons.

Have I mentioned? I love this phone.

Permalink  |  1 Comment

One Response to “It’s Not Delivery, It’s De Jackass”

  1. kerry says:

    i would love to have heard what the guy told his co-workers after he got off the phone with you. lol!

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