Wednesday, July 05, 2006

Early Morning Intrigue (Strangeness Abounds)

Early this morning, around 6:00 AM, I was jolted awake when my cell phone began shrieking like an air-raid siren, the sound it makes when the caller has blocked their number. Lately, the only time I hear this ringtone (which was my phone's default ring for private numbers) is when the latest in the succession of insurance adjustors calls. (But never this early. )

The noise caused the sleeping Rachel to stir and I didn't want to wake her, so I answer answered it in a low, almost whisper-like voice. (I also hoped the called would get the point that they woke me up by calling so early.) My participation in the conversation consisted of one word.


There was a man's voice on the other end. It sounded distant and he seemed to pronounce some of his words with an English accent.

I just wanted to give you advance that you were chosen to be the [something that ended in -tor but I didn't quite catch it] of the tow-heap. [I assume it's spelled and hyphenated as such, though it's not a term with which I'm familiar.] This means you'll be expected to translate the Book of Carlyle. You'll get official communication within the next two hours.

And then he hung up.


Well, 4+ hours have passed and I have received no official communication, which is fine, since I'm not sure I want to be the something-tor or anything else of the tow-heap. Even more so if it turned out to be a toe-heap. And as for the Book of Carlyle, my French is pretty rusty, so unless it's written in Pig Latin, the official communicators (and I'd love to know who they are) would have had to do without my translation prowess, anyway.

I did Google all variations of tow-heap and The Book of Carlyle and nothing came up for any of it. I'll just file this one under: WTF???


Blogger Schroeder said...

Could it be you've been caught up in the national security dragnet via The Carlyle Group?

9:16 PM  
Blogger pi22seven said...

I bet this is part of some ancient secret society thing that the Earth's future hangs on and the guy called the wrong number and was too embarrassed to come clean.

"I'm sorry, but I made a mistake when I called you earlier. Rest assured that the real [something that ended in -tor that you didn't quite catch] of the tow-heap has been contacted and all is well now. Sorry for the bother."

Happens all the time.

10:34 PM  
Anonymous Addict said... long as the phone didn't self-destruct at the end of the mysterious, it's all good...

11:52 PM  
Blogger LisaPal said...

Schroeder, in the absence of any officially designated Book of Carlyle, that was the only thing I could think of...that perhaps someone was going undercover to audit their books and dig up some worthy dirt. And maybe the dirt is the tow-heap. In any event, it wins the prize strangest phone call I've ever received. And it did add a little amusement to an otherwise very dull day.

Pi-Man!!! How I've missed you! I do hope that saving the world didn't depend on the call's intended receiver getting *an advance,* and that Earth's future is indeed safe.

Happens all the time. The way you put it, with the wrong number explanation, made me recall a similar wrong number incident from several years ago.

Rachel's dad and I worked together and tried our best to keep our relationship under wraps. In these old days of analog cellular phones, connections were often quite crappy. One day I called our office to leave him a message on his extension, but I could barely hear the greeting. I left the message anyway. I can't remember exactly what I said, but I believe there were professions of love and maybe something about looking forward to the time we'd be spending together. We used to leave little love messages like this for each other all the time.

After I finished, I remembered that the greeting message sounded like it might have been someone else's. Turned out I was right. Thank God it was after hours. I went to the office and because I couldn't hack into this guys voice mail, I had to take down the entire phone system to erase it! (Talk about feel like a secret agent!) Rachel's dad owned the business and it was done not only with his blessings, but at his urging. We were both very relieved that I was able to spare us of complete embarrassment. (No doubt everyone in and around the company would have been treated to hearng that message.) More bothersome about the situation was the possiblity that the unintended recipient would have thought that I intentionally left the message for him. But that would have been a stretch, as something like that is quite out of character for me in general, and even more so since he and I didn't like each other very much. And I'm pretty sure he knew that John and I were involved and would have known who the message was for, anyway.

11:57 PM  
Blogger LisaPal said...

Addict, your comment appeared while I was working on mine. I'm happy to say that nothing self-destructed. :-)

11:59 PM  
Blogger Schroeder said...

Took down the *ENTIRE* phone system to erase one message?

Wow! Can you break into the NSA?

8:43 AM  
Blogger LisaPal said...

Yes, the ENTIRE office phone system but alas, I had unrestricted access and I did have some schematics and a basic working knowledge of how it's failsafes, etc. I can be pretty resourceful when I need to be and I think that was the first time I heard Rachel's dad call me a f**king genius, which delighgted me to no end. I'd give the NSA a try, but they've probably homed in on our communique already and will surely foil any attempts to beat them at their own game.

Oh, my life is so humdrum now...

10:25 AM  
Blogger Ray in New Orleans said...

There are one or two emails and Usenet posts that I would have taken apart the entire Internet to get rid of, if I knew how.

11:22 AM  
Blogger Another Outspoken Female said...

Let me know when your shoe phone arrives :)

5:56 PM  
Blogger Schroeder said...

Looking forward to your next post, but until then, you've infected my brain with this Book of Carlyle/Tow Heap crap.

So here's what I found -- see if you find any significance in this (turnabout is cruel play):

Nine-letter mnemonics derived from the phone number 97335863432 with one digit added to the end:

9 peek toe heap
9 peel toe heap
9 reel toe heap
9 seek toe heap
97 eel toe heap
9 re el toe heap

Who comes up with this stuff?

Ahhh ... the internet is a bottomless cesspool of random garbage.

Just kidding. Don't give it another thought (see if you can ... mwah ha ha ha haaaa).

Sweet dreams.

11:39 PM  
Blogger Richard said...

hhhmmm... intrigue indeed. Here is my contribution to the mystery. hey pi-man, long time no speak, have you been being an international man of mystery?

7:27 AM  
Blogger Richard said...

p.s. thanks for the ee link schroeder.

7:29 AM  
Anonymous dangerblond said...

What's the frequency, Kenneth? Kenneth! What's the frequency?

3:30 PM  
Blogger muse said...


well, if you _do_ need a French translator's help... LOL

I'm quite proficient in nutball-ese too. ;)

1:55 PM  
Blogger LisaPal said...

Phooey! I lost my original comment! I had assembled a very interesting assortment of the best anagrams for tow-heap and Book of Carlyle, but alas,they are lost. I suspect that Richard may have been trying to link to something like this, but his link just reloads this page of comments.

Richard, if it was something else, link it again... we don't want to miss it.

3:51 AM  
Blogger LisaPal said...

BTW, you guys are cracking me up. Thanks!

3:52 AM  
Blogger Richard said...

I was suggesting that maybe it was a book by Carlyle, and this would be the most likely culprit

2:55 AM  

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