I'm very good at not answering the telephone. I can easily not answer the telephone for months or years - we have caller ID, if it's from a toll free number or if I don't know who it is, I don't answer it. They can leave a message if they wish. Of course I can't quite remember how to access the messages, but that's another issue. I have it written down on a post-it note somewhere.
We've had the phone for about 3 years - I wasn't even sure we needed a land-line phone, but when we bought the house and set up TV and internet, it was part of the package. It's a good back up.
Pretty much from Day 1, we've received calls from debt collectors. Back in the begining Patti Anne would answer the phone and talk to them, and they'd always be trying to get in touch with someone we never heard of. In fact, they'd run down a list of names they had associated with our phone number, none of whom we had any clue about. So the calls died down for awhile, but now they're coming back.
So one of these people left us a very threatening voice mail. Although when you think about it, the whole thing shows just how impotent the caller really was. He never identified himself or his company, he never said what it was he was calling about, and he never said what was going to happen if we didn't respond, and I'm not sure, but I think that might be illegal. He just seemed very angry that we hadn't returned any of his previous calls (which neither of us were even aware of), and said that if we didnt return his call he was going to take some (unspecified, of course) drastic action.
I thought, why bother telling us? Take you're unspecified drastic action. We don't have the need to know.
I'm not stupid, this was a debt collector trying to collect money from somebody who had given this number, most likely at random, as contact information. And I'm also not threatened. I know that if he had any real ability to collect money from whoever it is he's trying to collect money from, he wouldn't be calling us. And if someone really was trying to get money from us, they'd send us registered letters, things we'd have to sign for, with written threats and lawyers' names and pending legal actions and such. That's a much better threat than an angry voice mail.
I'm really very, very good at not answering telephones. It's part of my nature.