Well, am I ever glad I wasn’t taking calls for the week around Christmas, because apparently, all the local phone freaks had me on speed-dial. When I cleared my voicemail on the 26th, while there certainly were some legitimate messages from both good regular guys and some potential new folks, there were also a number of really bizarre messages.
Weird-ass message number one: A guy who called and yelled, "Mistress Matisse! Mistress MAH-teeeeeeeese!" and then howled over and over, like he was doing an a cappella version of the Warren Zevon song, Werewolves of London. His voice had that oddly hollow, echo-y sound that you hear when someone is using a speaker-phone. He was taking advantage of the hands-free situation by also banging loudly on something – sounded like a tabletop or a counter – with one hand. I have no idea what he was doing with the other.
Weird-ass message number two: This one isn't that weird, although it's mildly frustrating. It was a woman caller who, while she claimed to have studied my website, apparently missed the fact that I don't see female clients. But I swear, the message was about two minutes long and she's just rambling the whole time, without ever actually finishing a sentence or even giving me any relevant information that would help me refer her to someone else. "I've been wanting to come see you because…oh, you know, I've just had these thoughts about, um…I think the main thing is…Well, let me just ask you…Oh, well, I'll call you back."
This doesn't make her a bad person, and I understand being nervous, but for god's sake, you called me. Have a sentence or two formed in your head, please. Or just hang up, but don't make me sit through one hundred and twenty seconds of verbal static in the vain hope of picking up even one key word.
Weird-ass message number three: We're definitely back in what-the-fuck? territory here. This caller left me a message that went as follows:
"How much drugs do you do?" (Heavy pause. He's speaking in a harsh, interrogatory tone. That street-smart, take-a-look-at-yourself-scumbag tone favored by prime-time TV show cops when they talk to petty criminals.) "How much drugs do you do? No, no. Let's not even talk about your whoring. But how much drugs do you do, huh? Huh?"
What, is Dr. Phil cold-calling people now? Is my phone number one numeral off from this guy's ex-wife's? Is Narcotics Anonymous doing an outreach program?
He spoke with the exaggerated deliberateness that I always associate with drunk people, and that, combined with that fact that the call came through after 2am, makes me think that the caller probably knows a hell of a lot more about drugs than I do, because my experience with recreational pharmaceuticals is actually quite limited. When I stop and think about it, I realize it's been several years since I illegally partook of any controlled substance. But gee, in this impersonal age, it's nice to know that someone out there is concerned about me.
Weird-ass message number four: A guy who wanted (I think) a session for himself and his girlfriend. That isn't weird in and of itself, but he was another late-night rambler, and he spent several minutes giving me a long-winded physical description of himself and his lover that was highly specific, yet also strangely disjointed. (How much drugs do you do?) Oddly, he also told me so much about their ethnic heritage that I could practically draw them up a genealogy chart. "She's one-quarter Cherokee Indian – no, no, Apache Indian, Apache Indian! And one-quarter Scottish, and half French. And I'm one-quarter German on my mother's side, and…" Not only can I not imagine why he thinks a dominatrix would want to know this, I really can't think of any life situation where knowing that someone was one-quarter Scottish has seriously influenced my opinion of them.
Weird-ass message number five: Another woman caller, not a would-be client, though. At least, I don't think so, although frankly I'm not sure what she wanted. Over the sound of what I think was opera music in the background, she said;
"Hi, my name is (X) I was told you knew a lot about…how to start out. I'm friends with (woman's first and last name) and she told me about you. Would you give me a call at XXX-XXXX."
I have no earthly way of knowing what this woman is talking about. The most obvious guess is that she wants to be a pro dom and she wants me to tell her how to do that. (Yeah, right.) But maybe she just means "start out in the community", or "start out topping my husband" or, something else entirely. Who knows? She mentioned this other woman's name like she expected me to recognize it, but I don't. Maybe she has me mixed up with another pro dom? And unfortunately for her, this woman (?) has a rather husky voice, making me wonder if she really is a woman, or a guy looking for free phone sex. But either way, I'm not calling back.
And just to round out the whole experience, we have…Weird-ass message number six: It's The Howler again. "Mistress Matisse! Mistress MAH-tee-EEE-eee-EEE-cee!" He draws out the last word and lets his voice go up and down like a roller coaster. Next, he gives a few howls, but then, for a nice touch of variety, he starts barking. Really enthusiastically. He yells my name a few more times, and then barks and beats on the table – or whatever it is. I guess he's switched from Warren Zevon to Baha Men. "Who let the dogs out?" indeed…