Friday, 4 August 2006

amusements from the phone line

My days are spent answering the 1-800 line, very silly questions, befuddled cooks, bittersweet attempts and some downright ridiculous requests.
- the young man calling to ask if there was an amount of food colouring that would be toxic. Seems that he had bet his buddies $50 that if you drink enough of a food colour you would pee out that colour. He lost the $50. [ FYI: 10,000 28 mL bottles in 24 hours would be the toxicity level for a 150 lb person.]
- people who are upset that I am telling them to discard the 14 year old pouch of gravy mix because they think it still may be good and they could use it sometime. [As if over 14 years you would have found the occasion to use it if you really wanted to.]
-the young kids who call to find out exactly how much alcohol there is in vanilla extract and is it really a cheap/easy way to get drunk. [artificial extracts are about 8.5 to 9.5% alcohol; the pure vanilla extract can be almost 35% alcohol, and that is not a cheap drunk.]
-the lady that wanted to return a few bottles of spice that she no longer thought she needed. She was upset that the grocery store would not take them back. ...and why would I not help her or take them back myself [maybe because they were 3 years old, were bought in another country and she found them cleaning out her dead sister's kitchen cupboard!]
-and then there are those sweet older men who want to know how to make a roast with all the trimings, pot of chili, spaghetti sauce, etc which they have not had since their wife passed away and they miss her (her cooking?) so much and want to try to make what she used to. [These ones always get me.]
- Or the Moms who call because their 2 year old painted the white cat purple with food colouring and the cat now seems very high-strung and upset. [wonder why???]
-Or the man who opened the pouch of spaghetti sauce seasoning mix and was upset that when he dumped it out there was no pasta and tomato sauce, his wife used to buy this and she had a pot of sauce and pasta ready after she opened it up.
-and the lady who called me (in a furious state) to find out where 1 cup of her berries went, she measured out 4 cups of berries, 1 1/2 cups of sugar and stirred it up together but now she only had 3 cups of jam.. and "just where did that missing cup of berries go?" [I swear I did not take it, I was 500 miles away and at the other end of the phone line.]

Some work days are so crazy......


  1. What I want to know - is how did you get this job? Do you have a degree in spice-lology and perhaps a little psychology too?

    Thanks for sharing your stories.

  2. Hummm . . I left a comment last night and it didn't show up . . . or did it show up somewhere else?

    Anyway, I wanted to know if you have to have a degree in spice-ology and psychology to do your job? And ho do you get a degree in spice-ology?


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