September 20, 2001    





What is the cleverest answering machine message you've heard?

"We know who you are and what you want, so at the sound of the tone, please hang up!"

Eric, 19
Beverly Hills

Hello?........hi! how are you?........... I'm great!............. guess what?......... you're talking to my answering machine right now. leave a message. BEEP

Dianne, 16
Ontario  CANADA

My friend had her children, ages 5-10, record the message and although I usually don't care for it when kids record something, this one is different. The kids are little hams, each one of them. They are alert and easy to understand.

Reba, 51+
Silver Spring
, MD   USA

Most of my friends just have plain boring "you've reached 555-1212 leave a message" messages, but I've had some that I've liked. Once my girlfriend and I used a snippit from Space Ghost (Brak's "one time I hired a monkey to take notes for me in class" story for those of you familiar with it) - it was a LONG snippit and I think it scared away some of the telemarketers, but our family and friends were irritated that it took so long to leave us a message! My parents came up with a good one several years ago, and my stepdad recorded it to the tune of Major General - I'll replace my mother's name with Susan, my stepdad's name with Bill, and my name with Lizabeth. (Yeah, they're dumb, but the syllables match.)

It said:
I am the very model of a modern answering device
For Susan Bill or Lizabeth a message would be very nice
So leave your name and number and a message when you hear the tone
And they will call you back as soon as they can find the telephone

etoile, 20

The ones where you think you're actually talking to the person at very first, only to get a beep in your ear while you're talking. Those are pretty convincing.

Fisch, 46
, CT   USA

a friend of mine has a voicebox that is him saying,  "hello...hello...hello??"  and when you call you dont know if he actually picked up or if its his voicebox. its fun when he really does pick up lol. and on my answering machine once i tried to record a basic one, but my mom didnt know what i was doing and thought i was talking to her so shes yelling "what?? whaT??!" during the whole thing. but my dad deleted it cuz he said its unprofessional for his business.

Karen2, 15
, MA   USA

I hate "clever" answering machine messages. Straightforward ones are quicker and less annoying.

Jane, 60
West Linn
, OR   USA

I used to like, "This is the refrigerator. The answering machine can't come to the phone right now, but if you leave me a message I'll try to remember it." Now, though, I just kind of like "BEEP!" That's the message they have on RENT.

Karen, 21

My nephew recorded one for his parents. "Welcome to our answering machine. The rules are as follows: No drinking. No smoking. No shoes. No shirts. No service. No pennies. Thank you and have a nice day." There were more rules, but I can't remember them. And it sounds just like the recording for a movie theater.

Laura, 36
, MA    USA

I'm partial to terse answering machine messages. Few clever messages are funny for a second time and no clever message is witty when I'm in a hurry.

Jill, 60

Most of the time I find clever or goofy message a bore. Of course, this attitude changes from time to time.

Felicia, 35
, MA   USA

I used to have one that said "I'm not home right now so feel free to break in. There's a key under the mat, the combination to the safe behind the very expensive painting is 13 left, 22 right, 7 left. Also there's some leftover cake in the fridge, knock yourself out."

Alias Irrelevante

My friend Mike had one with a fake beep that fooled everyone. My pal Trev used to do the "Hello..."{ with a pause so you weren't sure it was an answering machine. But, I think the greatest was when my bestest friend Linda had a multiple choice thing on her machine. It was like: "Push one to learn about the facts of life. Push two to learn about rhinos in Africa, If you liked my purple pajamas, push three..."

Jaden, 21
Brampton, Ontario  CANADA

clever? hmmmm. . . .i sorta enjoyed one i heard the other day, where a landlord was saying, pretty casually, what he wanted in a potential tenant(have a job, clean, quiet. . .) if that's what the caller was calling about. . the message went on to say if you didn't meet these qualifications to please not waste his or the caller's time further, thank you very much. .

mothmc, 37
Los Angeles

when the recording says," hello? hello? I can't hear you. what? what? oh yeah I'm not home right now leave me a message." I thought that was cool.


I used to like the one on my mom's machine about how the rest of the household appliances kidnapped the answering machine because they were jealous of how it got all the calls. After my dad died, I got tired of fielding calls for him, so I recorded this on the machine:

If you'd like to speak to Kristin, please call (cell number) or leave a message. If you're calling for Everette, please press one repeatedly until you die. (or, alternately) If you're calling for Everette, go to hell, because I'm pretty sure he didn't go to heaven.

Kristin, 20

My nephew have one that is very clever. It starts out with Hello.. the is the Smith's answering machine. The rules are as follows: there's no: boating No fishing, no swimming, no jumping. no eating, no shoes, no shirt, no service, and it goes on in a droning voice with several other No's and ends with have a nice day.

Janet, 44
E. Brunswick

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