Our home phone has become a curio, an anachronism from a bygone era that continues to take up kitchen space more out of sheer habit and a reluctance to part from tradition than for any practical purpose. Anyone worth talking to contacts us on our cell phones. The house phone, meanwhile, serves as a spam folder of sorts, storing the queries and congratulations of every retail outlet, political campaign, and fundraising drive foolish enough to believe we a) answer our home phone and/or b) will get back to them. Once or twice a week, the phone will ring and, out of curiosity, I’ll glance at the call display. Always an unfamiliar number. “Don’t answer it!”Fondy calls out from wherever she happens to be in the house. As if I didn’t know better.

Like today for instance when curiosity got the better of me and, with Fondy not around to remind me “Don’t answer it!”, I picked up. “Hello?” “Hello and how are you today, sir?“ Damnit! It was a local charity fundraising drive. And not just any local charity fundraising drive. It was the local policeman’s charity fundraising drive. Normally, I have no problem saying no to anyone that cold calls me at home, but if it’s the local police or fire department, that’s another matter. I know it’s ridiculous, but every time it happens, the highly improbable absolute worst case scenario always runs through my mind.

Two weeks later:

Me: Help! Someone’s trying to break into my house!

911 Operator: Mmmm, yeah. A police cruiser is on it’s way – but there’s no guarantee it won’t run out of gas before it gets there. Boy, now that I think about it, that lousy ten dollar contribution could’ve been a real lifesaver.

Or –

Me: What’s the problem, officer?

Officer: You were doing 51 in a 50 zone. Also, your windshield wipers match the description of a set stolen the other day. I’m afraid I’m going to have to impound your car.

Of course, I should’ve just said no. Instead, I urged the caller to try me again in a couple of months when my situation would be more amenable to making a charitable contribution. And, hopefully, Fondy would be around to yell “Don’t answer it!”.

Hey, came across something of interest to all you avid readers out there. Apex Publications, which publishes the critically acclaimed Apex Science Fiction and Horror Digest, is offering an APEX FOR LIFE subscription that, in their words “gives you Apex until you die.” Check out the website for details and some free fiction: 



I’ll be getting myself a subscription. Oh, and Sylvia and fsmn36, as the lucky winners of the last Book of the Month Club discussion random draw, you’ll both be receiving lifetime subscriptions as well. I’ll be in touch!

Now go watch the Survivor season finale and root for Cirie.

72 thoughts on “May 11, 2008: Don’t answer it!

  1. Nice to know we are not alone when it comes to not answering the home phone. Even the ring is annoying. So now ours rings once and straight to voicemail.

    And the arrogance of some of the organisations that call. They ring you, then tell you that all of their operators are busy and to hold! Are you kidding me? You are lucky I’m even answering the god damn thing. SLAM!

    You are a sweetie for posting all of these free Sci Fi fiction books and useful links! Thanks so much! I put down this blog as my mental salvation when I wasn’t too sure how much longer I could stay sane in my current situation. Reading is my new meditating. Thank You.

  2. Hey Joe,

    OOOOH I did not know you were a Survivor fan! Cool. Ever thought of trying out for the show? How about a survivor season of all producers & Writers… that would be very finny!

    Glad you are rooting for Cirie too! She deserves to win.. here’s hoping…

    Have a wonderful, peaceful Sunday afternoon!


  3. Ps… is my email worth answering. If not, no worries. But you know I had to ask!


  4. Console yourself. There are a lot of fake “police/fire department” charities out there. I always advise them to send material via snail mail. That way I can check out the alleged agency and determine if they deserve my money. It’s amazing how much that cuts down on my repeated requests for donations.
    Another day of thunderstorms, but at least my neck of the woods avoided the tornados for the day. Hope everyone is having a good Mom’s Day. Now, off to see if i can explore this strange concept called “sleep”.

  5. Enjoy Survivor. My mom has planned the entire day around the 3-hour finale…we had supper at 4.30 instead of at 6.

    Anyway, my question is………………

    What would happen if one of the actors got seriously ill? Would the script be re-written, or ould would they still have to come in, or what?


  6. Making a donation to a police charity would be money well spent. Most of these charitys are there to help support the familys of officers killed in the line of duty.

  7. Hi Joe!

    I get those calls. I don’t give them any money. I put my charitable dollars where I choose – and it’s not there.

    Does Canada have a national “do not call list?” The US one won’t stop political or charity calls, but it cut the regular spam calls to almost 0%. 🙂

    I won’t be watching Survivor, but if you’re rooting for Cirie then you can add my 1% of caring to yours.

    Have a good evening!


  8. It was a very sad episode of Survivor…those women were very crafty when it came to getting there way…survival of the fittest thats what I say…what do you think?

  9. I do the same thing… Anytime it says “unknown name and/or unknown number” I don’t answer or usually when I do I say “hello” and I’m greet by 5 or more seconds of silence….

    hmmm… A life time subscription… That’s OH SO tempting.

    So this auto generated thing that happens for each post the “Possibly related post” is very interesting as today the auto generated suggestion is “Pentagon Bomb Squad Chief Looks Back”… hmm… LOL

    Hope you had a great Sunday. Wishing you a great start to the work week. 🙂 Oh did you finish your Beat sheet??


  10. I really just use my home phone number to activate new credit cards (every four years when my one card expires, actually). But I think it might be the only way to activate said credit card. So the home phone line stays!

  11. Ok back to several Atlantis questions….

    1)Rumor has it that the Asgard are back in the flesh….True or False?

    2) Are we ever going to see Asurans such as Naim or Oberoth again?

    3) Are we ever going to get more information on what happen to the Ancients in the galaxy…Did they Ascend? Will we ever see them again?

  12. Joe,

    That’s why I love caller ID. I screen all my calls. We actually use our landline, though. I guess that’s because we know have a teenager. Well, SHE uses it.


  13. Survivor? Seriously?
    *hangs head*
    Not you too!

    Your time would be better spent watching GOOD shows. Dig out the ol’ dvds of Star Trek:DS9. Damn good show that.

    Speaking of DS9, does the Stargate franchise still have that bit of set from DS9? I know I saw it redressed in the SG1 episode Urgo, but that was eons ago.

  14. Good evening Joe, I hate those unwanted calls, and you can’t be sure that it is actually the police dept wanting a donation, we get a lot of scammers here,,I know, Really !?! you say,, Oh well, what is it they say, better safe than sorry, right, I am with Fondy, DON”T ANSWER IT!! caller id is a wonderful invention, I actually have one of the ones that announces the number outloud, great for not having to get up to see who has the nerve to dial my number.. plays havoc with my exercise program of running to the phone. oh well, the sacrifices I must make. Have a great day! 😉

  15. We were sitting around the other night discussing more efficient energy sources. I brought up the concept of the ZPM and harnessing Zero Point Energy.

    While there were some strange looks, all agreed it was a great concept – aside from the obvious issue when harnessing zero point energy of exotic particles passing into the alternate universe and the devastating results – but aside from that.

    The ZPM alone would be great. If only I was smart I would reverse engineer one.

    Ever hear on the grapevine (aside from the great experience of the Space Station call which still makes me chuckle when I think about it) of people taking your concepts and creating the physics to use in a real world application? If you have, which items are “in the works”?

    Hope you are enjoying Survivor.

    PS: Almost have the hubby watching Stargate. He’s a tradie so there’s a lot of work to be done. He watched a show on Hawkings’ Information Paradox and it has really piqued his interest. He says that all doco’s we watch somehow relate to Stargate so while watching this one I was biting my lip for a full hour. It was killing me!

    He has Sci Fi potential. He says he doesn’t like it, but he’s always the first one to claim he saw a UFO when looking through our telescope that has affectionately been named “The Hubble”. I nod and say “yes, dear”, then head for the fridge and count the number of remaining drinks.

  16. “Now go watch the Survivor season finale and root for Cirie.”

    *shakes head in dismay* Sooooo totally disillusioned now.

    I am proud to say I’ve never watched an episode of that, or American Idol, or Dancing with the Stars, or any other ‘reality’ show. (I do, however, love COPS …but that’s a different sort of thing.)

    Phone calls. Before I had caller ID and ‘do not call’, I used to answer the phone in a variety of silly ways. Once I put on a weird British accent and answered the phone as the ‘Hornblower residence’, and went on explaining to the telemarketer that Captain Horatio Hornblower was at sea fighting the French, and was not expected to return home for another 8 months. That one was fun because the girl seemed to believe me, especially when she asked me how to spell ‘Hornblower’ … 😀 I did other stuff, too…but that’s the only one I remember off the top of my head.


  17. Hi Joe!!

    How’s it going? Since it’s Mother’s Day, I’d thought I’d ask a question about mothers, one in particular. We have heard mention of McKay’s father. Will we ever hear, meet, or get a glimpse into his relationship with his mom?? Hope you had a good day! I did with my kids! Finals are all done!!! Woo Hoo!! It was tough!! I got an A in Algebra, a B in Spanish, and an A in Biology!!! Now I am looking forward to the new season of Atlantis to start!! 🙂 Have a great week!!

    Jen 🙂

  18. WOW! i’m absent from here for a few days & the whole place goes bright white! *blinks* personally i like the earth tones better.
    now on to the (other) important stuff:
    1. how are things progressing on SGU?
    2. is there any word on a 3rd sg-1 movie?

  19. By the way, what the hell is with the “Possibly Related Posts” topic today? Pentagon Bomb Squad Chief Looks Back? Was there some hidden meaning to your post today that I missed?

    Cold and flu tablets seem to cause me to post multiple times.
    Definitely going this time.

    Jenny Robin. Have a great time! You might find that the holiday is what helps the pneumonia go away. Some sun, some relaxation. Great for healing. If all else fails, go the 90% proof Vodka. That’ll scare the crap out of the infection and it will flee for it’s life – flee I tell ya!

  20. BTW about the green lantern in yesterday’s post, there was a rumor once that ben browder would play him. i know who started that, not me i assure you.
    and i think someone asked michael shanks at a con if he was going to be captain america. an untrue rumor as it turns out.

  21. This is exactly why I don’t have a landline phone anymore. The 2am calls from fax machines(I don’t even have a fax machine) sealed the deal.

    I would think it would be in the phone company’s interest to figure out a solution to this before they lose all their customers. Even being unlisted doesn’t seem to do anything as they seem to just random dial until a number works.

    If only we could have those magical Stargate radios that:
    1. Work from almost any distance (unless the plot requires interference from radiation, rock, etc.)
    2. Have ear mics that don’t seem to have any batteries or even go into the actual ear canal
    3. Connect you directly to the correct person you want to talk with just by tapping your ear gently with a finger.

    I’m not complaining, just thinking it would be nice.

  22. Wow, very generous of you, seeing as the subcriptions cost like $100 for life.. I hope they apreciate it..

  23. Hey Joe!

    Wow, a lifetime subscription, you truely are a good guy Joe. Congrats Sylvia and fsmn36, talk about an AMAZING gift! 😀

    Also, I never mentioned this before, but I absolutely love the image of one of your pugs at the top of the page (sadly, I have yet to be able to recognize all but Lulu 🙁 ). It’s a very nice touch and makes it look like s/he is peeping into the page. I like it!

    I personally hate telemarketing calls…ever since one went off their ‘pre-made sheet’ and called me a wuss for refusing to answer their questions (true story, though it makes for a good one). Makes me wish I had Call Display…and that I had reported that worker for calling me a wuss. 😛

    Thanks as always!

    – Enzo Aquarius

  24. Our home phone number is a spam folder as well. One time, the ringer was turned off for three whole weeks and we didn’t even realize it. We put ourselves on the do not call list, and the calls have really lessened. Mostly now we just get wrong numbers. I got three calls from ‘ashley’ on Thursday. Also, my home number is given at the movie store as my identification. However, currently, my cell phone is being held together by a rubber band so maybe there’s something to be said for the trusty home phone.

  25. Don’t feel too bad about trying to dodge the local policeman’s charity drive. I used to work for a government agency in the States that investigated charities fraud, so I know that sometimes the folks who call saying they’re with the local policeman’s or fireman’s charity aren’t really. Some are professional fundraisers who collect for a supposed “national” association that your local police/fireman’s organization may not even be part of. And even if they are part of it, if a professional fundraiser is being used, the local organization may only get a tiny portion of the money collected after the fundraiser’s expenses are taken out. If you want to give to your local policeman/fireman’s organization, better to just look up their address and send them a check directly.

    Of course, if you’re bored the next time solicitors call – and Fondy isn’t around to tell you not to answer – you can turn the tables by interrogating them. I’ve done this – asking bluntly if the caller is actually working for the local organization. If they say yes, I would ask what the organization’s address is and then ask for directions from the main street in town. If they aren’t really local solicitors, they either start sputtering or just hang up…And I don’t get any more calls for at least a few months. But probably the best bet is just to follow Fondy’s advice. Don’t answer the phone.

  26. I don’t give money to the police organizations that call, and I work at the police department! I don’t know for sure which ones are shady, either, and I figure if they’re for real, they know where to find me.

    I just finished three days of NO computer access and no cable TV! Geez, my parents live in the dark ages! Dad does have a computer, and he does have dial-up, but you can only use it at night so you don’t tie up the phone line, and you can play several games of Spider Solitaire veerrryyyy slowly while you wait for a page to load, so I didn’t even try.

    I spent Saturday night in the emergency room with my niece, and they have cable, but noooo, she kept insisting on Barney videos (over and over and over), so there was no fun there. She also kept telling me, with wide eyes and arms flung out, about the little boy she saw in the lobby just before I arrived: “Trow up! Lots!” She knows how to say “throw up” in sign language, too, and she likes to add sound effects. She was pretty entertaining, despite Barney.

    By the way, my nephew said he really appreciated the extra intro on Ark of Truth, since he still hasn’t seen all of SG-1. He said it really helped him follow what was going on in the movie.

  27. Alas, my 7-digit home phone is the same as a casual labor service, only mine is a regular area code, not an 800 number. I’ve learned to say “you need to dial 1-800” in several languages. I believe not being able to figure out the phone number of a job agency might signal a lack of qualification, but who am I to say? Otherwise, yeah, it’s 60% charity calls, and I haven’t bothered to pay for caller ID so I answer them all. D’oh. I regularly get fax machines calling my cell phone, so I don’t think those are immune either!

  28. How very strange. I don’t think we ever get those kind of calls here. Most of the time it’s Big Brothers asking for clothing donations, but other than that, no charity calls whatsoever. I guess we’re…lucky?

    Anyways, I watched a whole slew of SG1 episodes since last I posted, too many, actually. So, very short reviews of each:

    There but for the Grace of God – Mikey Shanks was awesome in this one, and overall I enjoyed it immensely. Unfortunately, the budget kept it from being truly epically depressing in my mind (like The Last Man), oh well.

    Politics – I hate Kinsey with the passion of a thousand exploding Suns. ‘Nuff said.

    Within the Serpent’s Grasp/The Serpent’s Lair – These two episodes were awesome. The various strategies, especially in the second episode, were very clever indeed. And man, the amount of info we learned about Goa’uld technology! Seeing Skaara and Jack’s reactions to him was nice as well. The only problem I had was with Bra’tac taking over the show in the 2nd half. Don’t get me wrong, he’s awesome, but after he showed up, SG1 pretty much took up a backseat in saving their own world, I felt. Still, very entertaining episodes, both of them.

    In the Line of Duty – Very much a setup episode, and I enjoyed it well enough. The two confrontations at the gate were tense, and Amanda Tapping was immensely creepy in this episode. Well done.

    Prisoners – Enjoyable, but fairly unremarkable. The ending twist was well-done, but on repeated viewing kind of loses impact for obvious reasons. The words showing up on the computer at the end while everyone was in darkness was quite spooky. Again, a lot of setup happening here.

    The Gamekeeper – A very interesting episode; I’d say the best of Season 2 so far excluding the premier. I pitied The Keeper, since his intentions were ultimately good (he didn’t want to ruin the planet again), and…well, he was hilarious. Seeing Jack and Danny go through their various past pains was difficult to watch, but the episode balanced it out by having, again, the Keeper, and Hammond acting so…differently. Very nice to see Kawalsky; watching the series this time around really made him a likable character that I was sorry to see killed off.

    Phew, there you go.

    Oh, and if the mailbag resurfaces: Will we see Ladon Radim in Season 5?

  29. Pah Cirie.. she the ringleader of the oestrogen brigade.
    My friend noticed that whenever the girls gave their banter, the camera would switch over to a shot of a spider eating a fly, or a slithering snake.

    Quite apt. Bring back James, Ozzie!!!

    Not gonna watch the finale of the Witches of Eastwick. *spits dummy*


    Is that your phone ringing???

  30. Ah its all very different where I live, the MOON! you see with all this wondrous technology I still don’t receive a signal on my cell phone or as we brits call them “mobiles” so I can’t get rid of my house phone the same as I can’t do without Sky TV because Cornwall is apparently in a black hole and my part of Cornwall is the arse end of said black hole, (gorgeous scenery tho!) and doesn’t recieve digital signals strong enough for our puny earthling aeriels to pick up. Still it means we’re safe from attack by inter-dimensional beings using radio frequencies to break through so I’m gonna save quite a bit on red tape and tin foil!

  31. Haha yeah, don’t make the local fire or police departments angry! I go to a huge pre-med university, and my physics teacher has similar fears for his future!!! He tried to make us learn physics with the English/Imperial system of measurement, and we refused (the whole system of measurements ought to be put in a museum or hidden away somewhere… it doesn’t work anymore!!!). The only reason he didn’t fail us is that he said he didn’t want to be having surgery 20 years down the road and be recognized by his surgeon as the physics teacher who made her freshman year hell!!!!

  32. Yeah, I think I gave up on the home phone when I went to college (or phased it out, anyway).

    Regarding yesterday’s post about superheroes, I agree that there are a lot of good stories still left to be made into movies. For that matter, they could even take a mediocre superhero and make a good movie of it, if they were good. It would at least be better than taking a good superhero and making a crappy movie out of it.

    I have to say, though, that my big comics as a kid were Spiderman and X-Men, so I kind of hope they make more of those (good ones, that is; maybe pretend X3 didn’t happen). There are still so many X-Men and related characters that should appear either in an X-Men movie or one of their own. Foremost among these, in my opinion, is Gambit. Also, maybe something with Banshee. Or X-Force. I know there’s a Magneto movie in the works. I’d love to see a movie with him that at least acknowledged the existence of his kids, Quicksilver and the Scarlet Witch. Although I think that the one story I’d most love to see made into a movie is the Age of Apocalypse storyline. Of course, they’d have to find an adequate way of condensing it somehow. And it would be great if they used the same actors as the other films, except then you run into age issues, since, for example, Magneto and Rogue are married in the AoA. But that AU did spawn a couple interesting characters that carried over, like X-Man (son of Jean Grey and Cyclops, a.k.a. AU Cable), and Dark Beast. Of course, I think I’d pop something if they made a movie based on the Marvel Zombies comics, because that would be so freaking hysterically, horribly awesome (think Iron Man’s cool, try psychotic, flesh-hungry, missing-the-lower-half-of-his-body Iron Man). (Speaking of which, as sub-par as the FF movies may be, I do prefer adorably geeky movie-Reed Richards to the creepy, cold, and kind of maniacal supergenius I’ve read in some of the comics.)

  33. Coucou joseph =) sa va ? Sayer, mon long week end est finit c’est reparti pour 3 semaine de cours + 3 jours d’éxamin avant mes grande vacance.

    Moi ne n’aime pas répondre au téléphone car la plupart du temp les appelles ne me concerne pas, plutot mes parent..Mais bon , j’aime bien qu’on décroche quand j’appelle^^!Heureusement que le téléphone éxiste qu’en même!

    Tiente je vient de penser à quelque chose, voila plus 1 ans que vient réguliérement sur votre blog! 1 ans de Bonheur^^!

    aller Gros Bisou, Bonne journée, Je vous adore ♥♥

  34. Joe, Thank you very much for the subscription. This is sooo cool. You are the very bestest!!!!

    Also plagued with the solicitation type calls and make use of the caller ID – for the unknown caller, out of the area calls, and the toll free type numbers – which are ignored. Figure if any of these calls are legit, they will leave a message on voice mail.

    One annoyance is the calls for people who used to have the number issued to me. The medical appointment calls – I have called the caller to advise that “person’s name” no longer has the number. I find it interesting to be asked if I have a forwarding number or address. Derrrr…..”…No, this number was assigned to me and I do not know the previous user…!”

    I really love the calls from credit companys for accounts in default. I asked one if they worried about the privacy act whereby their calling me about “person’s name” violated that person’s privacy because now I know that person has a financial problem. They did not seem concerned.

    And, like you, I did donate to a Police supported thing because I also has the same concerns. After that, I just do not answer.

    Fondy gives GOOD ADVICE!

  35. hey joe,

    something similar happened to me several weeks ago. I was alone at home and if some weird guy rings to sell something or wants money in any way I’m usually quick to say no, thank you and close the door.
    But this time it was more difficult. The guy that had rung the doorbell was dressed as an ambulance man. At first I was shocked thinking someone had called for help. But no, he was asking me to buy a membership and contribute a little money every month. I was kind of intimidated by that guy but all the same I stood my ground, not wanting to sign anything in front of my door. That’s just never good!
    So I stood there and said no in the nicest possible ways for about 15 min I think. But the man wouldn’t take a no for an answer. So I said “Goodbye, I’m gonna close the door now as I’m not going to sign anything now”.

  36. Caller: Hi, would you be interested in a charitable donation towards a police youth drug programme?
    Me: Sorry, I’m flat broke at the moment.
    Caller: Would there be anyone else in your household interested?
    Me: (yelling to flatmates) Do you guys want to give to charity?
    Flatmate: What’s it for?
    Me: I don’t know. I think the police are wanting to buy drugs and give them to children.
    Caller: *click*

    Little Jimmy never did get his crystal meths. 🙁

  37. Narelle from Aus:

    Ever hear on the grapevine (aside from the great experience of the Space Station call which still makes me chuckle when I think about it) of people taking your concepts and creating the physics to use in a real world application? If you have, which items are “in the works”?

    Well there’s that quantum mirror I’m building in the shed. 🙂

    Cheers, Chev

  38. Charity calls are unknown in Germany, but advertising via telephone was a great problem till the government passed a law that says that advertising calls is harassment and one is able to sue the companies for that. Now the telephone is quite silent. 😉

  39. Here’s the number 1 way I deal with spam calls. It gives you a buzz :-).

    Get a hold of some cheesy elevator style music. Then record yourself in a condescending voice saying stuff like “Please hold, someone from the residence will be with you shortly.”….”Please continue to hold, your stupid spam call is very important to us.” Then get creative…I know I did hehe. Everytime you get a call, just say, “Oh, great! I’m so glad you phoned. Give me a second!” then leave it down, play the track and see how long they last 😉

    Longest I’ve had is 16 minutes and I’m NOT joking!

  40. The day before our federal election last year I got a phone call from an unknown number. It was a recording of someone saying why they were going to vote for one of the Prime Minister candidates. I was so frustrated with the message that I actually rang the candidates office and complained about the inappropriate nature of that type of advertising. Not sure that it did much good, but telling off a real person was rather satisfying.

    Congratulations to Sylvia and fsmn36! Let us know how the subscription is.

  41. Hi joe,
    I really hate when call centres ring too! They always seem to ring when you just sit down to eat dinner! So i tell them that I will ring them back & to give me their number! Then they usually hang up!

    Have you read any of the Stargate novels?

    Is Lt Cadman in any episodes of season 5?

    Take Care & happiness always!


  42. We just let our landline go last month. With the new unlimited calling plans, it seems silly to keep it. I too yelled Don’t Answer It! to the hubby. But he would. Drove him nuts not too. He’s gotten more than one marketer to hang up on him, which he finds amusing. I do not, particularly when he tells the caller ‘The wife handles all this, you’ll have to talk to her when she’s home.” Which left me with even more daytime calls.

    Charities? I do the most direct ones I can; like going down to the cop shop and donating to Shop with a Cop, or to the food bank, or Angel Tree. We pick the weird teenagers and buy the coolest stuff we can afford for them . And I don’t know if helping other burners counts, but I’ve pitched in for eye surgeries, new computers and a mortgage payment for people I’ve only met once. If I were more able-bodied, I’d be out there do the physical labor of Burners Without Borders. Born during Katrina, it occurred to burners that we’re a mobile community with the ability to Get Stuff Done. If the temple crew can build a quarter-mile long wooden building/effigy in the desert in a week, why not use the same gear and self-sufficient volunteers to rebuild in small towns around N’awlins?

    Cirie was robbed. Robbed, I say!

  43. Over on Gateworld Brad Wright listed what he believes to be the ‘fabric of SG-1’ but didn’t mention Vala, ium not suree of your involvement with the SG-1 side of things anymore is (even if there is a that side after Continuum) but is there a general consensus you are aware of that Vala isn’t important to future movies?

    Also any plans to give some closure to the Ford storyline? It makes it difficult to grow attached to characters if they are to be given an open ended exit.

    Keep up the good work with the blog 🙂

    Joe J

  44. Hey Joe,

    I recently started to recieve spam calls via my cellphone – now that’s no fun. What’s more odd – they wanted me to take part in medical testing. WTF? Who asks someone to participate in medical experiments via a cell phone? Anyway, I think they realized I didn’t want to take new cancer causing tablets or face collapsing injections.

    Quick question, will we be treated to any Dr. Bill Lee in the upcoming Atlantis season?

  45. j’ai une question Joseph:

    Il est possible qu’un jours, il y’ai un film ou stargate atlantis et sg1 serai réuni?, avec des scéne sur la base et sur atlantis, et où les équipes de SG1 et SGA combatent le mal ensemble?

  46. Hey Joe,
    You go away for a while and you come back to find a brand new colour scheme. I like it, it’s very minimalist.

    My father died a week ago so I’ve been organising a funeral for tomorrow and all I can say is what a rip-off. Honestly, the prices for just small things is quite outrageous.

    Although, the minister who will be taking the service is a Stargate fan. So there, even the clergy like the show!

    Anyway, I liked the video of the smoke test for Whispers. It reminded me of the Dr Who 2 parter that was just shown in the UK. They had a lot of problems with smoke too. I think they also had the smoke guns.

    And I liked the title ‘The Red Shirt Diaries’. That would have been cool.

  47. I got rid of my land line a few years back when I went to cable internet. No reason for me to spend $40/mo on something I never use.

    It’s a shame, but most of those Police/Fire charities are sort of a scam. The company making the calls takes something like a 40% cut.

    As someone suggested, telling them to contact you by snail mail so you can check it out is a sure-fire way to get rid of them.

  48. Until my mother recently bought a cellphone (*gasp* The 21st century has arrived for my family!), she not only had a landline, but also didn’t have caller id. So instead she would let it ring and let the answering machine pick up. Basically, if anyone actually bothered to leave a message she would a) pick it up or b) call them back. I never found this method to be very effective considering some people just assumed she/I wasn’t home and we could miss something entirely important.

    And as for me, I’ve been without a phone (land or cell) for a whole year now. All I have to say is, thank God for email and Skype.

    I just want to say thanks again. I am so excited and utterly unable to articulate my gratitude properly.

  49. Well there’s that quantum mirror I’m building in the shed.

    Cheers, Chev

    Heh careful Chev, don’t want to be blowing yourself up with any instabilities!

    I personally would want to get my hands on a life sign’s detector. Now that would come in handy! Especially when trying to escape obnoxious family members… or making sure the boss isn’t sneaking up on you while you’re reading blog postings in your cubicle. (er… not that I’ve been caught doing non work stuff at work by the boss… nope).

    Or a wraith stunner.

    Now that would come in VERY handy. Stun-poker anyone? Winner gets to stun the player of their choosing? 🙂

    Hmm… just a thought!


  50. Oh yeah! Reading about the wrong phone numbers reminded me. My number is only ONE DIGIT off of Walmart’s pharmacy! And I don’t even SHOP at the *Evil Empire* as I have dubbed it. What scares me is not the massive amounts of eldery calling and wanting me to fill an Rx even after I explain I am NOT a pharmacy (that I expect) but it’s all the DOCTORS offices that call and are just as confused as some of the elderly. Scary!

    Of course my sister has me beat. Her old land line was one digit off of a local plumber. Oh yeah, she got those 3am panick phonecalls WEEKLY. She now has a different number, bless her soul. 😀

  51. Hi Joe,

    I loved Brad’s latest interview with Gateworld. I think he’s got his finger on the pulse of what the fans really want, and I’m not talking about online or hardcore fans. My mom and dad were so happy when I played the Continuum trailer for them. They got me hooked on SG-1 when I was younger and they used to watch on Showtime. But, and I know this is taboo to say out loud online, they haven’t watched since Jack left. I think a movie with Jack, Sam, Daniel, and Teal’c would be a real treat. Cam and Vala were just too divisive. SG-1 at its peak was all about the core and all about the Goa’uld. That’s a movie I’d pay twice as much for.

    Miss Missy

  52. Hi, Joe,

    My background includes opinion-research (not cold sales) calling. Here are three hints.

    1. Since you don’t use the home phone anyway, unplug it. At least turn the ringer to lowest volume.

    2. Make your number unlisted/unpublished. Cuts down a lot on local cold-callers using phone books. Will not affect those using randomly-generated phone numbers; 210 555 0001, 0002, 0003…

    3. Don’t just say no, say, “Please remove my number from your list.”

    Gilder, the Jill of all trades

  53. Heh…I just remembered…

    About 20 years ago (give/take) I stayed on the phone for an hour and a half with an obscene caller… 😳

    IN MY DEFENSE…I thought it was just a wrong number (the kid said he was trying to call a number that was one digit off of ours – also the number of a friend of mine), and then he started asking me harmless questions (about the number he was trying to call), and then – caught off guard – he asked me advice about something innocent, and somehow we got into a conversation…and it wasn’t until the very end that I realized what direction he was steering me in… 😯 …so I told him: “Ask your doctor about that,” and hung up.

    The kid was GOOD. I figure today he’s either a scammer, or a politician.


  54. Hey Joe,

    I was wondering (which I am sure that you did) that the Apex subscription for life is only available in the US…I was kinda disappointed. I guess I could have it sent to family in the states, but then it would take forever for me to get it. 🙁

    So what is your solution for obtaining your lifetime subscription? By the way, nice prize…you are very nice and congrats to the 2 winners.

    Back to debating fastest mail route and hoping that someone from Apex responds with an answer to my dilemma.

  55. I hate cold calls – all those irritating people trying to sell you stuff or get money for something you’ve never heard of. 😕

  56. crownglass39 wrote:

    Your time would be better spent watching GOOD shows. Dig out the ol’ dvds of Star Trek:DS9. Damn good show that.

    Speaking of DS9, does the Stargate franchise still have that bit of set from DS9? I know I saw it redressed in the SG1 episode Urgo, but that was eons ago.

    as someone currently watching DS9 from netflix, i say “hell yeah!”
    that last part i didn’t know. what was the set?

  57. I’m getting pretty bad, I don’t even answer calls from friends and family,well, I don’t ususally pick up right when it rings, I usually call back with 30 minutes. Is that bad??? I like Thornyrose’s idea about requesting the info by snail mail. Hey Thornyrose glad to hear you missed those storms, we really could use some rain here,I hope it doesn’t come in the form of a hurricane this year.

    I have a question, as far as the sci fi world goes, is it possible to travel to a parallel universe in the past or present of that universe??? Has it ever been done? If so, where?

  58. For the people without a telephone landline, you loss your phone if you have a power outage. You need power for the VOIP box. The same thing applies to cordless phones.

    In my case, I am struck with the landline for the foreseeable future. My internet access is broadband with my un-friendly phone company.

  59. Hey Joe!

    Just wondering on progress of the shep whump episode? It going to go ahead? Is it Alan’s script? 🙂

  60. I just sent off a $44.00 check to the local Sheriff’s Dept. They called 2 wks. ago—something about tickets to the circus for children who are burn victims. My husband usually shoos them off the phone when they call but I got trapped this time because the caller i.d. # identified the caller as someone from the local police station. I was so grateful at the time to hear that no one in my family was injured, sick or in jail—I fear that I may have fallen victim to a scam. Suckered. Or maybe I really did send a few kids to the circus who’d been burned in a fire. I guess I’ll never know.

  61. 1)Will any unknown fears or memories be brought up in the coming year?

    2)Do any of the team make any costly mistakes this season, something that haunts them through multiple episodes?

  62. A luddite here who still uses a land line for most of my calls. But one with Caller ID and Voice Mail. If it is number we don’t know – or is Unknown name/unknown number – or is for someone not at home – we don’t answer it. Voice mail is great for that sort of screening.

    You know Joe, considering the fun you seem have with spam e-mail I always sort figured you did the same sort of thing people on the phone. You might consider that. That way people WON’T call back.

    Telemarketer – I have to call what number? No way, I dealt with that guy and he is nuts…

    And as other’s have said, be wary of anyone claiming to be part of the police asking for money. To many times the charities that are suppose to get the money get nothing or get very little.

  63. I’m glad I’m not the only one who doesn’t answer their home phone. I use my cell for pretty much everything but local calls and I plan on going back to using just my cell phone and getting cable for both TV and internet again. I don’t worry about calling 911, because I have the number for county dispatch programmed into my cell for both speed dial and voice dial anyway.

    Have you ever tried Analog magazine, Joe? I don’t know how they are these days, but they used to have some excellent stories, plus some interesting non-fiction science articles. They’ve also debuted many Hugo winning novellas and short stories.

    Regarding yesterday’s superheroes question, I was very much looking forward to Joss Whedon’s take on Wonder Woman, but I’m not nearly as interested now that he has left the production. I’d personally like to see Coleen Doran’s “A Distant Soil” brought to the screen, but I’ve got better chances of hitting the Mega Millions lottery jackpot than that happening. :-/

    Also, since you’re a comic book buff, you might want to check out the Dabel Brothers’ new comic book series of Jim Butcher’s “The Dresden Files”. It’s done in the style of the old noir detective comics and is pretty freakin’ cool! They’ll be at Comic Con with Jim Butcher this July if you decide you want to check out their booth.

  64. Chevron7 said:

    Well there’s that quantum mirror I’m building in the shed.

    Woohoo! Let me know when it’s done. Would love to come and check it out and cause some chaos 🙂

  65. Almost everday I get left a message from the same couple of debt collection agencies looking for the “dead-beat” ex-brother-in-law. I don’t know why they continue to call (over a year now at least – they are either extremely persistant or extremely stupid). I don’t even know why they have my number and probably don’t really want to know. Soon as my job transfer is complete and they find someone who can handle my old position I’m changing my home phone number – that should end the collectors plus keep my old staff from tracking me down day/night, weekends, etc).

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