Is there a joke here other than “she’s stupid”?

Cidu Bill on Feb 11th 2013


Filed in Bill Bickel, Bottom Liners, CIDU, comic strips, comics, humor | 21 responses so far

21 Responses to “Is there a joke here other than “she’s stupid”?”

  1. padraig Feb 11th 2013 at 09:40 am 1

    Compulsive earnestness, a characteristic of many receptionists. “So and so isn’t here, would you like to speak to … Wait, they’re not here either.”

  2. Daniel J. Drazen Feb 11th 2013 at 09:55 am 2

    The idea is kind of literary:

    “I’m nobody. Who are you?” Emily Dickinson
    “noone loved him more by more” e e cummings
    “Making all his nowhere plans for nobody” The Beatles

  3. Mark R Feb 11th 2013 at 10:14 am 3

    It made me think of Catch 22 and the doctor who would only let people in to see him after he had left and was gone.

  4. James Schend Feb 11th 2013 at 10:23 am 4

    @Mark I was thinking of Catch-22 also. You can go in the office and wait, but he’s not there and he won’t come back while you’re in there.

  5. Keera Feb 11th 2013 at 11:56 am 5

    Reminds me of where I work: Sometimes, when I’m all alone in the department, some co-worker will come by and asks if nobody’s here. I’ve taken to answering yes. Hasn’t disappointed anybody yet.

  6. Mike Feb 11th 2013 at 01:11 pm 6

    It could be a play on the thing where people tell the receptionist to say they aren’t in, but she’s too dumb to realize that means whoever it is doesn’t want any calls. But I’m going to go with “vaguely absurdist joke that’s chuckle-worthy as long as you don’t think about it too much”

  7. jjmcgaffey Feb 11th 2013 at 01:35 pm 7

    Huh. I thought the joke was modern absurdity - if no one’s in, she can put you through to their individual voice mails. I get that a lot. It’s a weak joke, but it’s a kind of joke…

  8. Ron Feb 11th 2013 at 04:04 pm 8

    Did no one else think, “Who’s on first”?

  9. J-L Feb 11th 2013 at 04:31 pm 9

    Basically, the first and second sentences are often spoken and, in this case, spoken on auto-pilot. She doesn’t realize (perhaps a temporary lapse due to the monotony of her job) that they don’t go well together.

    This reminds me of something that happened to me once several years ago at the dentist’s office:

    When I had finished a dental check-up, the secretary asked, “When would you like to schedule your next check-up?”

    Since I normally have difficulty planning for things six months in advance, I asked, “Could you send me a reminder in six months so we can schedule a new appointment then?”

    Her response: “We can do that. So when would you like to schedule your next check-up?”

  10. mark d Feb 11th 2013 at 05:47 pm 10

    Just getting through is an accomplishment in itself.

  11. Narmitaj Feb 11th 2013 at 07:38 pm 11

    Maybe she is mistaking “No one” for a name - Mr Nowan, or Miss Noh Wun.

    Or much as the (British) TV ad used to go, “Nothing works faster than ANADIN!” - so everyone else said, OK, let’s use nothing then. If No-One is in, then I can speak to him.

  12. jp Feb 11th 2013 at 08:10 pm 12

    At the risk of being banned from this site…

    …does this happen to be a New Yorker cartoon?


  13. Mark in Boston Feb 11th 2013 at 09:20 pm 13

    I like the autopilot idea. Did you ever go to a fast-food restaurant and order some fries just to see if the order-taker would ask “Do you want fries with that?”

  14. Dave in Boston Feb 11th 2013 at 10:02 pm 14

    Maybe the caller’s looking for someone called “Nev yn”.

  15. mitch4 Feb 11th 2013 at 11:11 pm 15

    I saw at frst the comment at #11 and rushed off to pick up the quotation below — then see that Daniel at #2 already noted the relevant part.

    But just for the inherent enjoyment, here’s a little more of that e.e. cummings:

    anyone lived in a pretty how town
    (with up so floating many bells down)
    spring summer autumn winter
    he sang his didn’t he danced his did

    Women and men(both little and small)
    cared for anyone not at all
    they sowed their isn’t they reaped their same
    sun moon stars rain

    children guessed(but only a few
    and down they forgot as up they grew
    autumn winter spring summer)
    that noone loved him more by more

  16. fj Feb 12th 2013 at 09:51 am 16

    My interpretation was the same as jjmcgaffey’s (#7), above: even though no one is in, she’ll gladly patch you through, which is actually potentially useful (since it you can leave voice mail), but it also sounds a little absurd.

  17. Myth Feb 12th 2013 at 10:09 am 17

    I took it as commentary on some customer service phone lines. I’ve had a number of occasions when one person would forward me to an empty department, requiring me to hang up and start the call over anew.

  18. Charlene Feb 12th 2013 at 01:03 pm 18

    Nobody is “in” - in other words, everyone’s *pretending* to be out so they don’t have to bother answering the phone and can nurse their hangovers or goof off. This doubles the receptionist’s workload, since she now has to take messages, call around looking for someone to take urgent calls, find the right voicemail, make sure her superiors actually listen to their voicemails, etc. She has said “to heck with this” and is putting calls through anyway.

  19. Proginoskes Feb 13th 2013 at 02:10 am 19

    Hey! I recognize this woman! It’s CNN’s Deborah “Does climate change cause asteroids?” Feyerick …

  20. Mark in Boston Feb 13th 2013 at 08:17 pm 20

    Oh come on! Everybody knows it’s President Obama’s failed policies that cause asteroids!

  21. Proginoskes Feb 15th 2013 at 02:47 am 21

    @ Mark in Boston: Yeah, it’s ALL his fault, because there were NO Presidents before Obama.

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