Whether it’s smelling smoke, getting in a car accident, or having a health emergency, many of us girls have had some reason or another to call 911 at some point in our lives. Still, there’s just no good way to get past the feeling that you’re hassling the person on the other end of the phone, cause I mean come on: You’re probably just blowing things out of proportion, right? But wait, you should call though, right? If it’s an emergency? Ughhh, this is hard! Here are some face-saving intros for the next time you call to report that someone’s face is on fire:
“I am so sorry to bother you, I wasn’t sure who to call about this, but a man broke into my house and is robbing me.”
Opening with an apology is key for letting someone know you are sorry. You don’t want the operator to think you’re some jerk barging into their life with some intense problem for them to solve, do you? That’s just selfish. If you don’t start with an unconfident apology, you might just deserve to be robbed, since you’re probably robbing that 911 dispatcher of a fun conversation with their coworker.
“Honestly, this is so dumb and probably nothing, but a plane just crashed in my backyard?”
How often have you been wrong in your life? A lot, right? 911 operators deal with a lot of false alarms. Are you sure the winged craft that just zoomed past your bedroom window and erupted into a fireball was a plane? What are you, a plane expert? No. Show some humility by allowing for the possibility that you have no idea what the hell you’re talking about.
“Okay so first off I can be a total drama queen, ask anyone, it’s my least good quality and I’m trying to change it, like, meditate and whatever, but um, I’ve been shot?”
We all have our flaws. Some of these flaws affect emergency services personnel more than others. You are known for having feelings that sometimes exist or are strong, which is a huge hassle for others. Acknowledging that you are known to blow things out of the water by expressing urgent needs is a great way to introduce yourself as a potential rescue. Also, bullets are like, super small. How bad can being shot actually hurt? Typical you, making a huge deal out of something the size of a bullet.
“That was me who just called and hung up, I am so sorry to bother you, just forget about it, it’s just that my car got hit by an oil tanker and I thought I needed the Jaws of Life or whatever, but it’s really no big.”
Wait…you know it’s a crime to make prank 911 calls, right? Do you want to go to jail? Please consider letting your phone melt in the fire that’s consuming your Kia Sorrento before bothering the fire department. You could keep them from helping people with real problems. Honestly, why are you such an attention whore?
“Hi so I know you guys are so busy and you work super hard, my aunt is an EMT and she tells us all the time about how crazy people will call for whatever reason, and I work in customer service so like, I totally feel you, but a lot of snakes are biting me over and over, sort of.”
There’s nothing like empathizing with someone’s difficult job to make them open to what it is you have to say. Let them know about your relative or friend or high school boyfriend’s dad who worked in a branch of their profession, and they might just hear you out. Emergency services will thank you, if you’re not dead by the time you work up the courage to call. What were you even doing in that canyon, anyway?
Use these conversation starters the next time you feel like hassling the good hardworking folks at 911.