May I say who is calling?

When you place a telephone call and the receptionist says “who may I say is calling,” you give your name.  Right? 

One day years ago, I got this question when I called a close friend.   My eyes narrowed and I responded “this is his parole officer.”   A few weeks later, I identified myself as “his tap dance teacher.”   A few weeks ago, I said “I’m from the Garden Shop and I wanna know – do I dump this load of manure on his driveway or in the front yard.”   

I called my Boy Scout pal Doctor Bill in Lexington, Ky.  “Who’s calling please?”  I said I was putting the new roof on his house.  Well – patients took a back seat for the moment.  He quickly answered and said “WHAT??”   Apparently he’d just asked for a quote on a new roof and was debating the subject.  We all gets the “who’s calling please” business and — maybe it’s just me — one day I decided to be different.  “My name is Marv McClurg from the Reader’s Digest.  I’m calling about his million dollar prize.”  And I hear in the background . . . sir – this man’s calling about your million dollar prize.   

At this point, when I call and say “This is Nelson Snodgrass from the White House,” receptionists will giggle and tell the recipient – always with a smile – “Scott’s on the phone. . . .”