The Caller ID number was local; in fact, it was from the town where our church is located, so I answered the phone, fully expecting a recorded message about upcoming parish events.
Instead, it was a live person. Because she asked to speak with a family member who is currently nearly 5000 miles away, I asked if I could take a message.
"There ain't no message," the caller responded. "I'll call back."
Well. There ain't none of our friends who talk like that, so I figured this was a solicitation call of some sort and hung up. (I'm tempted to tell the next caller that I'm voting in the upcoming election for anyone who does not call to solicit my vote.) But I wonder. Who would entrust his message to someone who talked like that to potential customers/voters?
Then again, I shouldn't be so hard on her. She was probably a minimum-wage hireling, and I've seen worse from official business documents, major newspapers, and professional websites. I know that language evolves, but "anything goes" cannot be the mark of a higher civilization.