Sunday, August 09, 2009

9 AUG 09: Duck and Cover

TRUE NEWS ITEM: Columbus emergency personnel held a mock security drill Saturday on the grounds of Aflac headquarters along Brown Avenue.

"Columbus 911. What is your emergency?"


"Could you repeat that, please?"


"Ma'am, is this some kind of prank call?"


"I'm going to pass you on to my supervisor, OK?"

"What's the problem here?"

"A caller keeps saying Aflac, but won't say anything else. And her voice sounds funny."

"Have we tracked the location?"

"The phone number connects to the Aflac Tower, all right. On Wynnton Road."

"Send a full unit to Wynnton. I'll try to calm her down."

"Right away."

"Thank you for waiting. This is the 911 Supervisor. Can I have your name, please?"


"Be calm, now. We've already determined you're at the Aflac Tower. What's the nature of your emergency?"


"Are you being held hostage, and that's all you're allowed to say?"


"Is anyone there with you, who can talk to me? Anyone there?"

"Full unit on the way to Aflac Tower."

"Good. I can't get her to say anything else, either. It's like she has a one-word vocabulary."

"Unit 18 to base."

"Go ahead, 18."

"Do we know exactly where in the building this caller is?"

"Not sure, 18. Start in the lobby, and be careful."


"I'm sorry, that doesn't add up to 18."

"What's that supposed to mean?"

"You know, maybe if we hooked the caller up to that voice pattern technology...."

"Oh yeah. That thing left over from the state police and fire games. Good idea. Bring it in here."

"Right away."

"Unit 18 to base."

"Go ahead, 18."

"We're still trying to figure out that last message. But we're in the lobby, and the security person here doesn't know what's going on."

"Well, that makes two of us. Let's see if I can put the phone speaker to the radio. Caller, are you still there?"


"Can you identify yourself for the security guard, please?"


"He says he didn't hear it all that well."


"OK, base. We think we've resolved this."

"What happened, Unit 18?"

"The security guard is heading to the basement."

"Does he need police support? We've got plenty of them sitting here."

"No, that won't be necessary. The guard says he got busy an hour ago, and missed duck feeding time."

"We copy, Unit 18. But do we know who placed the call?"

"That apparently WAS the duck, base."

"That's strange. We thought duck calling didn't start until November."

SCHEDULED MONDAY: A more kosher army, and a stack of your e-mails....

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