“For two (2) dollars I will call your friend or enemy or boss or whoever and pretend to be a turtle for up to two (2) minutes. I am the first and best company for your turtlecall needs — the copycats may be cheaper but they barely even sound like real turtles.” This is the sales pitch for a totally real service called turtlecalls.com. Think of it as a time-limited, targeted prank call. Below is an example, in which “Skip in Texas” receives a turtlecall paid for by a friend (or enemy, or employee — who knows). Skip is a wildlife cameraman who has more important things to do than talk to a fake turtle, though he does hand out some very reasonable diet tips regarding turtles eating at Wendy’s.
Here’s a sample line. Pretend Turtle: “Dude, you can wash your camera later, you only get one chance to talk to a turtle.”
In addition to the regular $2 turtlecall, there is a $3 cheadlecall, “where i will call and pretend to be a turtle pretending to be Don Cheadle” (the turtle has also done at least one call as Beyoncé Knowles); and a $10 super turtlecall: “this turtlecall has advanced features like that I will keep calling until I do not get a voicemail, even if it takes weeks.”
There are many, many more on turtlecalls.com. This is one busy turtle. In my opinion, the best thing about the turtlecalls is that most turtlecall recipients kinda go with it. There are clear stages to most conversations: first, trying to identify who the caller is; second, dealing with the clear fact that this is not really a turtle talking; third, small talk as the pretend turtle tries to engage the recipient in two minutes of conversation; finally, the recipient tries to get the pretend turtle off the phone, with the primary excuse being some poorly defined job responsibility.