DEAR ABBY: This may not be a big deal, and probably isn't worth space in your column, but here goes:
I have a suggestion for doctors and dentists: Please ask your staff to call and remind people of their appointment times. Some of us can get the times and dates confused.
Also, many people have difficulty hearing, especially on the telephone. When you leave a message on our answering machine, don't speak "rapid fire" in a pitch more suitable for high school or college kids, because we simply won't get the message. -- MAJ. BEN WALLACE, U.S.A.F. (RET.), TUCSON
DEAR MAJ. WALLACE: Your suggestions are a "big deal." In fact, I consider them a "major" contribution to my column! Thank you for sending them.
You are not the only person who has problems deciphering answering machine messages. Read on:
DEAR ABBY: This letter is directed to anyone who leaves a message on voice mail. PLEASE slow down when giving your name, address and phone number; this is not a race against the beep!
You may not get the information needed or the return phone call if you do not enunciate and give information slowly.
If you are calling from a cell phone, this is imperative. Technology hasn't yet provided a clear connection with voice mail. If you are calling from your car, it can be especially difficult.
If leaving your message is, indeed, a race against the beep, leave only your name and phone number. I'd rather return the call than replay the message five times. -- STRAINING TO HEAR, RICHFIELD, MINN.
DEAR STRAINING: I hear you loud and clear. And now, I have a message for you: Thank you for a practical suggestion.