Thursday, April 12, 2012

The Many Voices of Michael Terpening

If you are around Jamie Moore Bell enough, you will hear her talk highly of her nephew, Michael. She can humor someone for awhile with childhood stories of Michael's. I remember her fondly recalling a time when Michael had borrowed her car as a teenager. Before he returned home, he called her and asked if it would be OK to bring a friend home with him. She agreed, and before long, Michael appeared with her car.

The "friend" turned out to be a goat. Not only did he have a goat in the car, but he had also brought along a bale of hay with that goat. I can only imagine the

Michael loves to play pranks on people and has a tendency to freak some of us out. Jamie complained on a few occasions the various ways Michael would mess with her on the phone by changing his voice. After being raised together, it would seem like Jamie would know better. Sometimes she catches him, other times he can make her angry, and she will fall for the prank.

One day, in particular, I became extremely agitated when Michael pulled the "voice change prank" on me. It was the first time he had ever done it. 

I called his cell phone and was caught by surprise when a deep, male voice answered the phone with, "Barry County Sheriff's Department." I became confused and glanced at phone to double-check the number I had dialed. It was Michael's phone number, so I said, "Hello, who is this?" Again, I heard, "Barry County Sheriff's Department." 

This was one of those rare times when I did not know what to say, so I asked, "Why the hell are you guys answering this phone?" The deep voice responded, "Because, we are screening this number for calls." I started asking for Michael's location because I began to think he was back in jail. After getting loud with the man on the phone, his voice instantly changed, and I heard Michael say, "Jen, it's OK! It's just me! I was just messing with you!"

Another time, Michael was house sitting for a friend for a few days. He called me from that house phone and pretended to be someone else. He had me going for awhile before he started laughing and his voice returned to the normal voice I was used to hearing from him.

Point is, without listing every single occurrence, Michael can change voices like no one I have ever heard before.

Michael played these pranks on people every so often, enough to keep us on our toes, but not enough for us to suspect him. I used to laugh when Jamie would tell her stories and how Michael always got the best of her. Either she was really dumb or he was really sly.

As it turns out, he was really sly. In earlier conversations between Michael and me, he denied things that he would later make contradictory comments about. This happened a few occasions. Some information I am just not comfortable sharing yet unless directed by the AG. 

Yes, there is ONE recorded section of a conversation between Michael and me. Yes, the AG has it. Yes, admission of the conversation has been made. The only people that have a copy of that conversation is the AG and me. I did not edit this conversation in any way before I gave it to the AG. 

Onto Susie's "death threats"...

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