A couple times every workday, I get calls from telemarketers.

But the encounters are usually cordial, and always quick — I kick ’em off the phone before they finish their pitches. Early this month, however, a telemarketer caught me on a bad day. Then, he caught me off guard.

“Good morning!” he said. “How’s the new year treatin’ ya?”

“Not that great.,” I said, frankly. “But thanks for asking.”

“Well,” he said, and paused thoughtfully. “Remember — it’s just the start,” he said. “Give it time.”

Wise guy (sincerely).