Sunday, February 1, 2009
As soon as the "Do Not Call" list came out, I signed up. "Finally," I thought. "I can enjoy a quiet evening without someone I don't know bugging me." Wrong. I forgot to read the fine print. Political groups and charities can still call. And they call. And call. And call. I have a short list of charities I support: the VFW, some medical charities, my schools, and about 3 others. That's it. I don't expect calls from them, since they get my money. But they're evil -- all of them! They sold my name to other "similar" organizations in exchange (presumably) for more names. Apparently, my name is in every database related to veterans, education, medicine, and the police. Yes, the police. A few years ago, I was in a charitable mood and when the Fraternal Order of Police called, I gave them some money. Big mistake. In the past month, every single day I've come home to a huge number of "missed calls" from "Unknown Number." About every two days, in the evening, while I'm relaxing, "Unknown Number" will catch me at home. I pick up, put on a neutral voice, and say "Hello." Nothing. They've used their stupid auto dialer to call me, and then no one is available to talk. Ugh. I'm being rejected by people I don't want to talk to anyway!! Every few calls, I'll actually get a live person on the line, who invariably addresses me as "Misses." I'm a "Miss." Or even a "Miz" if you prefer. Like I need a stranger to taunt me with my single status.... But I digress. So Mr. "Unknown Number" gets on the line and introduces himself, and tells me he's with some police-related organization. Not the Fraternal Order of Police (they did reach me once, and I made them take me off their list), but some other organization I've never heard of, but which has "Police" or "Law Enforcement" in the name. Grrrr. I've started keeping a list, because some of them aren't honoring their agreement to take me off their call list. I wonder what happens if you sue the police for harassment? So far, I'm up to eight different organizations, none of which I have ever supported (nor will I ever, because they're bugging me). I know times are hard because of the recession, and fewer people are giving to charities. I know the guy on the other end of the line is just doing his job. But I'm not interested. In fact, I'm so not interested, that I'm no longer going to give to ANY charities that don't have an up-front opt-out policy for name sharing. Unless, of course, they're offering a me a "Get Out of Speeding Ticket Free" card.