17 October 2009

Just Say Never

They interrupt your dinner, they call just as you’re rushing out the door, they invade the private fun time with your significant other, they suck up your cell phone minutes, they leave incomprehensible messages on your answering machine, a computer calls and there’s nobody there. Everybody has a horror story or two. They are telemarketers.

I personally hate telemarketers. But then, so does everybody else in the world. Or so it would seem. I’ve never heard anybody claim to like telemarketers. I’ve never heard anybody admit to buying anything from them. But still they call and call and call until you want to scream.

Okay, I’ll admit it. One time MANY years ago I bought something from a telemarketer. My daughters were young, and a guy offered me a great deal on books for them. Books. My weakness. Turns out he rather exaggerated the deal I could get. I learned my lesson. Never did it again. I refuse to even talk to telemarketers. I tell them I have a policy of not buying from telemarketers. I’m nice, but I frequently hang up on them still doing their spiel. These folks are determined.

There are other issues too. What if it’s not a real telemarketer? What if the guy on the other end is only offering you a too-good-too-be-true deal in an effort to steal your credit card number? Could happen. Yeah, I’m paranoid. It pays to be in this crazy world we’ve built for ourselves.

What’s the answer? It’s simple, really. If nobody ever bought anything from telemarketers they’d soon go the way of the dinosaur—except nobody would dig up their bones and put them in museums. The thing is, somebody is buying from these people. If not, then it wouldn’t be financially feasible for them to keep calling. And keep calling. And keep…

So, logic demands that somebody is buying telemarketing wares. Is it you? How about you over there? Okay, I see you trying to sneak out the back. Somebody, actually a lot of somebodies, are aiding and abetting these annoying folks.

I’d like to say something here. This annoyance is not the fault of those who call (except maybe for the computer, we all know you can’t trust those things). It does no good to yell at—or worse—someone who is simply struggling to make a living. Yes, I’ve yelled, and I feel bad about it. Telemarketing is not a job I’d pick, but it might be the best, or only, choice for many people.
Actually, that’s the only good thing to be said for telemarketing companies, they do offer jobs, and in this economy that is definitely a good thing.

As long as they don’t call me.
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