For Sale??

I mentioned stupid people in last week’s blog post. They’re everywhere. And they’re making most of us miserable. You don’t agree? So…are you that one person in two million who likes telemarketers? No? Told you so.

Thank God for caller ID. Spectrum makes it simple because the number shows up on our TV screen. If it’s a robocall, it rings once then Spectrum shuts them down. Good thing, because if it’s a name we don’t recognize, we ain’t answering it. And that’s about 90% of all our calls. They’ve come up with new tricks, but they don’t work. Their latest thing is spoofing the area code, so we’ll think it’s one of our neighbors and answer. Nope. If it’s a neighbor, they’ll walk over or their name will show, so they’re not fooling anybody. Nor are they fooling us when the number that shows up is ours. Seriously, how stupid do they think we are?

If Spectrum doesn’t cut them off after the first ring, they sometimes stay on the line long enough for the answering machine to pick up. And they talk to the machine. Not leave a message, but say things like, “Are you there?” The other day, someone asked that question and then said, “I can’t understand you, so I’m putting you through to a representative.” Like I said, stupid. If they weren’t, they’d have known I was laughing at them for not being able to tell it was an answering machine and not someone anxiously awaiting their call.

Telemarketers aren’t the only irritating people on the planet. Scammers are right up there with them. Have you gotten one of those “click the link below” e-mails? You know, the one where it tells you to input your SSAN, home address, credit card number (with password,) what your grandmother died from, and shoe size. What’s amazing is that people still fall for it. Granted, they make the e-mail look official, but my credit card company knows me. All their messages start with my name, not “Dear Customer.” And they know proper English. Scammers don’t. Dead giveaway.

My latest irritant is from people who want to buy my house. FYI, we own three houses, all in a six-house cul-de-sac. We thought about buying one more, but, per Monopoly rules, we’d trade them in for a hotel, so nope. Hotels are too much trouble and we’re lazy. Before you start thinking we’re rolling in dough, we’re not. The houses were bought when they were cheap. Very cheap, and we live in the slums. That might be a slight exaggeration, but we don’t live in the Dominion, so we have simple houses. Our daughter lives in one, granddaughter in another, and the third is ours.

For the past year, I’ve been inundated with “Do you want to sell your house” or “I want to buy your house” postcards and letters. One letter came in from Pennsylvania the other day. Really? They don’t have houses in PA they can buy? Some of the letters have started getting a little “nasty.” Big bold print: We’ve been trying to get hold of you, but you won’t answer! Here’s a thought. I won’t answer because I’m not interested. Ever think of that?

At first, it started out with letters wanting to buy the granddaughter’s house. That didn’t work. So, they went to the daughter’s house. No dice. So, the letters started coming in for both of them. I’m talking almost a daily occurrence. Since I ignored them, their latest letter is to buy my house, in addition to the others. Really?

When I bought this house, it was 900 SF and it was just me and my cat. Then Bruce and I added on, then Ed and I added on, and well…now it’s about 2500 SF. We’ve spent a fortune on this house and finally have it exactly like I want. (Notice I said “I” and not “we.” As long as Ed has his office/ham radio room, he’s happy.) There isn’t enough money on the face of the earth to make us sell. Well…if I could trade it for a comparable house on 300 acres, I’d reconsider. But unless they can match the size of my closet and bathtub, it’ll never happen.

A home used to be a safety zone. People came over when we invited them or dropped in if they knew they could. Like next door neighbors. The Cleavers probably got the occasional vacuum cleaner salesmen, but basically, people used to leave everyone else alone. Nowadays, it seems like everyone is trying to invade our space and most of them fall into the same category as cockroaches, except we can’t smash ‘em with a hammer. As tempting as that is.

I suppose the upside to all the letters/cards wanting to buy our house is they’re keeping the post office in business, but I can’t quite wrap my head around the whole “I want your house” concept. How does it work? Do they go on the internet looking for people who own multiple properties and start writing letters? Seems to me that if someone didn’t want a house, they wouldn’t buy it in the first place. Following that train of thought, aren’t these people wasting a lot of time and money on something that will never work?

Our daily mailbox is filled with junk mail letters and/or catalogs. Mary, our postlady, probably has job security just from what we get. If you take our mail and multiply it by everyone in San Antonio, that’s a bunch of wasted money. Job security for post office employees, but a lot of money.

You know what I’d like to see? “Junk” mail asking if I’d like to know about God. You never see that. We do have the occasional visitor who wants to discuss salvation with us, but never a letter from somebody concerned about my soul. Plenty of letters from people concerned about my house situation, but none about my soul. Seems to me like the emphasis is on the wrong subject, isn’t it?

In some ways, it’s not “fashionable” to be a Christian nowadays. Too bad. A little advertising or solicitation for God would net better results than a telemarketer wanting to lower my credit card interest rates. If you carry a zero balance, that means nothing to you. A simple message about salvation does. So…spread the word. Just don’t do it via telemarketing, please.

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