My high school apparently has contracted with some highly motivated bozos to produce an alumni directory. The bozos in question seem to be in the business of collecting information about alumni from high schools and the like, formatting it, slapping it in a book, selling it to alumni and others, and then returning some small portion of the profits back to the alumni foundation.

Well, I’m not in the business of just giving away information about me. If someone is motivated enough to try and find information about me by talking to family, friends, and relatives, there isn’t much I can do about that. If they want to get online, or use public records to glean information about me, there isn’t much I can do about that either. However, that does not mean that I’m going to take time out of my life to sit around and fill out on-line surveys and chat with telemarketers just because someone wants to know if I’m married, to whom, where I live, what I do, if I have kids, etc.

Anyway, the alumni organization from my high school apparently felt that all of us alumni were living lives that were too quiet and not nearly filled with enough grief. So, they unleased Bozos, Inc. upon us.

Today, Bozos, Inc. called my house for at least the fifth time in the last couple of months. After this last call, I wrote the following e-mail to the alumni foundation:

From: David BogenTo: kathy@arrowfoundation.orgSubject: Call Off Your DogsMs. Bierscheid:Other than being an alumni of Watertown's school system, it's notclear what I did to deserve the endless badgering that your foundationhas unleashed upon me.

I've been called no less than five times by an agency trying tocollect information about me for some sort of alumni directory.  Noless than five times, I have asked them to take me off their lists andnever call me again.  I fully expect to receive a sixth, a seventh,and an eighth call.

Postcard after postcard arrives in my mailbox, all of them asking forinformation about me to be included in an alumni directory.  Eachpostcard joins its brethren in my trash bin.

The operating theory seems to be that if alumni aren't immediatelycompliant with your demands for money or information, they should becalled and called and called again until they finally get so tired ofthe hassle that they cave in to your demands.  The reality of thematter is that the more your organization pesters me, the *less*likely I am to give you money, information, or even the time of day.

Shouldn't it be obvious at this point that if I haven't responded toyour numerous postcards and telephone calls, chances are reasonablygood that I probably won't?  Whose bright idea was it to endlesslypester alumni with direct mail and telemarketing like some sort ofdesperate credit card company?  What, exactly, do I have to do to getthe message across that I'd prefer to be left alone?

Sincerely,David Bogen

When I graduated from high school, I thought all I got was a diploma and a pat on the back. Now, I know that I got a diploma and lifetime supply of telemarketing calls and direct mail advertisements.