Dear Crabby, How Do I Tell Telemarketers to Take a Hike?

Dear Crabby,

The other night I was sitting down to a nice meal with my family and the phone rang. Normally we let the machine get it, but I was expecting an important call, so I answered it. Of course, it turned out to be a telemarketer. Any suggestions on how I can get them to buzz off?

Thanks, Ned Annoyed

Dear Mr. Annoyed,

Sure – don’t ever answer your phone – ha! Seriously, I know exactly what you’re saying. You’d think in our age of fancy-schmancy technology there wouldn’t be a need to bug us hardworking people on the phone. After all, isn’t that what DearCrabbyhaving an email address is for? Just fill my inbox up and I’ll choose what I want to read or even keep. If you do happen to find yourself on the receiving end of one of these ill-timed calls, here are a few of my favorite methods: 1. Pretend you don’t understand. Honestly, sometimes this isn’t too hard because the accent of the person on the other end of the phone is so think, you’d need a butter knife to cut through it. 2. Ask them to wait a minute and then gently hang the phone up and walk away. 3. This is my personal favorite – tell them the person they’ve called for is dead and thank them for reminding you of this painful fact. That will guarantee they get off the phone faster than you! Oh, yes. If you don’t already have caller ID, I would consider getting it as we head into next year’s elections. I consider the people who call for both parties equally annoying as any telemarketer. I have been voting longer than most of them have been alive and one measly phone call from them is not going to change my opinion! If none of my personal top three suggestions work, you can always contact the Do Not Call Registry to get your name taken off these blasted telemarketers list. And you can also file a complaint if they persist.

Hope this helps and that you’re able to enjoy many quiet evenings in your future.

Thanks, Dear Crabby

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About Dear Crabby

Stuck in a rut? Need some biased advice from a crabby old baby-boomer? Read regularly by thousands and loved by some, Dear Crabby answers questions weekly to life's challenges. Send him a note at

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