Incredibly, in the midst of all the work I'm doing trying to contact disabled veteran contractors to give the Company a bid on an upcoming project, I got a call from a phone solicitor, trying to get me to donate to a disabled veterans group. He started at $49 and worked his way down, $10 at a time.
At first, I politely said no. I give generous donations, considering my meager salary, to organizations of my choice. I have nothing against disabled veterans, but I don't pledge money over the phone. I was very polite at $49, $39 and $29. When it got to $19, I was a little more insistent.
Then he threw me a curve. He asked for a $14 donation. I wasn't expecting a figure that didn't end in a 9, and I almost said yes. But he didn't seem to understand my subtlety. "I'm sorry, I just can't do anything at this time." That's a clear invitation for him to keep asking me for money, apparently.
Once he started saying things like, "The disabled veterans said yes when your country needed them, and I'm sure they can count on you to say yes to them," I was determined that I was never going to say yes to this guy. I got louder and a bit strident. And clearer. "No" is pretty clear, I thought.
"I'm sure your disabled veterans can count on you to donate ten dollars."
What the --? "No!"
"For your disabled veterans?"
"Well, God bless you…" Click! I think I might have even said a bad word, before I found the disconnect button on the cordless handset. I never hang up on anyone, but I guess even my good breeding and compassion have a breaking point. That doesn't mean he won't call back and try again, though.