Wednesday, January 23, 2013

YOU WILL LOVE TRAINS

The Conway Scenic Railroad
So some of you may know of my colorful history with a certain Railroading Enthusiast magazine.*

If you're not familiar with my history with Railroading Enthusiast magazine*, here's a brief recap: They've been stalking me since 2009.

Apparently, they really want me to love trains. And no matter how many times I request it, and how many times they claim they've done it, they just won't take me off their mailing list. They're like some kind of maniacal Avon lady determined to make quota.

And I can't scare them off with  my abnormally large German shepherd.

Yesterday marked the beginning of the latest "You've Got To Be Kidding Me!" mail cycle. So in honor of this event, I am re-posting the following letter (first posted in 2009):

Dear Railroading Enthusiast Magazine**,

Please, please, PLEASE, stop sending me renewal notices telling me that my subscription is in danger of running out. I do not care if my subscription is in danger of running out. Mostly because I DO NOT HAVE—nor never have hada subscription to your magazine. This, I realize, has not seemed to discourage you from sending me your magazine on a regular basis.

I thought this would have been taken care of last November when I first received a subscription renewal notice. The November issue would be my last, you threatened, if I did not send in payment. I did not send in payment and yet—and yet!—another issue appeared in my mail the following month. And the month after that and the month after that.

I do not want your magazine. No offense. I think trains are nice. I think trains are swell. I wave to the weirdos on the Conway Scenic Railroad when they wave to me and I'm stuck waiting for them to pass. I even took a train to New York City once. It was fun.

But I am not a railroading enthusiast so I do not want your magazine. To answer the questions in your leaflet, I do not savor the glory days of steam railroading. I am not a die-hard fan of early diesels (but I am a fan of Die Hard). I am not interested in reading thrilling tales from real railroaders. Nor am I interested in the exciting pamphlet concerning great train stations.

Also, I do not want the special commemorative coin commemorating your magazine. Nor do I want the classic trains DVD series or the special commemorative coin commemorating the classic trains DVD series. I do not want the classic model trains magazine nor the classic model trains catalog. And if there's a special coin commemorating either the model trains or the catalog, I don't want that either.

I'm sure somewhere out there is a railroading enthusiast who would be genuinely enthusiastic about all of these things. It's just not me. It never has been me and never will be me.

So please stop the insanity. You're getting to be as bad as another magazine that shall remain nameless. They awarded me with a one year subscription back in 1994 that didn't run out for ten years. I do not want your magazine for the next ten years. I don't even want it for the next ten months or weeks or days. One issue was a fluke, the second was funny and now you're just stalking me.

Please stop it.

Yours Truly,

Me.

*— Not its real name.
**— Still not its real name. And, as far as I know, not the name of any magazine anywhere. But if there is a Railroading Enthusiast magazine out there and someone from that magazine is now reading this post and scratching your head wondering what the hell is going on, rest assured that I'm not talking about you. But please don't take that as an invitation to start sending me stuff, 'kay?

 

46 comments:

  1. I'm laughing so hard right now! Too funny! If this has really happened, what a bunch of morons.

    Hugs and chocolate,
    Shelly

    ReplyDelete
  2. Ha! I find this hilarious, mostly because I live in a household full of train enthusiasts. Not even kidding. They'd eat that stuff up. BUT I hate junk mail like that. And e-mail spam that won't take you off their list is the worst. I don't even know how I get on their subscriber list sometimes. I've never been to Branson, MO, nor have I ever had the desire to, but they are determined I MUST go. It seems I will have the time of my life there.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I got on the list because I subscribe to another of the company's publications. A writing magazine, something I actually view with enthusiasm. But they love to insist that I actually requested the railroad magazine to begin with. I did not.

      Haven't gotten the Branson, MO stuff. Guess the railroad people have dibs on me.

      Delete
  3. LOL, you are awesome!

    I am actually in the middle of a similar cycle with a parcel that keeps showing up at my house. In spite of returning the damn thing to the post office and telling them the person the parcel is for does not live at our address, they continue to stick it back in the post box and re-deliver it!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I had that happen last summer with someone's wedding invitation. It kept ending up in my box and I kept giving it back saying, "Yeah, she still doesn't live here." I stopped receiving it so I hope it got where it was supposed to go.

      Delete
  4. Whoever reads mail at that magazine, this must've made their day. I know it made mine. And now I must go watch "Die Hard."

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm pretty sure it made them cranky. I know it's hard to convey emotion in emails but... yeah, she was cranky.

      Delete
    2. You mean they wrote back? Any resolution to it besides the crankiness?

      Delete
    3. Yes, they told me they'd take me off the mailing list. But they never did say which one...

      Delete
  5. Replies
    1. It is. Funny and sad. But mostly funny.

      Delete
  6. My family is into trains, too. My father and younger brother have sets. My grandfather was a railroad man. I guess they're desperate for your attention?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. So it would seem. I guess they're trying to tap into the competitive not-a-fan-of-trains market.

      Delete
  7. What if you demanded your money back claiming dissatisfaction?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The leaflet does claim that if I decide this publication isn't for me for any reason (i.e. I'm not a fan of trains) I can cancel at any time. But they don't seem to include non paying non subscribers in this.

      Delete
  8. LOL, sorry to laugh, but the situation is funny and your response hilarious.

    I haven't been here in awhile. I need to remedy that. I guess I just did.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You're meant to laugh. That's the whole point of me posting this here.

      Delete
    2. Good thing, because your replies are just as funny. 'Witness protection program' indeed.

      Delete
  9. That was hilarious!!!
    You realize you will be hearing from them for the rest of your life now, don't you?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Is there some kind of witness protection program for people trying to get away from relentless magazine subscription departments?

      Delete
  10. Very funny. It's a shame it's not a magazines you enjoy reading - a writing magazine would be quite good.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I know. I never get stalked by the magazines that I actually want to read.

      Delete
  11. LOL! I know what you mean. Even if you do sign up for a year's subscription of a magazine, then they are always sending renewal reminders, even if you don't want to renew.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That's the problem I had with a certain music magazine which gathers no moss. It took a long while but I finally got them to leave me alone. The train people are apparently more determined.

      Delete
  12. It would be hilarious if it wasn't so frustrating.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think I've passed frustrated. I'm more in a shake my head and sigh state of being. At the very least, it gave me something funny to blog about.

      Delete
  13. They'll assume eventually you will admit your undying love for trains and pay them money, if only to get them to stop.

    You may need a new identity to get away from them.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That's a good point. If I actually pay for a subscription, I'll probably never hear from them again.

      Delete
  14. I needed a good laugh.

    If only my knitting magazines had that sort of stamina. But no. They stop coming if I don't pay to renew.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Same with my Entertainment Weekly subscription.

      Delete
  15. For some reason I've been getting a slew of baby magazines, coupons and trial products for I don't even know how many years. I kept wondering if the universe was trying to give me some sort of sign that I should reproduce.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Fortunately, the universe has never given me that particular sign. That would be a disaster.

      Delete
  16. Oh my gosh... I am laaaaaughing SO HARD right now...

    Made my night...

    Still laughing...

    ReplyDelete
  17. If that doesn't get the message to them their a lost cause and you should mail every one of the magazines back, one by one, over the next ten years so they can know how it feels to be stalked...oh, you could also stick a picture of Sauron's eye on them, with the words, "I see you!" Just to freak them out.

    My mum is a fan of Die Hard too. I think it is the chap with the big arms...or maybe I am thinking of Rambo.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh. My. God. I love that idea. I can mail back the magazines and the renewal notices and every other bit of junk mail they send to me with a note saying "Thanks for taking me off your mailing list!"

      Bruce Willis has pretty big arms in Die Hard but not as big as Sylvester Stallone's in Rambo.

      Delete
  18. cant believe they keep sending them, maybe its the other mj again, and she's not getting her trains!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That's true. I did not think of that. I'll have to check with her.

      Delete
  19. Maybe they have you confused with Sheldon Cooper. He loves trains.

    ReplyDelete
  20. I hate to tell you this, but for years I've loved that you get this magazine in the way in which you get it. Which might not make sense to anyone else, but it does to me. (My evil streak has taken over temporarily.)

    All the different scenarios of how and why you keep getting it can occupy my brain in gleeful evil giddiness for hours. Is it a disgruntled neighbor? Some bored postal worker? A customer service lackey with a twisted sense of justice? The portent of a hostile computer takeover that begins with a glitch at said magazine that turns malevolent? Or is it coming from inside the house?

    So, my evil streak thanks you for your suffering. (It's a polite evil streak if nothing else.)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's funny you mention the hostile computer takeover because just the other day, I wondered if Skynet was responsible.

      But that disgruntled neighbor thing... that's a possibility but how would I ever narrow down the suspects?

      Oh and a polite evil streak? I love it. Where can I get one?

      Delete
  21. Something like this happened to me once, only it was, like, two dozen magazines. I'm fairly convinced that a kid in our previous apartment complex signed me up for them when she was selling magazines for her school. I never paid for any of them, and some of them would just not stop sending issues.

    ReplyDelete