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It's Late and the Phone Rings


There's something about late evening phone calls. There's an edge to them even before you pick up the phone. Why is someone phoning you this late? Has someone died? Has someone been hurt? Is someone in trouble?

We don't get many phone calls here even at a reasonable hour of the evening as we are Telephone Preference Service subscribers1 and to back that up we've got anonymous caller rejection. So we don't get cold called. Ever2.

So on Tuesday night when the phone rang at about ten past ten I feared the worst.

I didn't recognise the number but when I answered it the woman asked for me by name so when she said she apologised for phoning so late I accepted that, assuming someone had given her my number because she had a problem3.

But no. She was calling from CND. Something about a demo or something. So here we were after 10pm at night and she's drumming up support for an event. I'm afraid I was rather short with her once I realised she was effectively cold calling me, and so late in the evening. She apologised and hung up.

At this time of night it had to be an activist rather than CND staff so they were giving out my phone number to people. That's a breach of trust which I was angry about so I emailed CND and asked them to delete my details from their records and to mail me back to confirm they had done so.

Three days later and not a peep from them. No apology. Nothing.

I'm very disappointed. CND is the first political organisation I ever got involved with. I was a very active in Cambridge Peace Action back in 1979 while at King's and went on all the marches. I rejoined last year when HMG announced they were going to replace Trident.

Oh well, there's other campaigns4 to worry about.

  1. Something which does seem to work in the UK.
  2. OK, that's not strictly true, but I think we've had one call in the last couple of years.
  3. One of the joys of having being both a parish councillor and our village tree warden, and running the village web site is that you do end up being a "portal" for people with problems.
  4. This one for example.

Tags: national politics, spam Written 22/02/08

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