I was at my partner's last night and received a call. The stranger asked if I was Mr Smith*. I said no, but this was the Smith residence. He then asked if I was the husband of Mrs Smith. I replied "No, but I am her partner". He said "Boyfriend then?" and I said "Yes - what is this about?!".

First mistake - brass off the person receiving the call with inane questioning of his relationship.

He then rattled off some rubbish about GM foods, and how his group had basically single handedly organised for GM stickers to be stuck on food known to contain Genetically Modified products. He then asked me to join their little club and become one of the converted that goes around knocking on doors and spreading the "good word" about the evils of GM.

I told the guy he had come to the wrong person for that kind of rubbish as I am pro-GM. He didn't understand what this meant (I don't think he had considered the fact that some people might actually be for genetic modification) and asked for an explanation. I explained that I thought GM was a good idea, so he hung up.

If you are to phone around and try to enlist suckers into a wee club, follow these simple rules:

  1. Introduce yourself and your cause up-front before grilling the receiver on their relationship, sexual preference and favourite position.
  2. Expect the possibility that some people may be opposed to what you are shoving down their throat - your personal view is not the only possible view.
  3. When completing a call, thank the receiver for allowing you to waste their valuable time before hanging up - I have your name and organisation and if I had the time and inclination buddy, I'd bother to give you a call back and relate these facts to you in person.

* Name changed for privacy's sake

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