Telemarketers are a pesky kind of people. To many the profession ranks close to a Jehova witness or a paparazzi. Since I am not belonging to either the rich or famous the last group is not interested in me. Good thing, a life that is permanently in the spotlight is not for me. I like to sit naked on my balcony with a beer in between sauna sessions. You might think me an exhibitionist, but fact of the matter is that no one can see me without going through great efforts! You must be either a paparazzi or a pervert to go that far (Probably both). But, nobody is watching and even if they did, they would not care. Blissful anonymity! Nevertheless, in Britain they would immediately call the police. Send a psych and screw me up like in a clockwork orange setting. No I am happy, living in Finnish suburbia.

Jehova witnesses never seem to come here. To far, to walk? Written off neighborhood? I don't know. Fact is I never see them, which is fine to me. Also others who have monopoly to the ultimate truth never seem to think it belongs here. They must think that all who live in Vierema have all hope abandoned.

telemarketer2Back to the telemarketers. My innocent colleague often has them on the phone. He is polite. He answers their questions, because that's the intro. It always begins with a survey, after that they come to the heart of the matter. Would you like a subscription to such-and-such magazine? Hmm, hmmm, nayy. We have this offer, you know? OK! Fall for it a couple of times and you are on hit list. They never go away. Of course I understand them. Telemarketers have a lousy job. You get lousy paid for your efforts, and only a decent bonus when you score a customer. The only advantage is that you can do it at home (Yes, mobile is possible, but you have to keep a log about customer responses. That's not so easy when traveling). Sometimes call centers are in India, but the number of Indians that speak Finnish is so low that companies have ditched that idea. No most telemarketing calls in Finland are made by Finnish native speakers. They immediately run into snag when they call me. Hello, Jos Helmich speaking. Clack!!! The shortest conversation ever. Some have the decency to ask “Puhutko Suomea?”, but when I say something English back it is quickly goodbye. Apparently it is not the creme-de-la-creme of society that is hired for jobs like this. Telemarketer experiences are a running joke among the immigrant community in Finland. I often advise my colleague to speak English if he does not recognize the number. I think it would help, but he is polite. Maybe they are offering socks. He needs some new ones soon.