Thursday, November 16, 2006


So I was going to whine for a few sentences (about shlepping TO the grocery store, and then BACK to the train station, then from my train station TO my apartment, blah, blah, blah), but I had some STFU juice and decided to not do that. I'm also not going to lament, a-fucking-gain!, that i was going to do some yoga when I got home but then I didn't. Whatever.

I AM going to complain about the catalogues, however. I tend to buy my clothing online, not least because I hate shopping. Reason number two is that women's clothes often don't fit me very well, so rummaging around in a space I hate (a mall or department store of some kind) trying to find something that I like and that fits me, well, no, thanks. I've managed to find some online retailers whose sizing I know pretty well (most notably L. L. Bean, except for shoes--I've never had good luck with any of their shoes) and I just stick with them. There were a few others from whom I used to buy clothes, but since I don't wear clothes much any more--other than chef clothes and jeans--I might leaf through the catalogue but that's about it.

My point--and, yes, i do have one--is that the only catalogues to which I gave my new address were Bean and Title 9. But every last catalogue I used to get has managed to find me already, which I suppose is a testament to some kind of efficiency, but which is also kind of annoying. It used to be that you'd get this six- to ten-month grace period until the catalogues (and charitable organizations) found you, and some might never find you unless you ordered from them again, but apparently they've become more efficient. Plus, this city does not really have recycling that actually works. Plus, unlike downtown, the building in which I now live does not have recycling, which means I'm throwing away aluminum, plastic, and glass, much to my dismay. If I had a vehicle (and more motivation), I might recycle on my own, but let's face it--I was going to whine about carrying groceries. At least I no longer read a newspaper, which dramatically reduces the amount of paper trash for which I'm responsible. Except for the catalogues.


Anonymous Dave said...

Em, c'mon, you should have asked ME about this. As a former B2B (that's industry-speak for "Business to Business") cataloger, I can tell you that these companies rent mailing lists from each other.

"Yes, I'd like to rent 100,000 names of women between XX and XX, who buy X, Y, and Z and tend to spend $XXX.XX every X months."

It's just another revenue stream for some companies. One clue is when a company misspells your name, and the same misspelling appears on the label of a catalog from a company you've never bought from.

The Direct Marketing Association out on Long Island, NY is sort of the "National Do Not Call Registry" of junk mail. Nearly all reputable mailers use their list of people who have requested not to receive junk mail as a drop list from any mailing they are planning, so the names come out during the merge/purge.

On that note.... I'll buy lunch for anyone who knows what a "nixie" is without having to Google it. The downside is, you have to dine with me.

9:58 PM  
Blogger kStyle said...

Dave, this is most helpful. I'm having similar catalogue woes, PLUS they seem to think I'm a. older and b. in a higher income bracket than I actually am, so I receive catalogues that are completely useless to me.

Question: is there a way to opt out of direct mail, while continuing to receive the one catalogue I want? I don't know what I'd do without Vermont Country Store.

8:12 AM  
Blogger kStyle said...

Looky-loo--I found the web page at DMA for opting out:

8:24 AM  
Anonymous Dave said...

kstyle, yes, the junk mailers do NOT want most people to know about the DMA. Glad you were able to find their web site... and I'm glad you have found it to be useful!

9:43 AM  

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