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EX-TELEMARKETER IRKED BY PESKY SALES CALLS, TOO

DEAR ABBY: As a former telephone salesperson (six years), I agree with you, Abby. Most people consider these calls an invasion of their privacy. Three out of four calls are likely to come at an inconvenient time for the person called - they are either sick, napping, outside cutting the grass, changing the baby or just walking out the door for an appointment.

The arguments against telephone sales far outnumber the arguments for. Someone living in a high-rise apartment building can be called by an aluminum siding salesperson. And a person who is in bed with two broken legs from a skiing accident can be called by someone selling dancing lessons!Keep right on campaigning against telemarketing, Abby. Anything that comes in the mail can be thrown away. Junk mail is what keeps the post office busy these days. So keep Uncle Sam's employees busy and let the home be the one place of privacy where nobody can intrude and bother you. Because I value my privacy, sign me . . . ANONYMOUS

DEAR ABBY: Count me among those who resent being solicited for business on my home telephone.

One day last week I received a telephone call from someone who was trying to sell me a carpet-cleaning service. I politely said, "I'm unable to talk to you right now. Will you please give me your home telephone number?"

His response: "I'm sorry, but I do not conduct business from my home."

I replied: "Well, neither do I. Have a nice day." - HAD ENOUGH IN CEDAR RAPIDS, IOWA

DEAR ABBY: In response to your column about telemarketing, I have a suggestion for your readers that may be helpful: Get an answering machine.

Then, to prevent missing important calls from friends, relatives, etc. use a message similar to the one we use at home: "Hello. If you are selling something or taking a survey, please hang up now. Otherwise, please leave your message at the sound of the beep."

It worked for us. - FIGHTING BACK IN ST. LOUIS

C) 1988 Universal Press Syndicate