Dear Abby: I went to an optometrist recently and had my eyes checked. I also bought some contact lenses from him. Upon leaving the office, I asked the receptionist for my prescription. She said that she'd give it to me in two weeks when I returned for the follow-up checkup.

I was out of town on business and did not make the appointment. Worse, I lost the bag containing the new contact lenses. When I returned, I called the optometrist. The receptionist told me that she could not give me the prescription over the phone. We later had a conference call, but I never did get my prescription!A few days later, I went to the same optometrist and the receptionist handed me my prescription, which I took to a new optometrist, who informed me that the prescription was for eyeglasses and not contact lenses!

I called the first optometrist to tell him about it and the receptionist put me on hold forever, saying that she'd "ask the doctor." Then she came back and asked if there was any way I could buy another pair of contact lenses from them. I told her, "No, I didn't like your service." This time she put me on hold for so long that I finally hung up.

Abby, how can I obtain my prescription? My theory is that this greedy optometrist won't give it to me because he wants me to buy the lenses from him. Please help me fight back.

- Prescription Denied

Dear Denied: Demand your prescription! According to my optometrist, the records belong to you. Tell this to the receptionist if you cannot get in to see the optometrist immediately or appear to be getting the runaround. And it wouldn't hurt to mention that you will have your lawyer handle this if they give you any trouble.

Dear Abby: This is in response to the writer who complained of solicitors knocking on her door - especially at dinnertime. Many announced that they were not selling anything - they were there to "share" their religious faith, and were required to make door-to-door visitations.

I used to just close the door in their faces, hoping to dissuade them with a curt, "No, thank you; I already have a religion."

After I had my first baby, even taking time to answer the door became irksome, so I had a "NO SOLICITING" sign posted on my door, but these people insisted that they were not "soliciting" - they were witnessing the word of the Lord, and could I please give them some money for their magazine?

The solution: I simply took an oversized index card and wrote in large black letters: "NO SOLICITING, NO WITNESSING, NO KIDDING!" Since posting that sign, I have not had one person come to my door to sell me his "old-time" religion.

- Jane N. Poole, Rohnert Park, Calif.

Dear Jane: If for some reason your sign is overlooked, try the following sign suggested by one of my clever readers: "Warning, I am mean and my dog is hungry." Or, an even stronger warning might read: "Beware of our two Rottweilers!"

Abby shares more of her favorite, easy-to-prepare recipes. To order, send a business-size, self-addressed envelope, plus check or money order for $3.95 ($4.50 in Canada) to: Dear Abby, More Favorite Recipes, P.O. Box 447, Mount Morris, IL 61054. (Postage is included.)

1993 Universal Press Syndicate