How To Say No To Charities

Trent at The Simple Dollar blog has a post about how to say no, especially to charitable requests. One of his readers describes the problem:

I am a sucker for girl scouts selling cookies. I am a sucker for salesman at stores. I am a sucker for my church when they need money for something. I am a sucker for friends and family who need to borrow money. I am a sucker for the Green Party or Green Peace when they call and ask for money all the time. I have heard it called “The Disease to Please” before and I just wanted you to know how much it affects me not only with a lot of stress and anxiety, but also financially.

The solution, advises Trent, is to pre-plan your charitable giving—then if someone isn’t on your list, you can truthfully say it’s beyond your control. And then slam the door on them.

He points out that while it may be hard for you to say no to people and organizations you agree with, if you pre-plan as he advises, then you have a very compelling reason to turn down the next request that wasn’t on your list.

It takes practice, especially for tenderhearted people who aim to please, but by not saying no, you’re actually taking money out of the hands of the things you really care about. Saying yes to the salesman in the store means that you now have less money to spend on stuff you actually need – or on charities you actually care about. Saying yes to the person knocking on your door means you have less money to give to the people you actually care about who need it.

Every time you say “yes” outside of your plan, you let down something you care about even more. Once you really learn that, “no” becomes a much easier thing to say.

“The Sucker Factor: The Cost of Being Unable to Say No – And How to Get Out of It” [The Simple Dollar]
(Photo: Getty Images)


Edit Your Comment

  1. Kajj says:

    What on earth was that photo taken for in the first place? Is there a big demand for stock photos illustrating “Sucks to be you, kid!”?

    I think planning your charitable giving is a great idea. When you decide to give more to a few places instead of a little bit to everybody, you have a better chance of actually seeing the difference your money made, which is really rewarding. But then, so are Thin Mints.

  2. MissTic says:

    that photo brings an old Eddie Murphy skit to mind….

  3. Ryfael says:

    I ♥ that photo, reminds me of my mom and me. Also kind of hate it in a way.

  4. RandoX says:

    I hate being asked for a contribution every time I buy something. Would you like to donate $2 to this, $1 to that…

    Yesterday the donation request was for the SPCA when I bought something at PetSmart. I told the clerk that I support the Humane Society every time I feed my dog I adopted from one of their shelters.

  5. I just slap my pants and say Sorry. When I was in dire straights, I remember who helped me out.

  6. lesbiansayswhat says:

    Buying Girl Scout cookies..I always viewed it as supporting the little girls in my family to do things in their local’s a bit of a stretch to call it charity.

  7. johnva says:

    What annoys me the most is how so many charities sell my name to other similar charities when I donate. For example, I give to some environmental organizations that I care about. But I feel in doing so I’m harming the environment more than I’m helping, since giving to any of them triggers a tidal wave of bulky junk mail. And yes, I’m always careful to check the boxes saying not to sell my information if they actually ask me.

    • @johnva: I give to some environmental organizations that I care about. But I feel in doing so I’m harming the environment more than I’m helping

      I’ve been thinking about this but in a different way and related specifically to carbon emissions. Let’s say a carbon cap/trade bill is passed. Is it environmentally smart to pay *extra* for renewable energy from your energy company?

      Unless you purchasing renewable energy results in an actual increase in its use, you are just subsidizing the extra cost for everyone else. You are not reducing emissions but just paying for everyone else.

      It would be wiser to buy up carbon credits and just let them expire so they go unused, which provides some assurance that emissions were actually prevented.

      This logic does not apply until emissions are regulated, so continue buying away for now.

  8. My daughter’s been selling Girl Scout cookies for about 3 years. Not everyone buys. It happens. We have neighbors who simply offer a “No Thanks.” That’s all that’s really needed. Don’t feel the need to concoct a long story. A simple “No thank.” should take care of it.

  9. Diet-Orange-Soda says:

    I’m the same way. I try to be nice and pull out a few bucks. But where we live now, it happens *way* too often. Now, I just tell them to leave some pamphlet with me and I’ll decide later. They may not like it and I probably won’t ever look at the information but I can’t be giving $10 or $20 to every John and Jane that knocks on my door.

  10. ChipMcDougal says:

    After the stuff I’ve read on this site, I have a much easier time saying no…

  11. samurailynn says:

    I just don’t like it when people approach me and ask for money (charities or sales), so it’s really easy for me to say no to them. If they try to bother me about it after I say no, I just tell them that they are now guaranteeing that I will never do business with or donate to their organization.

  12. BuddyGuyMontag says:

    That picture reminds me of the meme picture of two kids with the redheaded girl holding the fish and the little boy just staring DEATH at her.

  13. snoop-blog says:

    I prefer to contribute goods. I will give canned foods and such to the homeless shelter, furniture or home items for families who live in my area and have a house burn down or something. Money, is not a donation. I’ve worked for about 10-12 charities and I found out the charities were giving less than %15 of money collected to the actual cause. That’s when I realized the best way to help somebody out is to do it on a more personal level- and I actually felt like I was really helping.

    btw- Half of those charities I worked for was the actual charity itself, not a telemarketing service. Although it was the same thing as a telemarketing service. Places are getting smarter and my telemarketing company started its only charities so they wouldn’t be effected by the do not call list. What’s sad is that it’s %100 legit.

    But even places like United Way and Red Cross, pay rediculous salaries to their higher ups.

    I’ve always told myself if I was going to hand over money as a charitable gift, I know plenty of people in my own family who need it badly, and I know that my money will go directly to helping them out.

  14. I used to be like that. A couple of years ago, I put my foot down, and haven’t looked back. It doesn’t stop the junk mail, and the cold calls, though.

    It’s a matter of priorities. I contribute something like $7K a year to my son’s college tuition, books, and fees. Since he’s over 18, I consider that my tithe. Anyone else who wants money from me will have to convince me they need it more than he does, and that’s a hard sell.

  15. Juggernaut says:

    “You got no ice cream. You got no ice cream. Cause you on welfare.”

    + Watch video

  16. Nytmare says:

    @RandoX: Hey, I wonder what they’d say if you answered “No, thanks. May I have $1 off my bill today?”

  17. shmompa says:

    I have to say my biggest pet peeve is co-workers hawking cookies, chocolates, wrapping paper, or other various goods for their kids…

    for me it’s not so hard to say no to a stranger or store clerk but when I am constantly being solicited in my office its just an uncomfortable situation! I mean I go to work to make money not give it to my coworkers various causes… and don’t even get me started on “what if I give to one person … then do I have to give to everyone because that adds up… and frankly girl scout cookies may be good but no one needs to buy 20 boxes… so which colleague gets my business?

    I swear no selling of charity goods in the office!

  18. startertan says:

    I’ve only given to 3 organizations:

    1 – MD Food Bank, because I feel bad that I’m a fat ass and people are starving

    2 – Local Volunteer Fire Company, if my house burns up I hope they’ll get there faster

    3 – Salvation Army, old clothes and stuff, because I’m a fat ass (see #1)

  19. RBecho says:

    Here is another approach. Pick a charitable organization or two or three and donate to them exclusively. When some other group comes along say that you currently donate to the following orgs (name them here) and that you will consider there offer and get back to them.

    Not only does it defers your saying no, as you can still acknowledge you do give (and get over the bad feelings of saying no), but if you do want to later chose to give to this new org, you can, either add it to your list, or shift around your list.

    The hard part is naturally to keep that list to something you can manage as part of your budget. But at the very least it’s budgeted, and not impulsed.

  20. Erskine says:

    @Juggernaut: Hell yeah!

  21. snoop-blog says:

    @shmompa: I do a first come first serve on my girl scout cookie purchases. The early bird most definatly gets the worm- and I make that clear to all my co-workers who ask after the first guy. Sorry I know you as a friend, but bought off of somebody else. I like cookies, they were there, you were not.

    My biggest pet peeve on this subject is that every single store you go to now try to get a dollar for this, a dollar for that. Quit trying to get all the middle class/ lower class to pony up a dollar, and start hitting the upper class up for thousands. What’s sad is that it usually is people that don’t have anything to give that give. They (unlike the rich) actually know what it’s like to not have shit.

  22. MisterE says:

    Nancy Reagan had a saying back in the 80’s:

    “Just say NO!”

    It works.

  23. snoop-blog says:

    Oooh I forgot, also rich people will only donate to a %100 tax deductable charity. It’s not even about donating as much as it is a tax break.

    And one of the places I worked for only gave %18 of the proceeds to the charity, but yet it was still %100 tax deductable.

  24. LordieLordie says:

    I have a budgeted amount for charities for every quarter, and I NEVER give to people knocking on my door, nor calling on the phone. I only give to charities directly, using their websites (not to fund raising companies, who typically keep a significant portion for themselves), and only to charities I care about.

  25. Coelacanth says:

    @RBecho: That’s a very effective strategy. It also gets the salesperson to back off quickly, especially if they’re in the same type of charity.

    It was one way to survive at Berkeley…

  26. SadSam says:

    This is what we do.

    We have 4 favorite charities that get the big bucks from us (we include giving in our yearly budget) and then we add about $100 to the yearly budget total for misc. charity requests (i.e. girl scout cookies sold by our neighborhood girls). We only give to known charities that we have a relationship with and we only buy cookies, etc. from kiddos that we know and care about.

  27. Starfury says:

    I don’t have a problem saying NO to everyone that asks/begs for money. I have to take care of myself and my family first and if there is any extra money it gets saved.

  28. othium says:


    I very much agree with this comment. Co-workers selling things for their kids/church/whatever is a big no-no in my book. It gets even worse when the company itself asks for donations of vacation hours for someone who has been injured in an accident or on leave from childbirth. I can understand an accident – but pregnancy doesn’t make the grade for me. My boss almost made it sound as if the donation was mandatory and looked surprised and angry when I told her I preferred not to partake in this one. This led to some nasty office gossip going around about me, but luckily there were plenty of others who resented the practice of pressured donations at work and the hubub quieted down when it appeared that those making a fuss were now in the minority.

  29. flipx says:

    Salvation Army, the special care nursery at our local hospital and the War veterans. The rest NO.. try saying it NO it is even faster than saying yes and you don’t have to stop to hand over money. Say it NO NO NO what ticks me off is how much of the money goes to administrative, new desks, chairs, paintings, carpets, guess that some of them have never heard of recycling.

  30. SacraBos says:

    We generally donate to the Shriners. My wife’s son got treated at Scottish Rite for some problems when an infant. She likes to give back when she can, since they really helped with her son.

    And my daughter is a Girl Scout, so we always get some cookies. I don’t consider GS cookies a “charity” as such, since you are getting a product back for your money. But the kid should do the selling, not mom and dad doing all the work at the office.

    @LordieLordie: I generally agree. We do get calls from places like the Leukemia Society looking for old clothing and such, so we give away unused items. No cash, though.

  31. velvetjones says:

    For the door to door/phone people, I tell them I never make contributions that way and they can ask for my dollars in WRITING, I would happily give and would apply for a match with company’s matching program etc. For everyone else, I tell them that I either have brand new [insert whatever they’re selling] or I just gave to [charity] already. They can’t argue with you.

  32. MattMcKindling says:

    I have a pretty big budget for charities and churches, but ONLY because I budget everything else too. The advice in this section is wise. Manage your expenses so you can manage your giving. The consumerist recently posted a link to

    If you aren’t organized yet, use your new mint account to get started!

  33. @SacraBos: “But the kid should do the selling, not mom and dad doing all the work at the office.”

    Not too many people like the idea of their precious little (female) snowflake interacting with the adult public unsupervised. Parents bringing a order sheet to work is expedient and safer, and you still don’t have to buy the damn cookies if you don’t want to.

  34. MercuryPDX says:

    Knowing how crappy the funding is for after school programs at my local schools, I will gladly purchase anything consumable from a school kid to benefit Cheerleading, Baseball, the Music Program, etc.

    @Steaming Pile: While I agree with your statement, nothing upsets me more than when an 8-year old child comes to my door to sell me something w/o a parent in sight.

  35. MissPeacock says:

    I find that people who stand in intersections with buckets soliciting donations are the most obnoxious. What? I’m supposed to give money to you because you have a bucket in your hand?? Why don’t you wash my car or do something useful with yourself? And how am I supposed to know you represent the charity you say you do? My hometown’s high school sports teams do this ALL THE TIME.

  36. MissPeacock says:

    @MercuryPDX: Oh, jeez. One evening this girl (about 12) came to my door selling magazines without a parent in sight. I said no thanks, then she leaned in and told me she thought she had gotten her period and would I let her use my bathroom. I know I’m an under-30 single woman, but I could have been a raving lunatic! I let her in, she used my bathroom, left a dirty tampon in my toilet (which she didn’t flush), and then glowered at me when I refused her second attempt to sell me a magazine. But the thing that bothered me more than anything was that someone let their 12-year old girl roam around unsupervised in the apartment complex.

  37. MyCokesBiggerThanYours says:

    I’ll tell you how to say no. Follow this script, “…Not interested. *click*.”

    THe alternate version for those companies you don’t want calling back, “…Not interested. Put me on your do-not-call list. *click*.”

  38. snoop-blog says:

    I think some of us on here are confusing fundraisers for charities. Girl scout cookies was a fundraiser I thought. I can totally see how donating to the shriners, or childrens hospital would be worth it.

    BTW- Those state police stickers DO NOT- I repeat- DO NOT help you. If you think the reason you didn’t get a ticket was because he saw your sticker- your kidding yourself. He wouldn’t have gave you a ticket anyway. I know because I used to work in the telemarketing office that gave those out for a donation. The cops get like %18 of the PROFIT we collect and it goes towards buying teddy bears to calm down kids who’s parents are gone (car accident, cps, lost kids, etc). Not really much of a charity I know, but I was amazed at how many people swore that the sticker was the reason they didn’t get a ticket.

  39. davidc says:

    Our telemarketing calls from charities have recently dwindled down to almost nothing.

    We tried telling them we were on the Do Not Call list for a reason, but that didn’t stop them.

    Finally we started to tell every telemarketer: “We don’t give anything to any organization that calls us, please take us off your list.”

    That is finally starting to work. The reality is that a lot of these charities “rent” phone bank time from private companies so it’s the same person / company calling you even though they are representing different charities.

  40. edosan says:

    How to say no to charities?

    Like this: “no.” The more you say it, the easier it is.

    Like others have said, we pick who we donate to carefully based on our values and how wisely the spend the money (so we’re not subsidizing the charity’s nice headquarters for instance).

    People that call or knock on the door are told we don’t give money to people that call or knock on the door. (Sorry, I don’t want to buy magazines to send you to your youth whatever. I saw Office Space, thank you very much.)

    Stuff that comes in the mail goes in the recycling bin.

    I used to feel a little guilty about the grocery store donation thing when it was occasional…when I started getting hit up for something every time I went to the store, I became less sympathetic.

    We buy Girl Scout cookies from the booth at the grocery store early so for the rest of the season we can say “sorry, we already ordered some…”

    When I plan my charitable donations this way, I get to put more money into a really important charity: the “what if something happens to us” fund.

  41. Japheaux says:

    I got hit up at a Walgreen’s the other day for a donation to the American Cancer Society. I had just given a rather good-sized sum to the ACS and completed the all-night Walk for Life in my hometown….but the clerk still looked at me like I was a stingy MF and thought my ‘excuse’ of “I have already contributed to the ACS” was an excuse to get away with donating.

    During the March of Dimes campaign, one Walgreen’s worker told me the reason they are so aggressive is that they have internal competitions to win a nice prize as the clerk with the most collections. While collecting for the MofD or ACS is commendable, I feel the next time I am hit up at the register I am going to walk away to another register and give the money to another employee.


  42. sodden says:

    I usually say no when someone calls or knocks on my door. Usually they get insistent and try to plead with me. At that point, I tell them I have a rule that I don’t contribute to people that call me or knock on my door.
    (local school kids selling candy is different however)
    I do enjoy how some charities offer to then mail me their brochure. I tell them it’s too late. They already called me and I could no longer contribute to them.
    Some don’t learn though, such as the local groups that take used clothing. I tell them to stop calling me but they still call me every 3 months, or did until I ended my land line.

  43. sodden says:

    Anyone else find that checkbox marked “for sharing” on certain utility companies bills highly disgusting? Supposed to mark it and write down how much extra you’ll pay this month. I just know it’s going to pay off their bad debts first.

  44. snoop-blog says:

    @sodden: I’m with ya. I seen that and was like what the f- crack would one have to smoke to be possessed enough to donate on a utility bill.

  45. trujunglist says:

    I have no problem denying someone random a request for charity. The problem occurs when it’s someone I know…

  46. SexierThanJesus says:

    I tend to give to charities that assisted myself and my family (American Cancer Society, Red Cross, St Jude’s). It’s more of a gratitude thing. Any others are selective…you really never know where your money is going. I usually also donate to soup kitchens in lieu of giving to people on the streets.

  47. Eilonwynn says:

    The only charity that I’ll donate to in a public place (as opposed to a private, mailed in cheque) is the Salvation Army – I may not totally agree with their politics, but they kept my grandfather from starving during the depression, so i’ll always throw some money in. I tend to donate directly to small local causes instead, and feel no shame in saying “i’m sorry, I already did my donation for the year”

  48. dugn says:

    Whenever I get the urge to contribute to some charitable cause, I remember what happened the last time I did: They re-used my phone number for future contributions to the original firm and ones they thought had related causes.

    Now it’s EASY to say no. And if they ask, I tell them why. They promptly, leave me alone and remove my number from their lists.

  49. sisedi says:

    I thought our taxes did plenty of donating already?

  50. Snarkysnake says:

    @snoop-blog: @snoop-blog:

    You’re living my charitable life,my friend.

    I used to work at one of those companies that raised a gajillion dollars for a certain charity and then the CEO went on TV and took all the credit for it. I didn’t mind them getting the money, but all the company contributed was the space next to the registers to handy-vac customers change.They made it out like this was a big deal. And of course you can imagine how they leaned on the district managers to lean on us to push this on people. I came to resent it greatly because the DM’s were asshats about it and turned it into their ass kissing trophy at the annual performance review.

    Contributing to “Cops”. I tell these assholes to fuck off. They try to make it sound like they are calling from the station house and that the money will go to police officers and their families. Horseshit. The overwhelming majority of the cash goes to the assholes that have basically rented the right to say that they are calling on behalf of the police.If you give them any money,you may as well set a match to it. Hell, the taxes we pay have gone one way lately (and that way is not DOWN). I resent having to tell these insistent assholes to never call me again.But they always do.

    Just my two cents…

  51. Pfluffy says:

    “No.” is a perfectly understood complete statement. I can’t stand when some schmuck insists he can change my mind after I give him a firm, “No.” Those who ignore my “no”s live to regret it.

    I may enjoy that just a little too much deep, deep inside my soul.

    No body want to hear about a serious illness in my family, my under employment, my burned home, a theft I experienced, a lawsuit with my name on it, how hard I have to work to hang on to just meager daily belongings, and my daily trials and tribulations. Be glad to only hear, NO, and leave it at that because as firm as my NO is, it is the most courtesy I can muster for some of the more aggressive charity beggars.

    And the posted warning on my front door about my missing poisonous snake usually keeps door to door begging at a minimum. And no, I don’t donate to the bell rining Salvation Army individuals who set up shop outside the shopping centers around Halloween either. Give me a break.

  52. StellaSquash says:

    i just say “we’ve already budgeted our donations for this year”.

  53. curmudgeon5 says:

    I manage a charity and have some advice on this topic. First, charities vary widely in how effectively they use money. If you’re considering a donation, it’s worth finding out what percentage of their funds goes to direct program support vs. administrative overhead. You can find out at sites like and various charity rating bureaus.

    However, the best way to determine if a charity is worth your money is to look at what results they’re getting (or not getting). Browse their web site, look at what they’ve achieved, and decide if they’re using their money effectively. It’s really all about results — donate to the groups that have a track record of turning funds into action. A charity could have very responsible fiscal policies (high percentage going to direct program support versus overhead), but if they’re not getting anything done, put your money elsewhere.

    A couple of people mentioned that some charities pay high salaries to their employees. Just like any other business, charities get what they pay for; if they want to hire good people who will get great results, they need to pay competitive salaries. Just like in any sector, one well-paid person who kicks butt at their job is worth four or five lower-paid incompetent, lazy people.

  54. dweebster says:

    There’s a little nonprofit outfit called “Consumer Reports” that has the oddly unethical practice of adding your name BY DEFAULT WITH NO OPT OUT OPTION just for signing up for their magazine. Of course, once you start getting your magazine and a bunch of crap mail, IF you somehow coded your subscription so you know CR was the source – you can find their phone number in the magazine and call them to “opt out.” Of course, once the marketeers get ahold of your information they are loathe to let go – the genie is out of the bottle.

    Thanks for the shitmail, Consumers Reports – you’ve lost a subscriber but the recurring junkmail will keep your memory alive. Now, if only there were a group dedicated to standing up for consumer rights that could go to bat for us in situations like this… hmmm…………..

  55. I have already exceeded my charitable budget for the month/year.

    It says you are “good person”, but can’t afford to donate to that particular cause at this time.

    Year works better to keep the repeat trollers away, but for most “requests” the monthly comment seems to go over nicer.

  56. Snaptastic says:

    That photo reminds me of when I lived in Columbus, Mississippi. My first Halloween there I got a bunch of candy ready, but after several hours I only had one knock to the door. It was a teenage mother and her 2 kids–I held the candy to the kids and offered them to take as much as they wanted (since I hadn’t had any other visitors)–then the mother pushed the two kids aside after they took a few pieces and tried scooping handfuls into her own bag, until I yanked it away from her.

    I never bothered with any other Halloweens after that.

  57. coolkiwilivin says:

    That’s why we need to vote for Obama. Everybody will get taxed up to their Ear and you won’t have money left over to worry about. Oh don’t worry about it you are rich. It doesn’t matter how much you make you’re rich. Oh well, the US WAS one of the generous giving countries in the world.

  58. PinkNightmare says:

    @MissPeacock: This drives me crazy! My town has four major intersections and there used to be people there EVERY DAY…morning, noon and night! It got to be where I hated driving anywhere! I still have no clue who or what they were collecting for…I referred to them as the Philipino Nurses, because that is what they looked like. After a few months of this – and, I assume, a slew of complaints – the town passed an ordinance requiring all those solicitors to meet a bunch of requirements as well as fill out a butt-load of forms!

  59. darkryd says:

    This is an easy one.

    Just say: “No, thank you”.

    You’re not obligated to explain any further. Plain and simple.

  60. chenry says:

    “I gave at the office”

  61. IrisMR says:

    well it’s simple. I just don’t give to charities.

    Some charities are such big money making companies I just don’t trust any anymore. You pay 10 bucks and a few dimes go to the actual cause after employees are paid and such.

  62. BigElectricCat says:

    We already pre-plan and budget for our charitable giving.

    One time, a kid shilling for some sort of anti-drug charity pressed his point after I declined, saying “but it’s for a really good cause.”

    My reply? “I’m sure it is, but I can only support so many really good causes. And I’m afraid that I won’t be able to support yours. But I do wish you good luck.”


  63. MissGayle says:

    I have a notebook where I write down the mailing address and webpages for the charities that I like and would like to support. So when someone comes, I get out the notebook, take the information down, and say, “We have a budget for two charities per month. Let’s see, looks like the rotation will come around to you in about…3 1/2 years. Thanks!”

  64. jillian says:

    I also chose my charities carefully, and set up automatic donations to each one. Now, I feel no guilt throwing out the random solicitation letters, or saying “no” to phone calls – especially when it’s a charity that covers a similar cause to one of the existing recipients. Being polite & wishing them good luck is about all I can do, and I know it.

  65. Jackasimov says:

    I just pretend I don’t see them. I look straight ahead. Lock my car doors. Turn up the stereo. Take a sip of my cola. Scratch my face. Stare at the hole in the knee of my pants. Pretend to be having an important business conversation on my cell phone. Flip through magazine. And whatever else is at hand until the light changes. The I give them the finger and drive away quickly.

    Sometimes I give them a few bucks.

  66. nacoran says:

    I love that Eddie Murphy skit.

    I’m pretty good at saying no to charities when I’m tight on cash. I like to give if I’ve got it. I don’t give to charities that do phone solicitations because I don’t like being called at home and it’s to easy to find yourself on a phone list that gets sold all over the place.

    What bothers me is the calls I get from Police Benevolence organizations. I think it’s wrong for any organization with ‘authority’ to collect donations in a non-anonymous way. It’s too much of a conflict of interest.

    I also don’t like the firemen would stand at busy intersections and solicit, because they cause traffic jams and unsafe traffic conditions. (I’m not a big fan of ‘honk if you support us’ demonstrators for the same reason, although I’ve been guilty of that myself. To be fair we were protesting that the local mall had moved the bus stop out away from the mall to a really busy road where people have to stand in the cold and risk traffic, so at least it had something to do with the protest.)

  67. SinisterMatt says:

    I’ve tried being noncommittal with door to door people. Several times it will tick them off and they storm off all mad like, as if I insulted them or shot their dog or something. Sheesh. Not good tact at all.

    The ones that irk me are these people that sell magazine subscriptions or candy to help them get points to go on a trip or something from time to time in our apartment complex. They usually come by at various times during the year. Some obnoxious people. I usually let them do their spiel, and then tell them I can’t afford it (which is true, as being married, being in grad school, and magazine subscriptions are not compatible with each other). Sometimes after a few attempts at pushing, they will just ask me for a dollar donation or something. Sheesh. Or they will use swear words in their presentation, at which point I completely turn my brain off and let them finish.

    /end rant

    I find that the best way to say no is to just say that my budget doesn’t allow for any more giving than I already do. You have to be insistent, but it generally works just fine. To avoid feeling bad, that really has to be true.


  68. jimmydeweasel says:

    Ever since I found out that the CEO of the United Way was taking the Concord ( this was 20 years ago ) I keep it local. Like the single moms that dance on a pole. I give them lots of dollars.

  69. trujunglist says:

    I hate those guys that come to my door trying to sell candy and crap that I don’t want at like a 300% markup. This weekend some dude came to my door and I was like “no, sorry, I don’t want anything” and he’s like “well hold on, I’m not selling anything, I just want to tell you about such and such…” and yet he’s holding his plastic bin of shit to sell, and I’m like “do you not see the ghetto ass apartment that I’m living in? I don’t have any money to give to you.” He looked hurt and insulted, but it’s like fuck it man, I don’t have to feel bad, I’m poor, where’s my donation?

  70. scottybas says:

    I always say, “No thanks” and leave it at that. Although, sometimes I am tempted to say rather loudly, “Noooooooo!”