Thursday, March 31, 2016

You Want My Opinion?

     I don’t mind giving my opinion.  Usually that just means heaving unkind words at the news guy on TV.  But occasionally I’ll do one of those telephone surveys.  Or even an on-line survey.  Somehow I even subscribed to e-rewards which I get if I complete on-line questionnaires on various topics. 

    So I’ve taken a number of those surveys on various topics from brands of whiskey I might drink to what I think of various political advertisements.  For all of that, I’ve accumulated $46 in e- rewards, enough for a free subscription to Time magazine.  I still haven’t cashed in any of my e-rewards.

     Sometimes these surveys appear to be veiled pitches for products of some kind.  For example, I received an e-survey on automobile brands.  When I said I wasn’t going to be purchasing a new car in the next 24 months, suddenly I didn’t qualify for the survey.  Hmmm, do you think if I had taken the survey and expressed an interest in buying a particular car brand that I might have been subject to multiple internet ads featuring that vehicle brand?

    Doesn’t it seem at times that anything that originates on the internet is a scam of some sort?   I wish some survey would propose that particular question to me some day.

    Though I haven’t received any e-rewards, I did get paid a hundred bucks recently for rendering judgment in a taste test involving a fast food product.  Since I signed a confidentiality agreement, I don’t want to be more specific.

    I was recruited by phone and since I had the time (retired), I thought, “Why not?”  So I went at my appointed time and found myself among a group of serious-looking folks all there for the same purpose.  The guy next to me wondered how so many of us could fit into one conference room but one of the organizers soon announced that they had deliberately overbooked.  Those whose names were not called would still get the hundred bucks.

    My name was called fifth.  Darn.  But I still had an out.  Another supervisor announced that anyone not comfortable working on a computer would be excused also (with pay), since we had to make our responses on a laptop.  I almost chimed in, “What’s a computer?”

    Anyway, I felt as if I were taking a college exam or something.  Everything went by so fast and there were so many questions to answer.  I’d be answering one set of questions and a supervisor would be discussing the next set.  I assumed they wanted honest answers, so I told them how my wife factors into my choices of what fast foods we consume in our household.  That took some explaining.

    Since I figured those reading the comments might get bored from time to time as well, I tried to be creative with my answers as well, one time quoting a line from a Wallace and Grommit movie.  Don’t know why but it was the first thing that popped into my mind.  If they’d given me more time, I could have been more original.

     Well, I hope they realize that my answers couldn’t be perfect.  But then neither was the outfit that was in charge of all this.  They misspelled my name on the check.   Well, anyway, even if it bounces at my bank, I got free pizza out of the deal.