HELP! I’M A PRISONER OF PUBLISHER’S CLEARING HOUSE!
Okay, I’m a sucker, ready to be exploited, I know that already. I also know there’s one of me born every minute.
Somehow I drifted into this PCH prison months ago, when Publisher’s Clearing House first offered to put my husband on their list of possible winners—you know, the roster that promises somebody will soon win $5000 a week for life. When I first signed up, “soon” was touted as the end of June. Yes—last month. The date has now been extended to end-of-August.
I never should have read their literature--never should have given them the slightest nod. Most important, I NEVER should have shared my email address.
Since that moment of passing stupidity, my inbox has been bombarded with two to four messages every day, which vary from bright, golden promises “Just press this button and you’ll be forever on the list—don’t you WANT $5000 a week?” to threats—“If you don’t sign in NOW, you’ll forfeit every chance . . . ” and I find myself thinking, “Well, I’ve come this far . . .”
Any jailhouse crew would call this the “Good Cop, Bad Cop” approach, which seems to work fairly well with criminals and . . . well, me.
Oh, they use it, all right. But nothing is as simple as pressing a single button. Once tapped into their site, you’re bombarded with bells and kaleidoscopes and music, and then a continuous parade of bargain merchandise, a list that, if scrolled on paper, would reach from my second floor office down to the basement (if we had one), a list you can’t get out of until you’ve viewed each and every item—or alternatively, turned off your computer.
Most days I bravely ignore PCH . . . until finally an irresistible message arrives, and I once again press a button and walk where only fools would dare to tread. And once more I put myself on a merry-go-round from which there’s no escape.
But here’s the amazing part—this isn’t just crappy merchandise.
Among the “stuff” are dozens of household items I’d like to own . . . and more than that, hundreds of merchandisers who are so respectable you can’t imagine why they’d stoop to advertising on Publisher’s Clearing House. Time Magazine. The fancy Atholl Palace Hotel (already booked by us in Scotland), every insurance company, every magazine, every household item, every gadget, every business service you’ve ever heard of. Like me, PCH has roped them all in.
How did they do it? How does it happen that their list gets longer every day--and yes . . . more respectable?
Somehow PCH realizes they’ve gotta keep us pigeons going, must keep harvesting those millions of dollars in sales . . . a tactic which is now heading in the direction of ending months from now—long past August.
When you think a little deeper, the answer is simple: as we all know, there’s a sucker born every minute. But a whole lot of them happen to own businesses.