please be kind to your census taker

Census takers who work in the city walk block after block knocking on doors, carrying all of the forms and manuals along with them. They sometimes feel like beasts of burden, but at least the houses follow a predictable pattern, and more often than not are right where one would expect them to be.

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Not so in the country. We have the luxury of carrying our offices (the passenger seat) with us while driving down charming winding roads. Finding what we are looking for though: that can be difficult. People sell off pieces of land, houses get sandwiched in, and it seems like addresses get slapped on willy nilly, with no real master plan. Trailers or sheds get turned into living quarters, whole properties get fenced off with no way to know what is going on back there, and not everyone is thrilled to be asked a few fairly unintrusive questions, even with the promise of federal dollars being pumped into the community in direct proportion to the numbers counted by us, the always polite, unfailingly friendly government workers who dare to set foot on their sacred ground.

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Don’t get me wrong. People are people, no matter where they live, and these McMansions on the hill have more than their share of folks who treat them as fortresses and us as marauding invaders out to strip them of…what? And just as many warm welcomes and offerings of ice water and a seat in the shade. I am sure that you, gentle readers, would all fall into the latter category.

6 Responses to “please be kind to your census taker”

  1. Grace Says:

    Hi Ricki, Rude people suck!

    What I don’t get is why it is so difficult to fill out the form and send it back, which would completely negate the need for trained workers, paid for with our tax dollars, to trek up to their door and get the information. I mean if they’re so anti-door-to-door census worker, then why didn’t they just fill out the dang form to begin with?

    My sister and brother-in-law are census workers for Baker county. I think people forget that you government workers are just people–not members of some elite conspiracy.

    Or are you? :))

  2. Loree/ danger garden Says:

    I echo Grace’s comment. Why not just fill out the darn form!?

  3. Jane Says:

    Hi Ricki,

    I’m so dense I didn’t figure out in the previous post that you were serving us as a census taker. The penny has dropped, now, and I can quite believe that you are encountering the varied mass of humanity. I had a friend once who worked for the DMV in California: same story, although there people want you to do something for them.
    I’m glad you’re encountering a few nice folks. I hope there are lots more in your census future! For the record, I sent ours in the day after it arrived.

  4. Wendy Says:

    Ditto. Why not fill out the form?! It does look a little tedious, but once you read it, it’s not too bad. Even my non-speaking English parents could manage.

    I never thought about how the census gets a little complicated in the country. Are you enjoying the tour though? I might enjoy getting up close and personal with people’s houses - checking out the yards, peeking in windows, stuff like that. :)

  5. ricki Says:

    Thank you all for your comments. I am enjoying myself, but have realized how much I miss our little blogging community when I don’t have time to check in regularly. You’re the best!

  6. Rosy Mccubrey Says:

    Made my night. I’m finding your recent posts now

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