Just about an hour ago. I guess they decided to skip the phone call operation altogether.
Brendan answered the door and the woman identified herself as coming from the Census Bureau and wanted to know if we had received our survey. Brendan said that we had but that we didn't want to fill it out.
No problem! All she REALLY needed to know was how many people lived in the house and their ages. She "didn't even need to know our names." She glanced over at the children--one of whom, I am extremely proud to say, was completely nude. (I was still in my pjs myself--it's been one of those days.)
I find it interesting that she immediately told us that she only really needed the number of people and ages. In the survey, you are supposed to fill out everyone's complete names and dates of birth. Plus 26 more pages of information. Hmph.
Anyway, Brendan started to tell her how many people lived here when I reminded him that this is not a census year and that we should not even answer that question.
I walked up to the door and said something like, "We're not going to answer any questions. No thanks."
She seemed more than a little surprised at our refusal. Either she's new, or only a very, very small minority of people completely refuse to cooperate. She just stared at me for a few seconds, and then remembered:
"Well, you know, this is mandatory."
So I said, and I will admit to being more than a little flustered by this point, "Oh, sure, I know that. Come back with a warrant. Goodbye!" And I closed the door.
Now the "warrant" comment was perhaps just a teensy bit of an overreaction, I realize! But damn, it was sure fun to say! :o) Never in a million years would I have imagined something like that coming out of my mouth. I honestly don't know where it came from!
So now I'm sure we're on a list somewhere. My understanding is that they will often pay more than one visit. Our 90 days is up at the end of the month, so hopefully, we won't have to go through more than a couple additional polite-but-forceful refusals.
Ryan had a couple of questions while it was all going on, when I first stepped in and said that we weren't going to answer their questions. But then he got distracted--I'm sure he'll have more questions later.
So there it is--I knew it was going to happen and it wasn't horrible. We stood our ground and were appropriate in front of the kids, which was the most important part. Go us!