QUESTION: How would we go about stopping mailings that we receive from different companies and individuals wanting to purchase our property? We have not solicited this at any time. We don’t have any property for sale, but we get so many different little post cards and letters.

ANSWER: I can’t guarantee this will stop everything, but you can register with the Direct Marketing Association Preference Service — it’s like a do not call list for your mailbox. (It’s also the step the Federal Trade Commission suggests to address unwanted mail.)

The Direct Marking Association was created in 1917 and consists of about 3,600 organizations and companies involved in direct marketing.

The fastest way to get this taken care of is to register online at . A $2 processing fee allows you to register and make choices about the kinds of mail you receive for a 10-year-period. You can also make similar choices about emails you receive. (That website also has options for managing mail of people who have died and who are under your care.)

The association also provides an option online to print out a mail-in form, or you can just send your name and address along with a $3 processing fee (make out a check or money order to DMA) to: DMAChoice; DMA; PO Box 900; Cos Cob, CT 06807.

The issue with this is that it might not stop everything, including mail from local businesses.

Read more about how to stop unwanted mail and phone calls at .

Q: I just finished watching a movie, “Captain Phillips,” which was released in 2013 about the captain of a container ship hijacked by Somali pirates in 2009. It’s quite an interesting movie. At the end of the credits it said the captain, Richard Phillips, had returned to the sea in 2010. Is he still at sea or has he retired?

A: I found news reports that said Phillips retired in 2015. He is still on the speaker’s circuit, though, speaking at a Friends of Scouting event in March in Chattanooga, Tennessee, for instance.

RAILROAD CROSSING UPDATE: I wanted to provide a little update on what’s going on with the railroad crossing on Eastman Road at Gum Springs Road. I heard from a representative of BNSF Railway this week, who said the crossing is safe for vehicular traffic, but the company has identified an area that needs repair.

“After attempting to make a temporary repair, our engineering team has found that we will need to do more work on this area. We will be reaching out to coordinate with (the Texas Department of Transportation) to schedule this maintenance,” the representative said in an email.

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