Tuesday, December 16, 2008


This is what it says on our front door. It's one of those thermal-printed labels that are the modern equivalent of the dymo labels we stuck all over everything when I was a kid. Robert, in a fit of anger, put it there because he was sick of the yard crews looking for work who kept stopping at our house. Never mind that there was a reason they stopped at our house, but it was aggravating.

Now, nobody hates people who are not friends or neighbors ringing the doorbell to sell us things, or tell us about their (insert religious document here) more than me. I came so close to making a laminated sign to put on our door listing all of the people who are liable to be met with a large, rage-spewing woman if they ring the bell. I have not completely ruled out that option, as our cute little "NO SOLICITING" sign has been ignored. As far as I am concerned, they can all just jump into the fiery pit along with spammers, telemarketers and pushy car salesmen. If I had lived in the day of the Fuller Brush and bible salesmen, I would probably today be an aged woman who spent most of her adulthood in jail. I don't even like most commercials. Watching programming directed at kids especially pisses me off. I find it hard to believe that most people don't feel insulted by the crap that shows up between shows, and even in them sometimes. I love my DVR.

To further illustrate how much I hate being solicited, with few specific exceptions, let me tell you about the fitness center. I recently went to the new fitness center that opened up in my neighborhood a few months ago. I went in on the defensive, because the sales people at fitness centers are notoriously pushy. My jaw nearly dropped when the guy actually asked me if he could call me to remind me before the sale ended. I told him he could call me if he wanted to irritate me. He said he would not. I was even more surprised when the end of the sale passed (yesterday) and he did not call. I was tempted to join, in spite of the fact that the new-building smell of the place made me dizzy for the remainder of the afternoon after just being in there for 20 minutes. I so appreciated being treated as if I could decide on my own! The fact that I am so surprised by the experience is sort of sad.

I was thinking about it this morning. I was thinking about how our kids participated in so many fundraisers one year that our neighbors quit answering the door if any of our family members rang the bell. We could actually hear them walking up to the door to see who it was and walking away. I was thinking about how good it is supposed to be for the kids to go door-to-door...or at least that is the idea behind it, right? Why don't more parents object to having their kid put people on the spot so that their school can keep a relatively small fraction of the overpriced crap that they are selling? We stopped buying most of it. Now we just donate a little money to the cause, and let the school keep all of it. Even though we would cost ourselves more by buying, the school gets to keep more that way.

So, why this today? No idea. I was just thinking about it. I guess it is time for me to get out of bed and clean the bathroom now, before someone smells it from outside and rings our doorbell to ask if we need someone to clean it. I would be so tempted...

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