Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Cleaning Agents

I'd like to think we are very welcoming here at Chez Loudshoes. We have been known to open our doors to small children unceremoniously dropped off at our door in the morning, and fed them breakfast. We have welcomed (s0metimes the same) children into our home seeking dry socks at lunchtime. Our door is always open to those in need of computer repair or a beer. We have offered refuge and kleenex to two 9-year olds who's bicycle accident in front of our house resulted in a spectacularly lurid bloody nose. But we do NOT welcome people who come to our door uninvited asking for money. Nuh-unh.

I have helpfully attached a sign to our front door that reads, "NO Agents, Peddlers or Solicitors", which I think makes my position pretty clear. I didn't even get the sign that said "please" on it.
I don't think you could assign any ambiguity to that sign, and yet, several people have done just that over the past few days. That sign does not say to them "you might as well turn around right now, the people who live here are not interested". Apparently, that sign says "Ring the doorbell! Disturb the dwellers within! There's no reason whatsoever to suspect that they will not be enthralled by your charms!! They'll LOVE you!"

One guy was trying to get me to change electric companies, which interested me not at all. I interrupted his speil, pointed to the sign and said "See that? That means you." To which he replied "But, this is a really good deal". I just shook my knife at him and shut the door. (I was peeling potatoes at the time, but I didn't see any reason for him to not think I was crazy.)

Another young woman came to the door to ask for money for a charity. Again, I pointed to the sign and said "See this? That means you." To which she replied, "But I'm not soliciting, I'm asking for donations." To which I, the daughter of an English professor, said "Soliciting means asking", and she replied, hotly, "No! It isn't!" Seriously, did she think that engaging me in an arguement about word definitions and meanings was going to get me to open my wallet?

Then I got some Mormons at the door. Sigh. Believe me, I can totally respect another person's faith, even when I disagree with it myself, and have no desire to change their opinons or beliefs. So why can't they afford me the same? Especially in my own home? I would never knock on someone's door and start to tell them "you know, you've got this whole religion thing down wrong, it's a crock and you are a fool". But they seem to have no problem doing this to me. I politely showed them the sign, said "see this? This means you". To their credit, they didn't argue, but I could tell they thought that the sign was definintely meant for someone else.

The only person I willingly have bought something from when they came to to door was when the kid that Thing 2 babysits was selling popcorn to raise money for his Cub troup to go to the Boy Scout Jamboree. For one thing, I'm never turning down a kid, and secondly, who could thwart a Jamboree?
(The only time I did turn down a kid was when one stopped me in the halls at my children's school and asked if I'd like to give two dollars for autism. I couldn't help myself, I said "no thanks, I don't want any autism". But after I had a good chortle to myself, I gave the kid two bucks anyway. It was momentary.)

If it is waffles and dry socks you are after, this is your place. But if you want my money, you should probably read the sign. Or at least, come to the back door.

1 comment:

Big Liver Girl said...

my children have enjoyed loudshoes pancakes, waffles, cold medicine, a hug, the odd change of clothes and a couple of emergency lunch hour haircuts. How's that for hospitality. It takes a village... and my village requires loudshoes.