I was working at home the other day and the doorbell rang. It was a salesperson. He was going door to door in the neighborhood.
"I was just setting up your neighbor Patricia (btw, I don't know any neighbor named Patricia, so that doesn't influence me in the least) with our special offer on pest prevention. Only $149 and we treat the interior of the house for ants, spiders, roaches, fleas, and 15 other kinds of crawling insects. Not only that but we treat the outside of the house for wasps, spiders, ants, termites, and roaches. Not only that but we treat the grass around the house three feet out from the foundation--that's something no other service offers--all for the introductory price of $149."
Now, I'm not going to go into the whole conversation. But let me just say that this guy was hard
selling. Like hard hard
selling. Like people who hard sell for a living would listen to him and go "Dayum, son! That is some hard selling shit you got going on!"
And he would not take no for an answer. And he smiled from ear to ear the entire time.
It was so creepy I almost called the cops.
First of all, there was no truck or car around anywhere. How did he get here? Walk? Did he hit up everyone in the neighborhood? (Not really unusual. Sometimes a truck from some business or another--usually carpet cleaning, window replacement, or tree services--will drop a dozen salespeople off in a neighborhood so they can go door to door.) There was really no way of telling.
In fact, it occured to me, that if this were a horror movie, he'd be smiling away on my front porch, while his partner was breaking into the back of the house and sneaking up on me from behind. Then, they'd spend hours killing me in the privacy of my own home. He was just so insistent--he kept dropping the price of this super service, all the way down to $19. Now how is a $149 service ever only $19?
What if this guy were just scouting the area to see who was home in the daytime, and who has the most stuff to rob? (The answer is, not me
. Unless you need yarn. I've probably got all the neighbors beat on yarn.)
Looking back on it, I wish I had
called the police. It just seems so very shady. The only reason I didn't was that this sort of thing happens often in the summer. Businesses seem to think it's okay to go door to door and try to sell people stuff that, if they really wanted, they would contact the business for. I suspect the reason it happens so much in this neighborhood is because there are so many senior citizens here. Senior citizens are low-hanging fruit for these jackals. (Is that a mixed metaphor? Do jackals eat fruit? I don't know.)
The tree service people use their standard sales tactics of "The wind could blow a branch right through your roof. You can't afford to pay for a new roof."
Or "Those trees are dropping debris onto your roof and into your gutters. You don't want to have to get up on the roof or on a ladder to clear it. What if you fell? And you can't afford to pay someone to do it for you all the time."
Hence, all the trees in the neighborhood are all "trimmed" down to the nubs. They are disgusting to look at--deformed and stumpy. And these scammers are "trimming" these trees every month.
It's just such a slimy way of doing business. I think that will be my Standard Operating Procedure from now on. After all, it is posted in this neighborhood that soliciting is prohibited. So, these sleazy businesses are just getting what they deserve. But mainly, I want to prevent even worse activity. Like, the thieves casing which houses to steal. Or the crazy pest control guys who kill people in their own homes.