Mightier Than The Pen

Making The World A Bitter Place

Unfortunately, No Girl Scout Cookies

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We get a good number of people coming to our doorstep soliciting funds for what I assume to be worthy causes of every stripe. Well, OK, not every stripe; we have yet to encounter anyone collecting for lobbying efforts towards actually getting some unsweetened chocolate made available in this country. It’s not like there aren’t any local chocolate manufacturers. How difficult can it be to market a product that allows the consumer to control the sweetness of a recipe?

So these people come to our door, and one of the following scenarios takes place:

1. Our children are so starved for attention – they never ever get any from us, you see, and this usually happens when we’re sitting around the dinner table, which we do in complete and utter silence lest any of the kids accidentally get some attention – that a knock at the door or a ring of the doorbell, or, more likely, the sound of the front gate unlatching, causes at least two of them to leap out of their seats and throw the door open, whether or not their parents are interested in dealing with whoever is there. At that point we usually remain out of sight and direct the children either to politely inform the visitor that we are in the middle of dinner, please go jump in a lake, or we actually relay some money through the kids without showing our faces. The spiel tends to be lost on the junior set.

2. We manage to yell the children back to their seats, which of course makes it obvious that we are home and purposely ignoring the caller. This offers the tantalizing possibility of alienating the visitor, preventing his return, but no proof of its efficacy has become evident yet.

3. The children are either away or asleep, leaving us to decide on our own whether to greet the solicitor or pretend not to exist until he departs.

4. There’s so much noise in the house – the stereo, the mixer, the dishwasher, the running water, the death match of the moment between whichever kids have decided to antagonize anyone and everyone that day – that the doorbell goes unheard, or the knock unanswered. We have no idea how often this occurs, but we do know that someone screwed up when the doorbell-intercom system was installed, and the bell only rings upstairs. There’s no way to hear it from the kitchen unless the house is quiet enough to give a corpse the creeps.

Other theoretical possibilities exist: we could pretend not to speak any language in common with the visitor; we could put up a sign that says, in so many words, We Gave at the Office; we could never be home. That latter would be quite a challenge to a couple who both work from home most of the time, but if you threw a catered lunch into the mix, we might go for it. And don’t interrupt us while we’re eating.



Written by Thag

November 8, 2010 at 9:50 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

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