I was getting over a cold.  Ellie had barely napped so I was feeling extra exhausted and all I wanted to do was rest.  Finally at 5:00pm, Ellie quietly sat next to me eat her cheerios.  This always buys me a lot of time because her hand-eye coordination isn’t the greatest yet.  It takes her 5 tries to get the Cheerio in her mouth and then it keeps falling out.  Then she repeats.  So I was lying on the floor, half in a daze, Ellie with her snacks, and feeling relaxed.  And then someone knocked on the door.  Ah man…  The window was open too, they could probably see me lying there, I guess I had to get it.  But maybe it’s a kid selling candy bars, I could go for one of those, I thought.  I had to get it now.  I brought Ellie to intimidate whoever was there, to reverse pressure them into leaving.  Who wants to sell something to me when I have a fussy kid in my hands right?  I got to the door and there were two guys with ties.  He said something really fast as he handed me a thing of Bounty paper towel telling me it was free.  Kinda of confused as to what was actually happening, I said, “uh, ok.”  They got excited and said they would be right back.  I stood there stunned and very worried to what I just agreed to.

They came back with two big boxes and they started moving the table out of the way and asking me questions.  The thing in the box was a vacuum, but not only a vacuum.  It was a Kirby.  I then realized, these were door-to-door salesmen.  I didn’t know they still existed.  And they were selling vacuum cleaners.  This sounded so stereotypical of the 1950s.  I was the lonely housewife trapped at home and they were trying to take advantage of me.  Should I offer them a beverage, I thought.  What would June Cleaver do?  They said that they were not “selling” these, they were just giving demos, because these aren’tsold in stores.  I could handle a demo I thought.  So the first guy Todd leaves, and Chester stays behind to give me the demo that I somehow agreed to.  So now it’s me, Chester, Ellie… and a Kirby.

So the demo starts.  Ellie is afraid of vacuums, and really hadn’t slept all day.  I was getting over being sick, I was tired and not feeling well.  This combined with a stranger vacuuming my house showing me how dirty it was just didn’t seem like a good combination.  Ellie hung on to me for dear life as the vacuum roared on and off.

As the demo progressed I started getting interested in this machine.  It looked cool, it did a good job, etc.  But I was also tired of standing, and standing with a baby in my arms.  So I glanced at the clock and realized this guy wasn’t going anywhere anytime soon.  I quickly became disinterested and was just waiting it out.  I wanted him to leave before my Aya got home. That could be a whole new set of trouble for me.

Finally, the demo was coming towards an end.  Chester called Todd to come back and pick him up.  Chester was very professional, very thorough, and I think he knew I had no intention of buying a vacuum.  He was reading my cues, my wife’s cues, and Ellie’s cues.  Todd on the other hand, after sitting in the van for two hours popping caffeine pills and downing Red Bulls, was not going to take no for an answer.

I think if I just say “it’s a great machine, but we bought a new vacuum about 6 months ago,” that they would leave.  WRONG.  Todd heard this as “please try harder, I want one of these.”  He kept telling me he’s not “selling” these.  He told me, it’s a choice of choosing to live in this filth with this dirt, or to live without it.  He tried to guilt trip me into buying one, that my house wasn’t safe.  I made it this far in this filth so far. I think we’ll be okay.  I told him, “I’m gonna have to choose to live in it.  I don’t have $2,000 to spend on a vacuum cleaner right now.”  Keep in mind, I’m not an aggressive person and I don’t do well during awkward confrontations.  Some may even call me a push-over at times.  So as Todd kept pressuring me and pressuring me, I was staying firm, but polite.  Too polite.

By now, Aya was home and I was trying to keep her out of it because I know it’ll take a bad turn.  But Todd was one persistent fellow, and also stupid.  Todd brought Aya into it.  I kept thinking, you’re poking the bear, you’re poking the bear.  You don’t insult the people you are trying to sell something to.  He kept saying he felt sorry for us to live like this, especially with children.  Aya had no problem holding back.  She gave him the hand and said, “I don’t appreciate your high pressure sales tactics, and you are interrupting our family time.  I don’t like your guilt tripping either.”  Todd just kept going, but he was getting ruder and ruder and more disrespectful.  And being desperate he kept saying that we’ll help them make their goal for the contest so they can go to Florida.  I don’t care, Aya doesn’t care if they go to Florida.  We weren’t paying $2,000 so these clowns could go to Florida.  Chester stayed quiet.  He knew this wasn’t going anywhere.  I chimed in again politely saying, “we can’t spend that money right now, maybe in the future.”  Then he called Aya sweetheart.  He poked the bear.  “Do NOT call me sweetheart.”  Now Aya was really pissed.

Needless to say, we didn’t buy the Kirby, and after this, we never will buy a Kirby.  After some last few mildly polite words, they finally packed up and left.  Aya heatedly went upstairs to get Ellie ready for her bath.  Ellie was nude crawling on the carpeted floor excitedly awaiting her bath… and then she peed on the carpet.  Wait a minute, we did get that free roll of Bounty.  I guess the last two and half hours wasn’t a complete waste after all.

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