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Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Meat, Vacuum Cleaners, and Other High Pressure Sales

If I had to create a list entitled, "Jobs That Must Really Suck," door-to-door vacuum cleaner sales would make the top five.  Perhaps it's the lure of a free sample of off-brand detergent, but the Kirby guy always finds a way through the front door. A promise of fifteen minutes of your valuable time becomes an hour and your internal pledge of not making any purchase without consulting the significant other starts to crumble as you view all of the little mites playing tag on the Folger's coffee filter.  There's a forced acknowlegement that you've lost any chance of receiving that prestigious "Mom of the Year" award as your cleaning habits take center stage under the once-friendly glare of the Kirby guy.  Thrown into fits of guilt for single handedly causing the asthmatic conditions of your little cutie and all of her friends, you kindly offer your new white-gloved cleaning partner some iced tea. Promising you'll straighten up and put Donna Reed to shame with your new cleaning regimen, sweat pools at your temples as you realize that this sweet little salesperson is probably the son of a DSS worker. A prayer that the bedroom mattress is off-limits is never heard as vacuum guy pushes into personal territory.  With a whip of his elongated hose, he pushes aside your bras and nightie and starts the hunt for the ultimate prey---bed bugs. Although it relieves you to learn that you have only a "mild" infestation, the evidence on the coffee filter convinces you that you have to buy THIS vacuum cleaner NOW. No other will do. By god, you have a family to protect no matter what the cost.

When you see the price quote, you immediately wonder if just buying an extra house that the family is only allowed to sleep in might be the cheaper route. Heck, you might have to sell a kid or an internal organ to pull off this purchase. But, alas, your panic quickly resolves as vacuum guy assures you that the price quote is "negotiable." In fact, his supervisor can work out a plan that will cut so deeply into his commission that he will actually lose money on the deal. Oh, the sacrifice, but helping this filthy family is just the right thing to do. He hates your dust mites as much as you do and cares about the ashtmatic conditions of this household. Mother guilt kicks in for the upteenth time that day, and you fall to your knees whilst begging to be the proud owner of this miracle machine. "$2,000.00 you say? Payment plan with a low-interest feature? Well, sign me up and call it a day."

Basking in the glory of a mite free home is overwhelming as you watch Kirby guy pack it up and high tail it to the next mini-vanned home on the street. Passing one another, ice cream truck guy gives a knowing wink to your friend with all the attachments and mouths "Suckas."

And, what about all the door-to-door meat salespeople? That's just simply unnatural. It's a good thing southern moms see through such ridiculous sales ploys, because these meat vendors mean business. "No thanks," for example, might be interpreted as "Man, that one-third centimeter slab of graying meat is toying dangerously with my senses. I want to grab it right out of you semi-refrigerated modified Igloo cooler and eat it raw right here on the front porch."

One word of advice to the protein peddlers out there. Project a catchy tune, paint a few rainbows and unicorns on the side of the truck, throw in a free sample of hardwood smoke bacon, and you might have yourself a deal!

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