Friday, 3 December 2010


Christ, I  thought, why did I open the door for this lunatic?

"Ma'am, we’ve been talking with your neighbors about what can be done to assure that there will be employment and housing for everyone. Do you believe that it is reasonable to expect that human governments will accomplish this?" she says.

Naveen on my hip is squirming now.

"Sorry, what?" I ask, hoping the baby will come through for me with some loud crying.

"Do you believe what we teach from the Bible, namely, that we are living in ‘the last days,’ that soon God is going to destroy the wicked, and that this earth will become a paradise in which people can live forever in perfect health among neighbours who really love one another?"

"Listen, we're not really into religion. At all." Now I'm bouncing the baby, hoping she'll see how busy I am.

"Many folks tell us that. Have you ever wondered why people like me volunteer to make these calls even though we know that the majority of householders may not welcome us?" she's now taking out a pamphlet .

Damn it, she has an answer for everything. It was the bloody snow outside and the cold look on her face that made me even answer the door. Plus she had on a pair of buttery brown leather boots worn on top of black leggings. Can they wear nice boots and leggings? Shouldn't they have to wear a sign or something?

"I should have just told you upfront, I'm not interested in this - uh, your religion." I say. Why can't the phone ring for the love of God?

"Let's not talk of religion. Most people would like to have the kind of government that is free from corruption, one that provides employment and good housing for everyone. What kind of government do you think can do all of that?" She continues completely ignoring my protest.

"Listen, I'm sorry but I don't want to talk about this. I appreciate what you're doing. But I have to go pick up my son from daycare." I say, relieved I thought of something tangible.

She smiles and looks at her watch.

"At 9 A.M.?" she asks.

Now I'm getting pissed.

"Okay, I've been trying to be polite. I am.not.interested in this."

Finally, I can see she gets it. She starts buttoning up her beautiful red wool coat wrapping what looks like a creamy black cashmere scarf around her neck. When the hell did Jehovah's Witnesses start looking like this?

"Maybe I can leave this with you." She says, pushing a pamphlet toward me.

"No, I don't want that." I say, bordering on rudeness now.

I closed the door and even though I was rattled, I couldn't help but notice how calm she stayed until the last minute. What the hell kind of brainwashing were they doing over there that this attractive thirty-something woman was happily willing to have the likes of me practically spit in her face all in the name of religion?

This post was motivated by the Red Writing Hood prompt: Trapped. Click over to read some of the other entries.

Post script: This is a work of fiction. I have nothing against any organized religion. I do however get irritated with door-to-door soliciting of any kind. Except little kids trying to sell cookies or wanting to make money raking leaves or shovelling snow. It helps if they're really cute too.

Besides, I can see a JW a mile away and usually run to the back of the house with the baby and like a coward pretend I'm not home.


  1. LOL, I always ignore the door when JH's come calling too. Luckily I have very steep stairs. It's just not worth the climb ;)

  2. ah, they go to my parent's house all the time.. it's a little weird to me, walking around trying to recruit followers... I just say no thanks and don't really wait for a response... the door starts closing. Rude? probably, but anyone knocking on my door to preach? way annoying!

  3. i dislike door to door salesman matter what they are selling...religion or whatever. i have been getting lots of vacuum cleaner salesmen...trying to sell the kirby! ha ha...

  4. They have driven me to the brink of putting up a no soliciting sign! The real kicker-one who asked if he could use my bathroom. He got a "Hell no!" along with the door closing in his face. (Did I really look that stupid?)
    Great piece Kim!

  5. i have so far nothing against door-to-door salespeople... because i haven't been bothered much. But i have a little empathy for these people and i cannot forgive myself if i am rude to any of them. My part time job in college was as a customer sales associate with retail and that experience taught me a lot.

  6. I used to get solicited EVERY Saturday at 10:30 (It was like clockwork!!) by the same two old ladies. No matter HOW MANY time I told them that I wasn't interested, they insisted on coming back. Of course, after a while I learned to hide in my bedroom closet and ignore the door. I was always afraid they'd see me through the windows if I didn't get in the closet. Haha.. I felt like a lunatic, but it kept them from giving me the same speech over and over again!!

  7. Oh, this makes me sooo happy I live downtown in a building where these people cant get past the courtyard uninvited. Wonderful story.

  8. I totally try to use the baby to show people I don't want to talk with how busy I am. I do agree with Ratz though ... I have worked in both customer service and telemarketing, so I at least try to be nice.

  9. One JH man was very assertive when he would come to my house as I was playing outside with the kids. After about 4 times, I found myself scanning the street for his car before I went out with the kids. One time, Grant opened the door and that was the end of the guy's visits. I wasn't any good at pushing him away, I guess.

  10. One time one of those lunatics told me that animals have no souls and my dog wouldn't be going to heaven. And she thought I was going to buy the crap she was "selling"? Ugh.

  11. You were probably simmering inside but even so maintaining politeness on the outside.

    You being rude is like many people being nice. That's kind of what I gleam from this.

    Funny! Sorry, though, that you had to experience this.

  12. That was good! I've never actually had JH come to my door. But gosh. I certainly was the annoying Christian girl who wanted to witness to you on a Saturday morning while you ate your froot loops.

  13. Nonsense. It shouldn't be a truamatic event. You shouldn't feel compelled to search for a white lie. They fully know, just playing the odds, that most people will be busy or occupied. So you say "Look, I'm really not up for this. Sorry. (jiggle the baby at this point) Appreciate your stopping, but I don't really want to get into it." Or something similar. If there's a comeback line, and if that line changes nothing, just keep the door closing, and say "sorry."

    People somehow think....I guess it's the way we're raised....that you have to render an account for yourself. You don't. You can explain your reasons if you want, but you certainly don't have to.

    They're just acting upon the Bible verse, the one on "preaching the good news," that's all, and it will continue saying what it says regardless of anyone's response. So no need to get worked up over it. If you're busy, you're busy. They understand that. Having a person 'simmer' is no more pleasant for them than it is for you. Believe me, I know.

  14. I love the new pictures on your header!! Cute!!

  15. What's worse is when you know the JW that knocks on the door. I lived in a small town and a girl I went to school with came knocking on my door once. I had to invite her in. Awkward.

  16. Trapped! In your own home! What a nightmare! Loved your fiction for this challenge.

  17. Although proselytizers at my door irritate me, I have to admire their persistence. Someone once joked that Jehovah witnesses should be put in charge of collecting the Census because they sure know how to canvas!

  18. Strangers who knock on my door always make me cringe. But I am the sucker that almost always listens to their pitch no matter what they're peddling. Pretending you're not home? Brilliant.

  19. I'm really late coming over, but it's been that kind of weekend. Thank you for your kind comments on my story and becoming a follower. I was really into this story. I really thought it was nonfiction! Excellent story telling!!! I could sense your frustration and everything else.

    We live at the top of a long hill. When someone WALKS up the long hill to our door, we tend to open it. Ay-yi-yi.

  20. I HATE people coming to my door to sell me their religion.

  21. I feel violated when ANYBODY comes to my house. I don't answer the door. It's intrusive and it brings out the worst in me.

    Ugh. Perfect topic for "trapped."

    Love your writing, as always.


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