A few weeks ago, I had taken the day off from work to run some errands. I had gone to lunch with a friend of mine, and when I returned, I was treated to this spectacle: a woman I've never seen before was cleaning my carpet. She had 6 or 8 black cloths lying on the floor, soiled with all the dust and filth she had successfully pulled out of our carpet. My husband and his friend, who had joined him for lunch, were standing and watching helplessly as this woman barged into our house and proceeded to show them how much they needed a Kirby.
I walked in, watched for about 2 minutes and then announced, "Well, you guys have fun. I'm going to take a nap." (Yes, it was a cheap attempt to extricate myself from the situation, but I wasn't the one who let her in the house.) But Oh, no, Ms. Kirby was definitely of the sexist mindset that women do the majority of housecleaning, so she said, "Just wait, Jen, I'll be done in about 10 minutes. I want you to see all the great things this Kirby does!"
Ten minutes became 45 minutes. And she was still going. She insisted on vacuuming my favorite chair, which really did not turn out much dirt. I am happy to exist with that small amount of grime surrounding me - it's just enough to add a little cushion to favorite chair. I became increasingly frustrated at her audacity, especially when she demanded that I let her vacuum our mattress. On our bed. In our bedroom. Disturbing.
On a side not, as Ms. Kirby was demonstrating her wares, she also managed to show us wares that we had no interest in buying, as her shirt was cut low and large and swooped down almost to the floor as she leaned over to change equipment. We all diverted our eyes uncomfortably, especially my husband's lunch guest who happens to be a single, celibate man who has devoted his life to the Lord's service.
I have always been of the mindset that, if something works well, it is worth the money. A Kirby makes sense because it not only pulls the dirt out of the carpet and the pad underneath, but it also preserves the life of your carpet. (But, let's face it. How many people want to keep the same carpet after 20 years? If you chose that beautiful shade of chartreuse back in the 80's, you may just want a change by now.) Even so, it makes sense to buy something that is worth the money, right?
However, we didn't happen to have $2300 lying around to purchase a Kirby that day. Yes, you read that correctly - over 2 Grand for a Kirby. So, of course, the nice lady offered us an affordable payment plan of $44/month. Even so, I politely explained that since my husband is on disability and I am going to cut back on my work hours, we weren't able to make a financial commitment at that time, no matter how great the deal was. So, she offered us the "6-month, no payments, no interest" plan. This lady was just not getting it. My husband is out of work. Due to a stroke. And we have 4 kids. She assured us - more than once - "well, the last thing I want to do is take food off the table", but she always followed that statement with a "but". She also threw in a lame comment about earning so many points and she would be able to take a trip to Cancun. Um, how exactly was that going to convince us to buy a Kirby?
Her last "but" was this phone call: She wanted to call her manager so that we could talk to him and assure him that she did her job (i.e. so that he could give us a hard sell over the phone). She hung up and said, "he's just going to come over." Here is the truly creepy part: About 3 minutes later, her manager showed up, which made me wonder where on earth he was hiding the entire time. He was a large man, simple-looking man, well over 6 feet tall. He ducked in through our doorway, and (I'm not usually a judgmental person), but my first thought was "serial killer."
So, tell me this. Telemarketers are obnoxious enough. Junk mail and spam are annoying. But what gives someone the right to barge their way into your home and practically force you to buy something that you weren't really in the market for?
I may think highly of Kirby vacuum cleaners, but we finally convinced the sales team to leave without purchasing one. In fact, I will probably never buy one, based on their horrible sales tactics.