Tuesday, October 17, 2006

The Wicked Witch of the West

Yesterday afternoon I was minding my own business, tidying
up my living room while I watched a little Oprah, when the doorbell rang. I am always a little alarmed when I have
unexpected company so I took a peek out of the bay window to see who was
there. It was a white minivan that I
did not recognize. I walked to the door
and opened it ever so slightly. On my
front porch was a young man who immediately made me uncomfortable. I’m not sure why. He just did. My instincts
tend to be pretty accurate so I kept the door cracked and waited for him to
talk, peering at him through the two inch slit between the door and the frame.

He looked at me, smiled and said, “I’m melting. How are you?” and chuckled. It was raining outside but he was no Wicked
Witch of the West. He was MUCH more
creepy than her. I did not
respond. He then handed me a can of
Airwick air freshener and told me that it was his gift to me. What a smooth talker he was, insinuating
that my house smelled without ever having stepped foot in it. Not knowing what to do, I took the air
freshener in my free hand (the other was gripping the door knob, ready to slam
it at anytime) and waited for the catch.

As soon as I had the air freshener in my hand, he took off
for his van saying, “Now, let me run to the car and get the rest of my products
so I can show you what we are all about.”

I immediately said, “No.” and placed the air freshener on
the floor of the porch. “I am not
interested.” He tried to continue his
spiel and kept walking towards his car so I said it again, this time a little
more assertively, “No. Thank you. I am not interested.” I politely slammed the door and locked the
deadbolt. I grabbed my daughter. We ran into her room where the blinds were
closed on the window that faced the front yard. I peered out a slit in the blinds, watching him leave.

I hoped that he would stop in the driveways of my neighbors’
houses but he did not. He kept driving
to the end of the street. My neurotic
mind went crazy. Why did he just stop
at my house? Did he want to test the
water and see if I would open the door to a stranger? Was he scoping out the property for a later burglary attempt? Our home, after all, is filled with
valuables. We’ve got the 27-inch TV
that we bought ten years ago, the china that we bought at Target, my fake Louis
Vuitton purse, and my extensive cubic zirconium collection. Who wouldn’t want to rob us? My husband assured me that he was just a
salesman trying to make a buck and that I had seen one too many episodes of Law
and Order
. He’s probably right but
I’m not taking any chances. The next
time my doorbell rings unexpectedly, I’ll be armed with my son’s baseball bat and some
hairspray to spray in the face of the perpetrator. I will feel pretty awful if the unsuspecting solicitor hands me a
copy of The Watchtower but that’s the price they pay for not calling
before they come over.


  1. I think you are completely rational in your concern for this unannounced guest. I live on a very busy road and several of my good friends have alerted me to the 3 convicted sex offenders who also live on my road(which helps me sleep so much better at night...right). There's a guy that has stopped in my driveway at least 3 times in the last year and knocked on my door when I'm home alone during the day with the girls. However, I do take comfort in the 2 German Shepherds that live in the house with us and are VERY protective of us. I usually take at least 1 of them to the door with me to greet any unannouced guests, who normally, leave in a hurry upon seeing my welcoming committee. So, I would be happy to record my welcoming committee for you, if you would like to play that for your next surprise house guest. They make quite an impression. Just let me know! Ha ha ha!

  2. Just remember, you can get free firearms use instructions from any male member of your husbands family, and we also have an extensive "library" of loaners available if you need them. OK, I know that's not your style, so, I'd say use that safety chain before you crack the door, and, you might get a tape recording of big dogs barking that plays when you hit the door bell. It's better to error on the side of caution, and, there really are a lot of people out there stranger than your in-laws. You might ever want to check with the 'Town Council' to see if door to door is permitted in the City limits. Be safe!

  3. Putting up a "No Soliciting" sign on your front door would probably help a lot. My sister has a pretty nice one...a relatively small engraved brass plate that looks pretty good. You should try that...it would most certainly cut down on your visitors to some extent.

  4. Angie-
    I think I would feel much safer if I had a German Shepherd to accompany me to the door. They might be a little more effective than the hairspray and baseball bat.

  5. Papa Dale-
    Maybe next time we are visiting, I'll accompany my Brother-In-Laws to the shooting range. I'm sure they would love that!

  6. Jacquelyn-
    That's a great idea. I wonder where I can get one. I worry, though, that some of my visitors may be not be the best readers, if you know what I mean.

  7. I had the exact smae thing happen to me once and I am still a little freaked about it. I was at home alone - we live in the country with no close neighbors. Cora was only a couple of days old and was taking a nap when someone in a white van came and knocked on my door. All the things Tom taught me about not answering the door were suddenly forgotten. I answered the door and he acted really weird. He told me he was selling some things and wanted me to go out to his van and look at them. I looked out at the van and their was another man sitting in the van. I told him I wasn't interesed and shut and locked the door, I scooped up Cora and hid out until he left the driveway about 15 minutes later. I was terrified and felt like I was so lucky that he didn't force the door open. I had horrible thoughts of being kidnapped by these men and little Cora screaming in the house all alone until her daddy came home. Yikes. So anyways, I know how you felt and it's very scary.

  8. Joann-
    I got creeped out just reading your story. Yikes. You must have been terrified. Good call on shutting the door and hiding. That's my first instinct as well: cut and run.