Monday, May 17, 2010


There are a few things in this world that annoy me on a consistent basis.

The first is tailgaiting. The second is poor customer service. I am sure in the very near future I will write more on these two irritating phenomenons, but today I am inclined to share my feelings on a new annoyance that has become more and more frequent:

DINGDONGERS. This is the word that I use to refer to the people that go door-to-door peddling their religion.

Now this may offend some of you, but I assure you, that is not my intent.

I usually won't discuss Religion or Politics, as they, well, just don't make funny stories.

We all know the scenario: You're at home, you get the call from a neighbor:

"Just wanted to give you a heads up...the DINGDONGERS are going door to door...
They just left the Smiths and are heading your way!"

Its like a militant neighborhood watch. You can imagine every family sending out orders to other family members:

"Annie! You get in the closet and don't make a peep until I tell you the coast is clear!"

Johnny! You get on the roof with the binoculars. As they approach, signal with three knocks."

"I'll be in the garage waiting. Do NOT-Under any circumstances-Answer the door! Are we clear? Are we clear?!"

"Yes Ma'am."

"Good. Now get to your posts!"

And we wait.

We wait until the two young people with their backpacks walk back down the driveway, down the road to the next house.

Don't they know by now that this has been going on in our homes for years and years?

I wonder: Have they EVER had the door opened and actually CONVINCED the resident to change their beliefs?

Doubt it.

I remember just after I was divorced and living by myself for the first time, I got the call from my neighbor.

"They are in the neighborhood."

Great. Being the newly single mom on the block, I really had no back-up. I was on my own.



"Hi. We were wondering if you had a few minutes to hear about..."

"No. No I don't have a minute." And I did it. I simply closed the door.

The thing was, I felt TERRIBLE. I mean, here these kids were, on a Saturday morning, peddling what most likely were their parents beliefs. I really find it hard to believe this is what two 16 year olds REALLY wanted to be doing. I doubt they think that wearing suspenders and neckties is cool. Maybe I'm wrong, I don't know. But I remember thinking that it would have been better not to have opened the door at all. I vowed I would hide on them forever more.

So over the next few years, I hid. Hiding is not something I do well. Nor do I really feel I SHOULD hide. I am a good person. A good mom, and doggone it, I believe in God. I just don't like DINGDONGERS.

Now, the "typical" peddler isn't as recognizable. Now there are girls. And Grandparent types with kids. How would I know what they wanted if they rang the doorbell?

So recently, something funny happened here at 145 Crazy Road.

It was a sunny Saturday morning. We had been up a little the night before, both kids had colds. Nothing serious...just the typical stuffy-nose-cough that EVERYONE had this past year.

I was in the living room, the kids were downstairs...


Dog barks.

Kids run to the door before I could even look to see who it was.

My husband happened to be home that morning, Thank, um, well...God.

"Tyler!Get upstairs!Kristen take the kids!" Husband ordered in frantic whispers.

"Who is it for Heavens Sake?"

"I don't know, but I think their religious!"

I grabbed both of the kids and put them on the couch, my finger over my lips, eyes wide with pleading panic.

I was curious to see who was at our door, and was surprised to see a young woman getting two kids out of the backseat of her car. Now, any of you that have now or have had young children know what a freaking hassle it is to get two or more kids out of carseats, booster seats, seatbelts, etc..I avoid it at all costs!

But here this woman was, patiently walking up to our door. She couldn't POSSIBLY be doing this for...


"Hi...How are you today?...I hoped to talk with you a bit about Jesus..."

My husband politely interrupted:

"Look, I've been up all night with two sick kids..."

When suddenly both Mackenzie and Tyler bounded from the couch to the top of the stairs, jumping and giggling!

"We're nOt SiCk! DAddY! We'Re NoT SiCk!" They sing-songed, dancing around.

"Mommy! Come see! Daddy! Can they come in?"


My poor husband just stood there. How could he slam the door on a lady with two young kids? After all, he had just fibbed.


So he listened for a minute. She talked about Church, and Parenting, and Jesus.

I was still crouched at my post behind the curtain. Laughing quietly at the kids...oops.

"Thank you but we are all set."

"Would you just take a look at..."

"Nope. We're good. Have a good one!"

I watched her walk back to her car, put both kids back in their seats, toss in her huge bag, and drive right over to our neighbors house. She was going to be at this ALL damned day.

And boy, did I get in trouble!

"You were supposed to hide the kids!"

"I know. Sorry."

Just this weekend I was walking my dog.

Now. When I walk, I WALK. I walk fast. I have those crazy puffy "Shape-Up" sneakers that come with a video to teach you the correct way to walk IN them. When I Walk, I mean business.

I was just about at the top of a hill when I saw an older gentleman and a young(ish) boy walking toward me on the sidewalk.

My dog Casey is very friendly. Most of the time its a good thing. Sometimes.Its.Not.

He walked right up to the men.

"What a great dog! Is it a Golden?"

"Yes." breathebreathesweatalittlebreathe.

"She's beautiful!" The older man gushed. Scratching Casey's ears.

I instictively backed away. Even though he was older, and I could have easily taken down the chubby kid, you never know..

"How often do you walk him/her?"

"Him. I walk him every day."

Then I saw it. THE BIG BAG.


Then out of the blue, the man asked, "Do you believe you will go to heaven?"

Say, What?

He handed me this little blue flyer.

Drat! Now not only do they not LOOK like they used to, but now they approach you on the street!


"Look. My heart rate is coming down. I really have to..."

By now Casey had plunked down in the street and would not get up when I pulled the

"So, DO you believe..."

Flashbacks to all of the times I was forced to hide, or make the call to the neighbors, or get on the roof with binoculars...And I realized how intrusive this was.


A puzzled look washed over his face.

"I am probably NOT going to get to heaven. No way. In fact, I'm pretty sure I am the Captain of the GoingToHell Boat."


"Why do you say that?"

I dragged my dog up and started back on my merry way...

"Well, because I say bad words and think bad thoughts. And I am going to think of more things that I could have said as I continue on with my walk that you interrupted!"

I felt a little sorry. I felt the adrenaline rush that I always feel when in a confrontation. But when words are out, they can't go back in.

I left the two standing there. I didn't look back. I crunched the little blue piece of paper up in my hand.

But I didn't throw it on the ground.

That would be littering.

Littering is bad.

And I plan on going to heaven.

I wonder if there is a doorbell on Heaven's Gate?

Thanks for Reading.

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