Moss, is humor writer from Tennessee. She writes a
weekly human interest column about daily life and the funny
things that happen to everyone.
She has written for the Daily News of Kingsport, Griffin Journal,
Oakridge Now, Atlanta Woman Magazine, Aberdeen Examiner, Angleton
Advocate, and Smyrna AM, a supplement of the Murfreesboro Daily News
Journal. She has been
published by Voyageur Press, McGraw Hill, and the good folks
at Guidepost Books. Her articles have appeared in
numerous anthologies and other publications, both in print and online.
She is a
former board member and past Editor of the Columnists.com, website of the National Society of Newspaper
oldest and largest professional organization
for columnists. She is the Web Editor of
Humorists.com and a founder of the Southern Humorists writers'
organization. She is writer, editor, and webmaster of HumorColumnist.com.
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Online Since 1999
The Sales People
old Spring! The warmer weather seems to have brought out the
solicitors in my neighborhood like the dandelions. I can't
remember ever having so many people selling door-to-door. I don't know
if it is the bad economy, or some other phenomenon that I've not
figured out yet.
Just the other day someone came to the door wanting to sell me new
windows for my house. I have windows, of course, but theirs were some
fancy kind that you can wash from the inside. "Your
neighbor down the street just bought new ones from us," he said.
Keeping up with the Jones' -- the neighbors got new ones so I should
too? "Guess I'll just plug along with the ones I
have." They have been good enough so far. There are
many things I'd rather have for that kind of money than new windows.
New carpeting, for instance.
A couple of my windows are moldy. I think when I had the house
painted that they put back the storm windows before the paint had
fully dried. But, good grief, wood can be cleaned and repainted.
I don't need to replace all the windows in the house over a little
Then yesterday morning someone else banged on the door trying to sell
landscaping. It was 8:30 in the morning. Who in their
right mind would come around doing solicitations at that hour of the
day? Besides, I already have someone that does gardening.
If I were going to plant nursery stock, I would not get it from a
door-to-door sales person that is here today and gone to tomorrow.
Actually, I do need a couple of trees. I lost two trees last
year, trees that had been there for years. I don't know if it
was the hot and dry summer or what happened to them. But I will
have the company that removed the old trees come and replace them.
I've had a hard time keeping trees alive. I need someone to plant
trees that knows what they are doing.
Last night right at suppertime, someone rang the doorbell again.
Can you believe it? It was someone selling windows and home
improvements again. Two solicitors in one day? That's really a bit
much. I still don't need any new windows, thanks.
Actually, I've been thinking about how nice it might be to add a patio
room on the back, but I certainly wasn't going to mention that. I made
the mistake of looking at them once and the company nearly drove me
Attention solicitors: I'll give you a clue on how to get my business.
Don't knock on my door unless I've called you. Don't call me on
the phone unless I ask you to. The way I find people to do work is to
look in the yellow pages and find someone who is bonded, insured, and
has been in business for 20 years or more. If they have been in
business that long, there is usually a reason.
Here is what I want: First of all, be dependable and show up
when you say you will. Do good work that does not have to be redone a
few months later. Charge a fair price. I don't expect
someone to work for nothing, but I hate being overcharged. Don't
try to tell me I need stuff that I do not need, like new windows.
If you had asked me about painting the trim, replacing the broken
storm window, and repainting the molded windows, I might have let you
bid the job. I would still want references since I don't know you,
So, I've put a "No Solicitors" sign on my door before the
guy with the vacuum cleaner arrives. These sales calls are
making me nuts. Leave a brochure in my mailbox, advertise in the
yellow pages, leave a card, or, best of all, don't call me, I'll call
Copyright 2009 Sheila Moss
Nashville, TN 37219
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