discovery – how to get rid of the traveling vacuum salesperson


It was nice out; in the 40’s they say.  The dancer was having an afternoon nap, the grower already awake from his own, and the designer had just returned from a ski day with his brother.  He and the builder were pushing snow from the driveway.  The grower and I were sitting, peacefully sunning. 

A large white suburban drove into our unusually large driveway, the people inside waving.  We waved right on back.  A man hopped out and approached us, carrying a can of Glade freshener.  Just by the spring in his step, we could tell…another salesman.  No, he wasn’t the usual “meat salesman.” 

After the niceties, He asked what kind of vacuum we were using.  The designer looked to me and I explained that it was an Oreck.  They were doing demonstrations for people today.  He would like to vacuum some of our carpet with his Kirby vacuum.  We hesitated.  “It works especially great on stains,” he continued.  I then explained that the dancer was taking a nap in the only room that had a stain.  Though I have never seen the Kirby vacuum, I have no doubt that it is a quality machine.  A quality machine that we don’t need

As he kept talking up the Kirby, that glade bottle swung dangerously in his hand.  All this time he got closer to our front door and carpet.  “Are you sure there isn’t a place I can vacuum for you?”  he asked. 

And then it hit me…a flash of light…”I’d never let you spray that in my house,” I explained.  He paused, stunned. 

“Oh, this is a gift.  The company gives it to us to hand out.  Its an air freshener,” he sheepishly explained, his demeanor completely changed.   

I could tell the magic had already worked.   “We’re sensitive to chemicals and fragrances,” I explained. 

 “Oh,” he replied, “I don’t like it either.”  He was slowly and casually edging backwards. 

“Well, I’m sure you’ll find someone who will like it,  good luck to you.  We just don’t want to waste your time…we’re not interested in another vacuum.  But we wish you the best of luck,” I happily stated. 

But it was just an offer for him to continue his retreat.  He was looking for it anyways.  I think he literally jumped in the suburban and they drove away just as quickly as they had come.  No, they did not stop at any of our neighbor’s homes, on their way to the next street.   Hope no one was looking for a Kirby vacuum or a free Glade freshener today…

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