Deciding Whether To Open Your Wallet Or Slam The Door When A Stranger Calls

When a stranger knocks on your door, it’s almost always someone asking for something rather than someone willing to give you something. So it’s understandable to have a closed-door policy unless you see through the peephole that it’s Ed McMahon. And even if it is Ed McMahon, he’s most likely a zombie rather than a Publishers Clearing House representative because he died last year.

But sometimes it’s a Girl Scout offering you your annual shot at Thin Mints, and once in a while it’s someone from a valid, worthy charity. A post by Revanche at A Gai Shan Life describes an encounter with a newspaper salesman who claimed to be working his way toward a college scholarship. She didn’t like his vibe and sent him on his way, but feels guilty because she can’t be sure he was a con artist.

What’s your acid test for determining whether someone who approaches you for your dough is worth your time?

Scammy scam scam? [A Gai Shan Life]

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  1. eddikat says:

    I don’t accept cold calls, period. I seek out reputable companies for products I know I want.

    • newfenoix says:

      That’s my policy. I will buy NOTHING from a caller or a salesman. If I want what they are selling I will seek them out

    • JHerrick79 says:

      Me too, with only ONE exception: Girl Scouts.

      If they don’t approach my door, I will eventually seek them out at a grocery store, or ask a co-worker who has kids. But if they do approach my door, then they save me that trouble. I will buy from them.

      • MeowMaximus says:

        Sorry, even the Girl Scouts are SOL, because I have friends whose daughters are in the GS, so they have first call on my cookie orders.

      • BHall says:

        Girl scouts wouldn’t be caught dead in my neighborhood; they would be caught alive and then made dead. :)

    • exit 10 says:

      Same here, no cold call sales. Move on because it’s not happing here. A few years back I glued a piece of a broken mirror to the bottom of an outdoor thermometer I have attached to a near by window. When someone rings the bell I can easily see who it is. It works better then the peep hole in the door. I’ve had at least 2-3 try the door knob after I didn’t answer the door. Little did they know I was standing just a few feet away watching. Most just go away.

      • tbax929 says:

        They try to open your door after you don’t answer? I know I’m a little sheltered, but that would scare the crap out of me!

        • catastrophegirl chooses not to fly says:

          that has happened to me too. both times on a sunday morning around 9 am, apartment complex so you can’t see if someone is home by their cars and then they came back a week later, same people, a man and a woman in “nice clothes” [a suit and a floral dress.] in a very southern religious area. so i’m guessing they thought i was at church when they unlocked my deadbolt. still not sure how, the peephole doesn’t have that clear of a view of the lock area.
          fortunately i had a U-bar security lock and although the shove they gave the door loosened the screws on the part of the U-bar that was secured to the frame, it didn’t give and then i shoved the door shut and deadbolted it again. and watched them walk calmly away through the peephole as i called the cops.
          the cops wouldn’t come out since there was no actual ‘breaking and entering’ and the apartment complex wouldn’t change the locks since there was no police report. but they did say it’s a pretty common way for people to check out your schedule, see if you are out of the house at some regular time every day/week so they can break in.
          so glad i don’t live there anymore. and now when people knock on my door and i don’t want to answer, i let them see me twitch the blinds to look out at them so they know someone is watching and alert.

      • Nigerian prince looking for business partner says:

        We get the same thing in our area. People use going door to door for their church or offering to mow yards as a front to see if you’re home.

    • coffeeculture says:

      Same here…closed door policy. I won’t even open the door for my friends unless they call ahead or holler through the door. Same with calls…I only have a cell phone, if you’re not in my address book, you go straight to voice mail. If it’s important, you’ll leave a message.

      Come to think of it, I haven’t encountered a salesman or talked to a telemarketer since the early 2000′s.

    • whitecat says:

      Several years ago I answered the door to an urban development organization. I was skeptical because I’m always getting those bogus “let us reduce your mortgage payment” scams where they get you to inadvertently sign away your house.

      But this group got me over $25,000 of repairs and upgrades to my house, including serious and extensive foundation work, new carpet, new gutters, and a new storm door. In return I have a $10,000 no-interest, no-payment second on my house, which expires a year from now – meaning as long as I own the house until then I pay nothing. As a bonus I also got free lead paint testing, a carbon monoxide detector, and an energy audit

      This organization specializes in keeping low-income owners of older homes in older neighborhoods in their houses. They helped another neighbor with new windows and insulation, and yet another with a new furnace. I am so glad I opened the door to them and let them help me.

  2. oldwiz65 says:

    I’d say it’s who are they collecting money for and how do they want to take your contribution. If I’ve never heard of the group, they get nothing. If they want cash they get nothing. Being retired and home during the day now and then, I do encounter them from time to time. However, our town requires solicitors to register for a permit, which probably cuts down on the numbers. We do get school kids selling magazine subscriptions, but while it’s perhaps worthy, I don’t subscribe to magazines any more. I get more semi-scams like people offering to re-coat the driveway than people trying to collect for charity.

  3. jivesukka says:

    I don’t donate to a group unless I know what they stand for period.

    If it is someone selling a product and they are having a deal, I always ask if I can order from them in a week or so over the phone. If they say no, the deal is today only, then I say no thank you.

    No one has ever said I could order in a week over the phone. I actually had one guy pull his business card out of my hand and say ‘If you are going to be like that, then I am leaving.’

    • dragonfire81 says:

      What about when they come to where you WORK? I’ve had numerous incidents at multiple jobs with various kinds of cold call solicitors. In one instance a guy came in and tried to sell me some cleaning product, even used my store’s front door to do a demo of it. He gave me a price list and asked “how much can I put you down for?”. I explained to him that I do not handle supply sales, he’d have to get in touch with someone else for that and asked him if he could leave a business card or a phone number I could pass along. He said he couldn’t. I told him politely to leave and not come back.

      • Azzizzi says:

        That reminds me of a guy who used to call my work and say he was sending another shipment, but he needed to know if we needed one case or two this time. I guess people will usually say, “What do we normally get?” and he’ll say, “Two.” and then two cases of whatever he’s selling will show up.

        I had one of these guys who was selling some kind of business directory (a lot like the book of poems you can get with your own poem in it). After I said “no,” the damned thing still showed up. Next, this place changed its name and the same guy called me back and asked me if I was ready for my new edition. We got in an argument over it and he accidentally admitted to being the same guy with the same company.

      • TheGreySpectre says:

        My work has security at all entrances, solicitors are not permitted and would not be able to get a badge to come in in the first place. Whenever someone calls that seems suspicious we are instructed to refer them to the security phone number.

      • 99 1/2 Days says:

        Hate those. I had a fellow come in and try to sell me furniture off a semi. Dude, I’m working. Seriously?

    • MyTQuinn says:

      Please, please… tell us what you said to offend the guy. Then we can all say it and get on with our lives. :)

  4. Ceric Neesh says:

    Girl scouts always get my money, as do the Boy Scouts. Grew up in the BSA, love their popcorn.

    Anyone else will find me trying to make them WANT to walk away.

    • There's room to move as a fry cook says:

      Girl Scouts don’t even go door to door anymore. They stay under the watchful eyes of adults & solicit outside Walmart.

      • Kitamura says:

        Might depend on the area, I know some groups that still come around door to door. But you have to admit, door to door is a ridiculous waste of time unless people already know you’re coming.

      • JHerrick79 says:

        When I was in Girl Scouts, I went door-to-door, but only to neighbors that my family knew. They didn’t have to be close friends, but they had to at least be acquaintances. Also, my Mom was never far away, usually at the nearest corner of the block.

    • goldgecko4 says:

      Naw… BSA is persona-non-grata with me. I can’t buy from or donate to an organization with such virulent discrimination written into their policies.

      • Anonymously says:

        Or you could just support the children that are involved. Or if you’re really determined to “stick it to the man”, at least consider donating to Learning for Life, which is a non-discriminating subsidiary of BSA.

        • Rectilinear Propagation says:

          Or if you’re really determined to “stick it to the man”

          You really think mocking a legitimate complaint is going to convince someone to do what you want?

      • JulesNoctambule says:

        I also won’t support BSA. Sorry, kids — I know you’re probably learning great stuff and useful skills, but the grown-ups in charge have ruined your organization for a lot of other grown-ups (and other kids, too).

        • Anonymously says:

          Quite frankly, the organization is all about children…especially Cub Scouts. Why does it really matter if it’s “ruined” for adults? Please convince me what is so egregious about BSA that the entire organization is ruined despite the tremendous good it does. To use a common idiom, why is this not merely “Throwing the baby out with the bathwater”?

          • whitecat says:

            The BSA practices homophobia and religious bigotry – their policies prohibit membership to atheists and agnostics and leadership positions to gays. Which I guess is fine if you want your child to learn to hate gays and atheists.

            By contrast, the Girl Scouts practice inclusion and diversity, which got them accused of being training camps for lesbian baby-killing atheists by a Republican politician in Washington state.

            I was a Girl Scout, but sadly, I never earned a lesbian baby-killing atheist badge.

      • HogwartsProfessor says:

        Me either, although I will buy GS cookies because I was one and sold them and I know how much it sucks and how good the cookies are.

        They don’t really go door-to-door anymore. I get mine from someone at work.

      • Gail says:

        I feel the same way, but then the cute little neighbor kid showed up selling wreaths… *sigh*

  5. There's room to move as a fry cook says:

    I have a “No Soliciting of Any Kind” sign on the front door. It stops everyone except the Jehovah Witnesses.

    • ospreyguy says:

      I use to keep a print out of the definition of solicitation next to my front door that had a no soliciting sign. When the Witness’ or the mormon’s, or who ever cam knocking I said “I don’t allow solicitation.” Where they would respond with “Oh I’m not selling anything!” I then handed the paper to them and shut the door.

      solicit – make a solicitation or entreaty for something; request urgently or persistently; “Henry IV solicited the Pope for a divorce”; “My neighbor keeps soliciting money for different charities”

      It has nothing to do with selling something. Idiots.

      • raybury says:

        The Watchtower employs enough lawyers so they know the legal (not dictionary) definition. Of course if the individuals are arrested and charges are pressed, the organization will probably let them twist in the wind.

        Just ask them how many generations are in a generation. (They recently revised their End Times numerology such that a generation such that their “generation” spans from person A who saw event X when they were very young to person B who met person A when A was very old. NOT KIDDING.)

    • babyruthless says:

      Recently the Witnesses came by my door. I was home alone with my two labradors. Seeing as how I was having a hard time holding them back, the Witnesses left hardly a word.

    • AngryK9 says:

      Just tell them you’re a Satan worshipper. It worked for me.

      • dpeters11 says:

        I have been told that you can tell them you are disfellowshipped, apparently they can’t talk to someone that was basically kicked out. Haven’t tried it though.

    • Nighthawke says:

      Had two of them visit because I forgot to shut the gate. They asked me if I had read the bible lately. I chimed up “yeah, great book of history ain’t it.” That put a little stutter in their spiel and I managed to get in a word sideways regarding solicitors, then sent them on their way.

      All it takes is remembering those two knotheads to go close and secure the gate.

      I wonder if they even read The Watchtower in the full, unabridged version. I think they would lose more than a few if they did so.

    • human_shield says:

      Witnesses are an odd bunch. I saw some running after people in a grocery store parking lot the other day. I can’t imagine who would have their religious views changed by a guy loitering in a parking lot, but I guess it works.

    • leprofie says:

      When I was in training for a door to door sales job, they told us to always go to the places that had a no soliciting sign. They said that usually it was put up by people who have a hard time saying no to the pitch. If you could get the door open, you likely had a sale.

      • shepd says:

        Either that or its me. That’s trespassing with notice and I’ll phone the cops quietly on my cellphone while I keep you waiting. (Don’t have the sign on my door yet, but it will be coming!)

    • cybrczch says:

      LOL when I was a poor college student I was approached at a shopping mall by a young man affiliated with the Rev. Moon – because I was young and naive, and he was kind of cute, I did leave with a small booklet he was handing out (but not his phone number, sigh…). I kept it in my bookshelf – some sort of diversity in reading I told myself, even though I never read it.

      Fast forward to me living at my own duplex, very early Saturday morning after a long night of working. BAM BAM BAM the knock on door, I must have made some noise because it kept happening, I went and answered it, and it was a mountain of a woman, in a floral tent, er, dress, with a couple of little ones in tow. She stared down at me and thrust a copy of the Watchtower in front of me saying “Would you like some of our literature?” In a flash of inspiration, I smiled and said “Sure, would you like some of my literature?”, while reaching over to the bookshelf and procuring the booklet to show her. You would have thought I was cursing a blue streak in front of the little ones, the way her face went bright red and puffed up in religious indignity, then she turned sharply (whip snapping the string of kids in her other hand), and stormed off my property.

    • Toffeemama is looking for a few good Otters says:

      Yeah, I’m pretty sure they don’t know what they believe anymore. I had two pairs of Jehovah’s Witnesses come to my house last week. I’m pretty bad about staying to talk to them though. I think next time, I’ll offer to start witnessing to them. My father-in-law does that, and tells me that gets them to scram pretty quickly.

    • misterguch says:

      When I was in grad school I had a couple of the Witnesses come to my door during the day. It was Spring Break and I was home sick with the chicken pox, so when they answered the door they were treated to the sight of a shirtless, oily man chain smoking cigarettes yelling “WHAT?” They handed me a copy of the Watchtower and left without saying a word.

    • VaultDweller says:

      I was actually walking down the street in town when two men literally ran out at me from behind a white van… scared the daylights out of me. They were both wearing black dress slacks and white short-sleeve button downs. One of them stood in front of me while the other stood a little in back, I seriously thought I was about to be kidnapped in broad daylight off the street in Bergen county, NJ. Then the one in front of me started talking about biblical scripture for women or some such nonsense. I told them “do you really think chasing women down the street from behind your van is the best way to accomplish your mission?!” They didn’t say much after that, but good lord, they should think about strategy.

  6. misterfuss says:

    I support the neighborhood kids when they come around for fund raising, but rarely strangers that come knocking at my door. I guess I am wary of id theft and other scams.

    • JHerrick79 says:

      When I was in Girl Scouts, I went door-to-door, but only to neighbors that my family knew. They didn’t have to be close friends, but they had to at least be acquaintances. Also, my Mom was never far away, usually at the nearest corner of the block.

  7. htowninsomniac says:

    It’s not necessarily a scam, you may get the magazines or newspapers, but the stories are almost always made up. The kids are driven in vans from city to city, and they only get paid some money for food. Most of their earnings are kept on a ledger and is probably never paid out. If they don’t sell enough subscriptions, they even lose money.

    I feel bad for the kids, but buying subscriptions from them doesn’t really help them. It’s not a way out for them.

    See this story from the Houston Press: http://bit.ly/4wFTK1

  8. lovemypets00 - You'll need to forgive me, my social filter has cracked. says:

    Sorry, I don’t give donations at the door to anyone except our local fire department. Doesn’t matter who you are or what your sob story is. Other donations are given to our local Salvation Army. And I buy Girl Scout cookies. That’s it.

    I broke my own rule last year, at Christmas, and sent a check to a charity mentioned at church, and they must have sold my name. This year, I received solicitations in the mail from other organizations, including SPCA’s in other states. I’ve had to call and have my name removed from lists.

    Now it’s back to cash donations to local folks.

    • Bob Lu says:

      Legit charities are allow to share their donors’ info with other legit charities. For me, I set a specific quota for charities each month. So if charity A share my info with Charity B, and I donate to B, A will not get my money for a while.

      I wish if more people do so, it will teach the charities that when you share your donors’ info, you are practically giving your money away, so you better be careful and only share such info with those who really share the same ideal with you.

    • JHerrick79 says:

      Beware of fake organizations pretending to represent the fire department. I get calls from half a dozen different organizations all with legit-sounding names all claiming to support local fire and police (Firefighter Family Support, Police Foundation, Firefighters Charitable Foundation, etc). I don’t know who to believe anymore or where that money is going.

      Supporting your local fire department is a noble thing to do, but make sure you know the money goes directly to them.

  9. Brie says:

    This was in my broketastic twenties. Knock on my door, I open it, it’s a kid selling mediocre chocolate for such and such organization. I tell him I have no money. I must’ve also said something like “I don’t get paid for two weeks” because this 12-year-old then advised me he’d be happy to take a postdated check. Bzzt.

    These days my litmus test is the sales call being couched in “it would really help me out if…” If it’s a stranger or a suburban FOAF with an MLM the answer is no. If it’s my nephew trombonist selling tchotckes for the marching band I pass on the schlock and write a check to the band.

  10. RobofNYC says:

    I was one of ‘those’ saving for college. Out of a group of 15 that were there that morning, I was the only that was going to college (next year). But, my parents were paying for my education, not this “job”.

    To begin, we spent time on getting them to listen. Don’t start out your selling anything, start out by lying and say this is a survey (I doubt they are still allowed to do that). If a person says I don’t want to buy anything, you say I am not selling anything.

    I hope the “crews” are different now. I met some of the slimiest characters. My folks had my quit by the middle of the week when I told them what was going on.

    Are there some that are honest, probably. But are they many, many that have will say anything to make sale – yes – and I believe they are the majority.

    Besides, who gets a newspaper anymore?

    • abberz3589 says:

      I had some kids do this to me a few times since I’ve been in college. The first time, my roommates and I fell for it (it was a really sweet kid, and we thought it was helping him, so we split like a 30 dollar subscription), but after that we just said no.
      One time though, they do that “I’m just doing a survey” thing, and then they start the pitch, so I said no, and the guy looked like he was going to kick my ass and I actually got scared, so I had to call the cops.

      • Willie Derp says:

        Yeah, it’s almost comical how quick they go from “Hey, can you help me out…” to surly once they realize you’re not going to cave and buy anything.

  11. Noadi says:

    The funny thing is this scam is so old there’s an episode of Dragnet from the 60s on it. Same stories too, one of the ones in the episode was a girl saying she was a nursing student. This story immediately reminded me of it since I was just watching episodes of Dragnet on Netflix a few weeks ago.

    I’ve yet to have anyone come door to door here, which I’m very happy about. I don’t give to charities on a whim so anyone going door to door would be disappointed, even Girl Scouts because as long as my little cousin is in Girl Scouts I’ll be getting my cookies from her.

    • oldgraygeek says:

      The story you saw 50 years ago was true… The names have been changed to protect the innocent.

      • nybiker says:

        Just the facts, ma’am.
        Book ‘em Dano. (ok, sorry, another great classic tv show – and yes, I’ve watched the reboot, not so bad).
        And, lastly, Let’s be safe out there (I think that’s the correct phrasing, I didn’t watch the show too often).
        /a fan of the good tv shows (whether I watched them or not).

  12. Mudilo says:

    I can’t imagine wanting to deal with something of that nature. Luckily I live on a dirt road, that a lot of people assume is a private road.
    I would imagine that my dog would start barking, so I can be like “I would love to talk to you, but my dog is upset, so please leave, so that he settles down.” Little would these sharks of capitalism know, my dog will STFU and lay down upon command almost instantly, but he has kept plenty of creepy weirdos away in the past by this use of “delayed obedience.”

  13. perfectly_cromulent says:

    Research who they say they are with. If it looks even a little suspicious, don’t do it! If they turn out to be legit, you can easily donate if you want. I work in a bank fraud dept, and I don’t know how many times I hear, “well, i didn’t think to check them out until AFTER I gave them my card number!”

  14. Mudilo says:

    Also, I don’t think the woman referenced in the story should feel any guilt- there are plenty of jobs where you don’t have to do something as odd, as going door to door.

  15. bfwebster says:

    When we lived in Washington DC, we used to get a slow but steady stream of door-to-door solicitors who were either trying to raise money for liberal causes or “selling magazines”. I never bought any magazines, and after I gave once to a liberal cause collector, I was so pestered by follow-up visits, phone calls, and mail that I never did so again. On the other hand, it was a door-to-door person selling firewood out of the back of his truck who became our regular firewood supplier.

    We now live in semi-rural Colorado, where our driveway is about 150 yards long and all up hill. The only folks who come to see us are the occasional Jehovah’s Witnesses (who drive up), and I usually invite them in out of sympathy (I spent two years as a Mormon missionary knocking on doors down in Central America). ..bruce..

    • webweazel says:

      “On the other hand, it was a door-to-door person selling firewood out of the back of his truck who became our regular firewood supplier. “
      These are the only people I like. Locals passing out business cards and chatting, to hopefully get the word out about their business, and that maybe you’ll think of them in the future.
      Anybody else who is selling something “right now” gets a swift kick to the curb. Except for Girl Scouts. YUM.

  16. BaronYiffington says:

    My first experience with this kind of stuff was two years ago, when someone was trying to sell me magazine subscriptions to help with their college fund.

    They got me listening by telling me I would get three free issues of each of the four magazines I picked… but there was a catch, as usual.

    We talked for a bit, I picked four magazines. She wrote down my order, then told me the total was going to be 130$!

    I told her there was no way I would possibly be paying 130$ for magazines, and asked what happened to the free ones. NOW, she informs me, I have to pay for a full year, and then get three free ones AFTER my subscription runs out. I, nicely, explain that I can’t possibly afford 130$ just for magazines I didn’t really want. What does she do?

    She asks if I’m “420 friendly” and if I want to smoke a bowl with her. She seriously thought that she could get me stoned to help nudge me towards buying magazines.

    • Erich says:

      Did it work?

    • lucky13 says:

      What Erich asked – inquiring minds want to know!

      I have to admit that I’ve been tempted to make innapropriate counter-offers to some of those young ladies selling magazines in the past but orange is sooo not my color.

    • crazydavythe1st says:

      This sounds like a scam. In fact, there was an article about on here a couple of years ago about it. Basically, their sales “handlers” often supply these people with drugs to keep them selling magazines. Out of that $130, they MAY get around $5 or so, plus drugs. Their “handlers” keep the rest, and may or may not actually order the magazines.

  17. Crail00 says:

    In our city, door to door “sales people” are required to have a license. It is my habit to ask to see it; and in doing that, I refer to a license for the neighboring larger city which has a boundary next to ours. More often than not, they say “yes”; then I tell them they are in the wrong city. My bad.

  18. MaxH42 thinks RecordStoreToughGuy got a raw deal says:

    Unless I actually recognize them from our neighborhood, I may not answer the door, or if I do I’ll say “Sorry, we don’t do business at the door, but if you have any information you can leave, I’ll take a look at it.” That goes for sales and charity calls, and if it’s political I only have to drop the part of the sentence before the word “if”.

  19. Turcicus says:

    It’s as simple as this: if I’m not expecting anyone and I don’t recognize you, I don’t open the door. Period. Same goes for the phone. If I’m not expecting a call and I don’t recognize the number, I don’t pick up.

    • libertysubvian says:

      I have to agree. As a single woman who lives alone in a large urban center, if i don’t recognize you through the peephole, I’m not answering the door!

  20. Blow a fuse? I can fix that... says:

    If you approach me for money, you get nothing. I don’t buy from door-to-door or phone salesmen, nor do I answer questionnaires, or give any information beyond “not interested”.

    I also don’t give to beggars, no matter what shape they take, including “street musicians”, charities (real or fake) collecting on street corners, nor do I buy from “temporary” on-street stalls.

    Yes. I AM the grinch.

  21. TinaBringMeTheAx says:

    I buy stuff from the kids in my apartment building. They have school sponsored cookie and candy sales a few times a year.

    Every once in a while some clean cut young Jehovah’s Witness will stop by and will I will inform them that I am a homosexual atheist and offer to convert them. They politely decline.

    • Kate says:

      I gotta remember that response. Mostly the only people we get bothered with are the religious whackos, some towing kids yet. We also get the annual farm census people who apparently need to know how many chickens we own – they are always nice funny people who are a nice chat before they go on.

  22. oldtaku says:

    This one’s easy – all those door to door magazine and candy salesmen are scams. They’re driven in kidnap vans from unsuspecting neighborhood to unsuspecting neighborhood. I don’t think anyone legit goes door to door anymore because they think it’s just too dangerous.

  23. TasteyCat says:

    Don’t try to sell me something. I’m not buying. I will not sign your lists, I will not buy your baked goods, I will not have you add a dollar to my bill at a restaurant, I will not give to your charity.

    If I want to donate to a worthy cause, I will go online and research it. Anyone who knocks on my door or blocks my way as I enter a grocery store is getting nothing.

  24. bcsus83 says:

    If they come to my door unsolicited, they get nothing from me, period. If I want girl scout cookies, I’ll get them from every girlscout in front of every grocery store in town.

    • Snaptastic says:

      Ditto. I have a no soliciting signs on my door because storm-chasing out of town roofers would knock and claim that they weren’t soliciting. Since they were fibbing to my face, I wouldn’t trust them period.

      My new second sign (placed on the center of the door) asks for 2 forms of photo IDs, birthdate, address and so on and states that I will run background checks, check their criminal history, then pester them at their own home. That one seems to work on the solicitors and amuse everyone else.

  25. yessongs says:

    It doesn’t help when the local schools have a new fundraiser each week. Most of mine are kids as young as 8 knocking on doors selling overpriced junk. If I don’t even want it from my own kids why would I want it from someone else s kids. Why do schools make our kids into sales people anyway? I refuse to let my kids go door to door selling junk. If they want the prize that they can win I could buy it for them cheaper and safer than hawking junk. Schools stop using our kids as a way to get money because the districts cut your budget.

    • JHerrick79 says:

      If I buy a $15 trinket that I don’t want/need from one of those kids thinking that I’m supporting their school, the school probably gets $3 at most from that sale.

      I’d rather just give my $15 directly to the school.

      Do you hear me schools?? Give me that option when you send your kids out on fundraisers.

      • shepd says:

        Then they couldn’t give the children money/gifts for selling stuff…

        • Oddfool says:

          They could take the money the kid raised, say 1 out of every 15 or so, and buy the kid something. $14 out of $15 to the school is much better than $3 out of $15 going to the school.

    • Mercutio_Jones says:

      My city does not allow students to go door to door without a parent. About 25 years ago, a little girl was abducted and killed doing a school fundraiser.

  26. humphrmi says:

    “And even if it is Ed McMahon, he’s most likely a zombie rather than a Publishers Clearing House representative because he died last year.”

    Also because Ed McMahon never worked for Publishers Clearing House, he pitched for American Family Publishers.

  27. duncanblackthorne says:

    If it’s someone I don’t know, I don’t answer the door. If it’s valid and important, they can leave a note with a way to contact them.

  28. oldgraygeek says:

    I listen to them explain why they are there… for about ten seconds.

    If it’s a business, I tell them “we will NEVER do business with your company because you knocked on our door today.” If they represent Jesus, I ask them why they think I’m too stupid to figure out my own relationship with Him. If they’re Republicans, I teach them a few new scatological references.
    Then, no matter who they represent, I tell them in no uncertain terms to get off my property, that I will retain our security video of their visit, and that I will have them arrested for harrassment and defiant trespass if they ever return.

    • BorkBorkBork says:

      Wow, someone spit in your Raisin Bran this morning?

      • theduckay says:

        I’m pretty sure we all have the same bitter attitude towards door-to-door solicitors. Although I’m assuming you greet them warmly and invite them in for some tea and cookies?

        • BorkBorkBork says:

          Even if they’re scummy salespeople, they are still human beings. Barring someone who creeps me out, everyone who comes to my door gets a few moments to explain themselves. Be it door-to-door salespeople, religious types, etc. If I’m not interested, I tell them so and ask them not to return. So far, I’ve never had a problem with it.

          Having spent two years of my own life as a Mormon missionary in Argentina, I know what it’s like to be on the other side. If someone told me, “No, and please don’t come back,” I wouldn’t come back. That’s all it took. No need to be a jerk about it.

          It just seems that most responses on this story are incredibly passive aggressive, or just plain aggressive.

          • oldgraygeek says:

            Mormon missionary…
            So, I guess people are too stupid to figure out their religion without your help?

        • Duke_Newcombe-Making children and adults as fat as pigs says:

          Nope. He just probably isn’t a complete and unmitigated ass to them, that’s all.

          I share in his sorrow at the pissy attitude of some posters here, especially when we’re talking religious door-to-door proselytizing. What the hell ever happened to “no, thank you”, and a door shut?

  29. donovanr says:

    I have a simple policy. You contact me for business or charity and you won’t get my business. Flyers, door to door, and especial calling me. If your business is so good a friend will tell me all about it.

  30. Munchie says:

    I will never give money on a cold sale

  31. AngryK9 says:

    If it doesn’t feel right, it probably isn’t.

  32. kostia says:

    After the first time I say no, thanks, I’m not interested, if they go away politely, I know they’re legit. It has never happened.

    • Snaptastic says:

      I hate it when I try to be polite and tell them I am not interested, but they keep on badgering. I don’t get how any business can think that if they just badger a person enough, they will suddenly become interested and buy.

      • ludwigk says:

        It’s a form of compliance through exhaustion. The scary part is that it REALLY REALLY works. It’s consistent enough that it appears in many different categories of sales techniques. Do you know why it takes the “finance guys” hours to finalize your car paperwork when you go to buy a car? It’s to wear you down, so that you’ll accede to getting more stuff with your car. It’s the same principle, although with the roles switched because people at a car lot are motivated buyers, and these door-to-door’ers are approaching you cold.

  33. TonyK says:

    No one who comes to our door, save for delivery people, get anything out of us. Same goes for telephone solicitors.

  34. Gulliver says:

    I tell them all they can leave me information and I will gladly research to see if it is something I am interested in. Since they are paid a commission they rarely leave anything behind. I will never give a dollar to the Salvation Army, Boy Scouts or the Red Cross. I tell them as long as they discriminate, I can not contribute to them.

    • psm321 says:

      How does the Red Cross discriminate? (curious)

      • shepd says:

        The Red Cross will not permit gays who test clean to donate blood, even 30 years after their last “encounter” (This is the case in Canada, and they fought it strongly enough to get a supreme court ruling in their favour).

  35. Japheaux says:

    You even have to watch the kids you do know. I had one neighborhood kid come by collecting from his school for some local family who suffered a loss when their ‘house burned down.’ I really did not have cash when the kid came by and told him I’d donate the next day. In the mean time, I called the school asking for more info about the family in trouble. It was a scam and the school called both police and kid’s folks. Geez, ya think you know the kids in the neighborhood pretty well. I would agree with the readers who live by the credo of remaining vigilant.

    • MeOhMy says:

      LOL…this happened to my wife once…a couple neighborhood kids “sold” her some pamphlets for $1…they said they were raising money for a club at their school.

      A couple hours later there was another knock…same kids, this time with their parents standing behind them, while they returned the $1 and apologized for lying! haha!

  36. FrankReality says:

    I rarely get solicitors out in the country where I live. About five years ago some JWs stopped by, so I picked up one of our farm kittens and tried to get them to take her. I was busting up inside laughing, but played it straight deadpan with unrelenting persistence. They never got a chance to start their spiel. I wish I had it on tape for America Funniest Videos – it was a hoot.

    I had the problem with phone calls – 95%+ of the phone calls on my landline were either charities, salesmen or solicitors and in the recent months, political campaigns. So I just quit answering it. Anyone who knows me and needs to get in touch knows my cell phone anyway and calls there. To the landline has become a wastebasket for spam calls.

  37. Dr.Wang says:

    You don’t have to answer the door if it’s a stranger. Just look then walk away from the door. Don’t answer the door or phone to strangers. You do not owe them anything.

    The last guy at my door wanted to speak with me, when I yelled through the door, what do you want?! He mumbled something back so I could not hear what he said forcing me to open the door to hear him. I simply walked away never opening it.

    Remember, 90% of door to door people are scammers and 100% of telemarketers are thieves and liars. The only winning move is not to play.

    • There's room to move as a fry cook says:

      +1

    • rpm773 says:

      It’s this line of thinking that had me wondering why Verizon decided to push FIOS in our area by sending out a bunch of contract salespeople to go door to door. Some would even ring our bell after dark.

  38. White Scorpion says:

    Get one of these to deter religious zealots.
    http://tinypic.com/r/34ee35f/7

  39. Extractor says:

    Considering how much the girl scout gets per box and schools get from each scammy magazine, I just give them $5 or $10 directly. I just got the magazine request from a patient indicating that 40 cents per subscription will go to the school. $5 is like selling over 12 subscriptions. The magazines are overpriced and I’m allergic to most of those crummy cookies.
    The last time I opened the door for one of these, I just about scared them away just from the expression I had without even saying a word. Pissed off, WTF, why did you even bother wasting my time look.

  40. dgm says:

    Anyone who approaches my home unsolicited is suspect. If I wanted to give you money, you would have been invited here.

  41. laughingisfree says:

    I enjoy a good staring contest when I answer the door to a stranger. They either stare back at my eyes or my gun on my hip. I never say a single word and they usually leave me alone.

  42. Ducatisti says:

    Why in the heck does anyone give door-to-door solicitors even a minute of their time?

    Back in the “good old days” when stores were miles away, and the only catalog you got was from Sears, door-to-door sales were a blessing. But, last time I checked, we’re a bit more advanced, and even if you don’t have the internet, you still have a phone book, television, mail ads, brick-and-mortar stores, and best of all, friends referrals to decide who and where to spend your hard earned money.

    If a company has to resort to door-to-door sales, they are counting on complete imbeciles for customers. If you buy from them (or give money to their causes), you’ve just branded yourself an idiot.

  43. kalaratri says:

    If they are obnoxious knocking enough that I’m annoyed enough to answer the door, I take their picture though the window and then I demand their solicitor’s license from behind the door. If they don’t have it, I report them to the county. Otherwise I just tell them I’m not interested. I hate people knocking on my door if I don’t know them.

    The only people who ever get money from me when they come to the door is the fire department because the sweet elderly man showed me his license before I even asked for it, was extremely polite and non-pushy and their ambulance service is free for people who can’t afford it. I can afford to donate, so I do.

  44. STrRedWolf says:

    1. If it’s to your home’s front door, turn ‘em away.

    9 times out of 10 they’re door-to-door salesmen who are trying to drum up biz. The 10th is some religious nutcase promoting some flavor of the month tangent to regular religions (and a few odd ones to boot).

    Girl Scouts get you at work or at shopping areas, like Staples. Those require building permissions or it’s a co-worker. In other words, tracable.

    2. If it’s over the phone, get their info, and turn ‘em away for violating Do Not Call laws — if you put your number in there.

    3. If it’s a bum asking for change, turn ‘em away.

    For me, I tell the truth: I’m from a state government agency. We’re still running a deficit. Since they’re broke, I’m broke.

    • Alvis says:

      And someone from a flavor-of-the-month religion is less of a nutcase than someone from a “regular” religion? Six of one…

  45. OnePumpChump says:

    Ask questions. Specific questions, to which you know all the possible answers. If they don’t give a plausible answer matching their story (for example: “what high school do you attend?”), give them nothing.

    Alternately, you can also take a look at their paperwork and google any corporate names you see on it. Takes seconds. (“Excuse me a moment, be right back.”)

    Another line I’ve seen both times I’ve come across the magazine crews is the “your neighbors said you were really nice” line. Probably works on people who are actually really nice.

  46. biggeek says:

    If someone knocks on my door unsolicited, security gets a call. There’s a reason I pay to live in a nice building that takes three dongle-required security locks to get to my front door.

  47. The Marionette says:

    It depends on the solicitor on the way I react to them. I’ve had a couple of them who claimed to be collecting for some sort of local charity. Seeing as I’ve never heard of any of them I would simply say “Oh that’s good, well since it’s local I could go down there myself and see what I’m donating to.” Of course they woiuld say they’re not allowed to do that, etc, which I then reply with “Hmm, that’s odd, I’m allowed to donate money that I’ve worked for to a charity that I’ve never heard of, yet I’m not at least allowed to look at the place which it’s going to?” Usually if I’m really busy I’ll just close the door and leave it as that. I see it this way, if they’re a legit charity, I’m sure they will get their blessings, etc, etc, but with times the way they are right now there are some hungry people out there, and i’m not talking about ones from the real charities. There are the ones who are hungry enough to try to scam someone out of their hard-earned money. Put it this way, I’ll sleep a lot easier knowing that I MAY have turned down a real charity who will get money from someone else, than knowing I gave some fiend my money. Besides, if i did turn down a real charity by chance and found out it was legit then I’d be more than happy to donate after.

  48. mbz32190 says:

    If I’m not expecting a delivery or something of that nature, I do not answer the door. I donate to charities by a check in the mail or an online donation…I don’t give my money to complete strangers. And yes, I ignore the Girl Scouts/Magazine/candy/poltical/jesus freaks knocking on my door. If you do not acknowledge them, they will move on. I made a mistake of requesting information from a scammy window replacement company that was going around door-to-door and for months I would have people at my door, phone calls, and mailings. After that, no more.

  49. DrLumen says:

    Occasionally I’ll open the door if I’m expecting someone or Fedex. Once was a kid selling candy bars for $9. I think he may have been padding the price as they were the usual $2-$3 candy boxes. No cash on hand. No sale!

    The last time was a woman trying to drum up business for some local BS Cash4Gold company. She didn’t even speak english. I’m really surprised she even tried that crap. Luckily all it took was to shake my head no for her to leave.

    No JW but a few Mormons. It’s really hard not to get adversarial when I believe someone is really trying to hand me a load… No offense to Mormons but that is one religion that would require way too much faith from me.

  50. Guva says:

    At my age I don’t put up with door to door anything. Before they say anything, I just say Sorry, not interested and close the door. Of late with all the political survey phone calls , when they ask to speak to a registered voter, I just tell them they are all dead and hang up. I don’t get return calls any more (smile). if it’s kids selling something, i tell them I only buy stuff from my grandkids (which is true). If it’s a religious couple, I tell them “God told me you were coming today and SHE said to tell you SHE appreciates your efforts but you are mistaken” and then close the door leaving them speechless!!!

  51. jp7570-1 says:

    These days, it just is not safe to trust anyone that comes knocking on your door – even if it appears to be a legitimate charity. As for Girl Scout cookies, there are enough opportunities in my office and even in front of the grocery store (where they always set up a card table to ambush every shopper).

    Even the Fuller Brush Man and the Avon Lady don’t come a-knockin’ anymore. Everyone should adopt a closed-door policy and give to those charities that you know and trust through other means.

  52. Not Given says:

    I’m seriously considering a no trespassing sign in the front yard.

  53. RevancheRM says:

    Just came here to say I am not that Revanche.

  54. Admiral_John says:

    I have a “No Solicitors” sign on my door… below it it says various things like “we already found God” and “we don’t want a free estimate”. After a few of these it says on the bottom “If you don’t know us, go away.”

    Our neighbor’s daughter is the only person who we allow to approach us to buy stuff, since she’s always participating in some fundraiser for school, it seems.

  55. kylere1 says:

    When I hear a knock on my door I did not expect I usually follow the steps below;

    A. Check my phone to make sure I did not miss a call
    B. If I feel like it, I will glance out to see if I know the person
    A. If it is someone I have known more than a decade I will occasionally answer
    B. If someone I do not know, I sit back down
    C. Ignore them and keep doing as I was

    No one calling me (other than my wife) really has any right to expect me to answer the phone, no one visiting unannounced is a visitor, they are a pest. My daughters always want to answer it, and I tell them that anyone worth talking to would ask to come over before they did.

  56. tanyaandkarl says:

    We had some prosletyzers come by over the weekend.
    Really, we’re not interested, but don’t want to be rude.

    I listened to their introductory patter–clearly a memorized spiel they’d run through many times before–and when it was my turn to speak, I said:
    I appreciate you’re doing work you feel is very important.
    I am not interested. Please get off of my property and don’t come back.

    With the last batch, my wife gave them a polite “some other time”
    The next week there they were–”You said you’d go with us to our church some other time. It’s some other time; here we are!”
    Some people CHOOSE not to take a hint.

    If “we are not interested, please go away and don’t come back” doesn’t work, I have some even less polite comments ready.
    The trick to being an a**hole is to be just enough of an a**hole to get the job done.

  57. barty says:

    I’ll never buy anything sight unseen, so it continues to amaze me why companies, particularly legitimate ones, still bother paying people to do cold calling?

  58. Jubes says:

    The last time someone came to the door, I was in my sweats and was busy cooking dinner. I answered, and it was a kid asking if I wanted my lawn cut. I noticed his dad standing outside of their truck with a lawnmower in the back. i just said “No thanks!” and closed the door. I made a comment to my boyfriend about some man making his kid go door to door for $10, thinking it was weird.

    A few nights later my boyfriend called from work and asked me if I remembered the kid, saying he was upset that I “slammed the door” in his face. Turns out, it was a coworker of his just joking around after they had done some lawn work at his mom’s who lives in our area. Now they joke that I hate kids lol

  59. JulesNoctambule says:

    When the spouse and I moved in to our house, we had some witness-religious folks come by; not sure which branch. Instead of being abrasive or toying with them, I had the idea to use some of the general teachings of those groups to my benefit. I said my husband wasn’t home (though he was, just out of sight), and surely it would be inappropriate for a married woman to be alone with two young men in the house — and it worked! One of them blushed so hard I thought he was going to pass out and they apologized profusely. Now whenever they go down our street, they always skip our house.

  60. shepd says:

    It’s simple, you just need to have a house rule that you don’t buy anything from someone on the phone or at the door. You may take information to consider for later, but you never let them inside (if they’re selling something). Doesn’t matter if it’s for donations, or anything else. Except girl guide cookies.

    Every time my wife has given in to one of these scumbags she’s always felt ripped off and I have to use the cooling off period law to undo her mistakes. Although, she’s now at the point where it happens just once a year…

  61. Buckus says:

    If someone is trying to sell me something unsolicited, they do not get my business.

  62. Burzmali says:

    I will answer the door and pretty much buy anything from any of the kids in the neighborhood. I have a 2 year old, and he’ll be making the rounds soon enough. I expect reciprocity. :) If I don’t recognize you as one of my neighbors kids, or you’re over 18, then you aren’t getting more than a minute of my time to hear your pitch (just in case) followed by a firm “not interested.”

  63. Portlandia says:

    In the past, if someone I didn’t know knocked on my door I simply didn’t answer it. Short of a police officer I don’t open the front door for anyone I don’t know. It’s easier to ignore them, than it is to be “polite” and say I’m not interested 20 times before they leave.

    Thankfully now, I have a doorman, no more unwanted solicitors at the front door.

    Same goes with phone calls, if I don’t have your number in my phone it’s not likely I will answer it.

  64. Red Cat Linux says:

    I let the dog answer the door. He’s so much better at that sort of thing. He is kryptonite to people Witnessing.

    For everyone else, if they are still there by the time I get to the door, I might give a listen. The last guy was selling alarm system monitoring with a free installation, and it had a bit of a creep factor to it. I had him repeat things several times on as I could not hear him over the dog who was threatening disembowelment by then. Normally, I would have corrected the dog, but I think we were both a little creeped out.

    Finally, he looked down in exasperation at my dog, and when he paused to catch his breath (the dog that is) I asked “do you really think I need an alarm system?”.

    He thanked me for my time and moved on.

  65. Destra says:

    Never give money to anyone from off the street. Only give out money to organizations that you’ve researched and gone to yourself.

  66. gabrewer says:

    I generally am sympathetic to kids who actually making the rounds themselves, and I will often buy from them or contribute to their fundraiser. I have a lot more respect for them than those who just let Mom & Dad take their order forms to the office and hit up their co-workers for wrapping paper, cookie dough, magazines, etc. What is bothersome though is the trend lately for some school fund raising projects to essentially just be “begging.” Not a car wash, not selling any candy or popcorn, not a barbecue lunch — just blantant requests for money to support their cause. Once I was approach by some boy scouts outside of Walmart asking for money to support a trip they were taking somewhere — Disney World I think. I kept waiting to here the pitch for what they were selling — but nothing, they just wanted me to give money. A rather appalling example to be setting for young people I would say.

    • erinpac says:

      Our band always did that. It was “tag day”, and the whole band went out in uniform. Actually, our reception was usually better than those selling items & drew a lot of thanks for not selling garbage. You got a receipt for taxes, and the entire amount went straight to the band. So, even $5 is decent… you’d have to spend a hundred or more on giftwraps to get that much to the school.

      I’d more gladly give to something like that if I supported the organization/cause. No, I do not need $30 rolls of giftwrap, $40 magazine subscriptions or $25 popcorn tubs.

      We also ran a haunted trail for Halloween, and a car wash in the summer. However, people did not like those as much and the costs ate into the donations by a good bit.

      • gabrewer says:

        Well, I agree about the expensive giftwrap, popcorn, etc. Still though I’m bother by the whole notion of kids being directed to go out and just ask for money. Although I understand it could be argued that the cost of holding a car wash, bake sale, spaghetti supper, etc. could just be contributed to the cause to begin with, I think maybe there is something to be said in teaching the kids (or at least trying, these days) the concept of earning their way. My observation has been that those kind of events usually do “turn a profit” — when you consider the cost of material and the free labor. It only takes a few chocolate chip cookies at 2 for $1.00 to be in the black.

        • Rectilinear Propagation says:

          I agree with you. It’d be one thing to ask for donations with nothing in return if it’s for something like the Red Cross or cancer research but if it’s just to take a trip they should be earning that money instead of just asking for it.

  67. HogwartsProfessor says:

    The best response I’ve found to people selling something, on the phone or whatever, is “I don’t have any money.” That works on everyone from lawnmower people to the Police Fund.

    As to knockers, it’s generally not safe to open the door, although I have done it from time to time. Usually it’s someone wanting to mow the lawn, pick up the perpetual branch pile I seem to have, etc. I’ll let them quote me a price and then if it’s too much, I tell them no thanks. Most of them go away quietly.

    I have a sign attached to the stoop railing that says “No Soliciting, No Proselytizing, No Leaflets, Now Get Off My Lawn.” It’s cut down on knocks, although I still find a leaflet or two when I get home sometimes. People sometimes ignore it and knock anyway; then I ignore them.

  68. hotcocoa says:

    How do you all feel about companies like Edward Jones, then?

  69. peebozi says:

    Unlike most commenters on this article, I don’t get an ego boost, belittling other, by saying no to D2D salespeople.

    The only time i get pleasure in saying “no” is when the narcotics cops called looking for donations…the guy was a cop and, as you might guess, a real arrogant bastard. trying to guilt me into making a donation to win the war on drugs.

    they especially don’t like being told that they suck, they’re wasting billions and they’re STILL LOSING! BTW – “We” are winning!

    • Red Cat Linux says:

      No, I’ve never assumed a cop to be an arrogant bastard.

      At the very least someone would have to post like they were for me to assume so.

  70. Rectilinear Propagation says:

    I never get door-to-door solicitors anymore so it’s not something I have to worry about. It only happened once since I’ve been in my current apartment. It was a lady looking for people to have a Bible study with right then. Even if I had been interested I wasn’t prepared to drop what I was doing to do that and I certainly wasn’t going to go off someplace with a stranger.

    Unfortunately, as someone else mentioned earlier, I have had people bang on my door and then immediately try the knob. I think it’s either thieves or people being assholes.

    I was much more likely to get harassed while waiting for the bus. Highly irritating since you can’t just get up and leave.

    Like a lot of you my policy is to say ‘No’. My office does a lot of volunteer and charity work so there’s plenty of opportunities to give at the office and my employer will match my monetary donations to reputable organizations with proof.

    • damageddude says:

      Someone tries the doorknob on my house (usually unlocked when we’re home and awake) and they will find themselves getting hit with the big heavy mirror by my door before they get any further then the entryway as I defend my property from the home invaders.

  71. tjytiedt says:

    My acid test is as follows:

    If they can fog a mirror, I don’t answer the door. I ALWAYS do research before buying goods or services or donating to worthy causes.

  72. Kensuke Nakamura says:

    I had 2 pushy “college students” try to sell me magazine subscriptions. Of course it was extremely aggressive yet vaguely worded so I didn’t realize it was a paid subscription and not a free sample until I was filling out forms. I told them they were being deceptive, sent them on their way, and used the cancelation form as soon as they were out the door.

  73. TheGreySpectre says:

    The only time I ever give money to a charity in exchange for cookies is at penny arcade expo when they are going around selling cookies to raise money for Child’s Play. Then again the founders of Child’s play are the same guys who started the charity and it is a charity I support anyways.

    You come to my door though and no way.

  74. yagisencho says:

    We finally posted a ‘No Soliciting’ sign last night. We’re not going to buy anything from you, we don’t want to hear about your religion, and we don’t want your burglary ring to scope out our home. GO AWAY.

    Friends and family (most of them) are welcome.

  75. RogueWarrior65 says:

    I always get annoyed at the kids (who knows if they even live in town) begging for money so they can go on a trip to Europe. If I don’t get a trip to Europe why should you get one? Sheesh.

  76. Daggertrout says:

    I’m extremely paranoid, so I don’t open the door to anything I’m not expecting. Nor do I answer the phone for any number I don’t recognize if I’m not expecting a call from some place.

  77. trencherman says:

    I am always very polite, and am happy to sign whatever someone’s pushing (clean water, save the trees, whatever “green” happening people are soliciting for in Austin). However, I always say something such as “I’ll be happy to sign your petition, and I support your cause, but I’m not giving any money at the door. Please send me some literature in the mail, and I’ll consider it.” The fact is, I already have my favorite charities.

  78. pinecone99 says:

    I never answer the door for anyone with a clipboard.

  79. bblawson says:

    I have made it a habit to never give money at the door – no matter what. In the case of Girl or Boy Scouts – I have one of each, so I’m covered.

  80. damageddude says:

    I always slam the door and hang up the phone when someone I don’t know is looking for money. Period. Making rash decisions without doing research rarely works out well. They can leave me paperwork and I’ll look them up when I get a chance — maybe.

    I have also done this for a charity I did know too — some environmental group that comes by once a year that I almost ran over as I was pulling into our driveway with my son around 6PM one evening. As my wife and daughter weren’t home yet, I knew I had to start dinner, get the pets fed, make sure homework was done etc at the end of a long day and this guy couldn’t understand why I didn’t want to do more then take his paperwork and sign his petition and send him on his way.

  81. bluline says:

    If my doorbell rings unexpectedly and there’s no car in the driveway that I recognize, or no car at all (meaning someone is going door-to-door), I simply don’t respond. They’ll go away soon enough.