by Richard A. Quadrini
Whether real or perceived, some of us harbor fears or unknowns that often cause us to avoid or retract from social encounters. As such, with our door closed and blinds drawn, our home can be as much a refuge as it is a castle.
Nonetheless, I was startled on how much I annoyed the gentleman upon ringing his doorbell to promote using my tree pruning services. He angrily noted that I was disrespecting the NO SOLICITING sign (which I hadn’t seen as it was mounted close to the ground).
My apology may have been inadequate as he continued to admonish me and tell me to leave his neighborhood. After a brief but startled pause, I told him that I couldn’t or wouldn’t do that. Sure enough after 15 minutes, a blue and white sedan pulled to the curb behind me.
The courteous officer and I had a civil conservation but did not reach any common ground. I was looking to supplement my meager income with some good quality pruning services. The officer was hoping to avoid repeated calls to her precinct when we solicitors came knocking in this neighborhood.
Another resident wisely suggested, that instead of ringing the next doorbell, I leave a note with a specific reference as to my recommendations regarding pruning their front yard tree. Good idea to consider.
In retrospect: I remain sorry for having annoyed the gentleman at his doorstep. I do maintain my right to offer my legitimate skilled services. But mostly, I hope that as a society, we Americans do not continue to close our ranks against those who may have a different perspective.
Life is hard enough. It is harder yet, when we engage in isolation.