The Often Occurring and Always Interruptive Knock of the Tree People at the Door

It’s inevitable. The second I sit down at my computer to write, I will hear a knock at the door. It is, wait for it…a tree service representative. Here’s a sample of a conversation I had with one yesterday:

Me: “Are you here about the tree?” (I have a scraggly looking tree in a very prominent spot in my front yard.)

Him: “How did you know?”

Me: “Two other people knocked today.”

Him: “You see that tree over there? That tree is dead.”

Me: “Its okay. It did the same thing last year, but then it came back.”

Him: “Its got no leaves.”

He had a good point, but still, I wasn’t entirely convinced. I shook my head and began to close the door.

Him: “Wait! Hold on, do you mind if I just walk along the side of your fence a little?”

Me: “I don’t know. Why?”

Him: “So I can see your neighbor’s yards. You know, check for more dead trees.”

I agreed to this, but then, watching him walk back, I thought: Why on earth did I just agree to that? Exactly what kind of a neighbor am I? What I really should have done is not answer the door at all. I thought of a line from a story by Sherman Alexie:

“Trust me, no one interesting or vital has ever knocked on a front door at three in the afternoon, so I ignored the knocking and kept at my good work.”

I should have done this, too. Of course, the knocker in the story ends up thinking the guy isn’t home and goes around to his cellar door to break in. Thus, the title of Alexie’s story: Breaking and Entering.

Is there any way to win?

6 thoughts on “The Often Occurring and Always Interruptive Knock of the Tree People at the Door

  1. Ha! Funny post. We have one very small aspen in our yard and that’s it. We don’t get any tree people knocking, but get lots of friendly religious type folks who hand out nice flyers and such. And high school kids doing a really crappy job of selling cards for their sports teams (the cards get you discounts and deals around town for restaurants, etc.). I don’t mind buying stuff for a good cause, but I HATE it when the kid doesn’t even make eye contact and mumbles something like, “Do you want one of these?” “What is it?” “Just this thing to get stuff. $20 if you want it.” “Um…tempting pitch you’ve got there. No thanks.”

  2. Haha! Ohhh the 3pm knockers are always annoying, but my least favourite are the 7pm on a weekend ones who seem to think it’s fine to ring the doorbell, interrupt downtime and wake small children up to boot!

  3. I know how you feel. Last week I felt so guilty, I had to threaten a children’s cancer charity because they were harassing me. I’m talking eight phone calls a day. Next time, ignore the door. Everyone that counts will have your phone number.

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