Jun 10, 2008

Why Do I have No Spine?

Why? I am just wracking my brain as to why I allow myself to live the way I do. If you push me, magically I have a spine. But if you are someone who is trying to sell me something, nope. No spine.



I just got back from the Towers, to my Americans that means the Mall, which is where I do my grocery shopping. As I was walking in, I saw this little tent that had been erected near the entrance with sales demonstration written all over it. Great, somebody is going trying to sell me something. You can't not walk by it to get in the store, there is no way out of this situation.




They of course stop me and try to sell me this magic car cleaner that uses no water. It cleans every inch of your car, outside, inside, mirrors. Now, I have a not so secret love affair with an immaculately clean car. Ultimate Tire Shine{Tyre for the Aussies, yes, that is how you spell it here. You also spell jail - gaol which is madness} anyway, Ultimate Tire Shine or Tire Wet would be a perfectly appropriate birthday gift or stocking stuffer for me. I'm borderline obsessed with it. Anyway, you'd think this would be something I am interested in. However, it just the exact opposite. As a fan of cleaning products in general, I respect the fact that all cleaners are designed and formulated for specific purposes. It is not a selling point for me that I would be cleaning {and simultaneously waxing} my car with the same cleaner I would then do the glass and upholstery with. I also like using water to clean things.




Graeme, the salesman, wanted to walk me to my car to show me how this Genie in a Bottle works. I said I would love to, after I finished my shopping. What?! Did I really just say that. I am not at all interested. Inviting him to my car for the sales pitch only makes saying no after his presentation only that much more difficult!




I shopped and was walking out, wondering if I could muster the courage to tell him no now, or if I would end up put us both through the sales pitch. FYI, they had reminded me that I did need car cleaner, and incidentally I had already purchased an arsenal of car cleaners in the store.




It was then that I remembered there was an exit that I could go out that I could possibly slip by. I took my chances, and even though I had to walk an extra mile through traffic that was not for pedestrians, putting Gabey's and my life in danger as we played life sized Frogger. There was a spot where I would have to get close to them, and I thought I might be seen. I was now practically running past, casually of course, so as not to draw attention to myself.




I got to the car. I made it! Then I realized to my dismay, that I would have to drive past them, right past them, and they would surely see me, on my way out. I might even have to stop in front of them because their tent was at the crosswalk to enter the store. Crap. What now? I reverse out of my stall and start driving towards the exit. I do end up having to stop, right in front. So I roll down my window and say, "Hey, sorry, I ran out of time, I have to go pick up my daughter from school {big fat lie, it is not 4:30 in the afternoon with Laine standing there, the last one to be picked up} -Will you be here through the week? You will, okay, we'll be back tomorrow!"




Great, I hope I got everything I needed since I can't show my face at the Towers until next week. This is just typical example of what I have to do every few days when salesman are out looking for an easy sale. I used to constantly get accosted by Mary Kay ladies at Walmart. They would pressure me into giving them my contact details, which I would. They would call, I would think up a lie and hang up and promptly save their phone number in my phone as "Don't Answer". I had several of them programmed, and they all would occasionally call. When I was single I could never tell guys I didn't want to date anymore, I had a few bad situations and since I can't name names, there is probably no point in elaborating. I would always give guys a fake number because I could never say I wasn't interested. In fact, I think that "don't answer" bit that I use now was back from my single days. And don't even get me started on the Jehovah's Witnesses! The same set of witnessers has come to my house 3 times {that I know of} in the last 2-3 months because I politely agree to read their literature.





Anyway, I need to be better at just saying no. I feel bad, I don't like to let people down, I am too much of a pleaser sometimes. I need to find a nice polite way of declining so I don't have to deal with situations like these that take a lot of my time and energy!





Since every post is better with pictures, even if they have absolutely nothing remotely to do with it, here's some of little baby Laine. She used to love to eat berries and since they are so healty, we didn't really care about the mess. Man, Laine is sure getting some love from the blog, it is her birthday later in the week so she really will be getting all of the attention. I wanted to do a post about Gabey, but Ben said no to the pictures of Gabe in girl's pajamas on laundry day...


18 comments:

The Napier's said...

You totally crack me up. I love your story telling you are super witty!! Sounds like things are going well. Miss ya!!

Gaengy said...

Funny story...man you really went to some great lengths to get away from that guy! I feel your pain though. Yesterday pest control guys were in the neighborhood and I told dad to take care of it. I feel bad for them especially when I think of you out there those days long ago selling in Florida. The worst are the kirby vacume people. You can not even be nice to them! Cute pics of Laine...looking forward to her birthday blog!

Kate Gildea said...

First things first, a tent was erected at the entrance. No other word Nat....come one.

And don't worry, it runs in the family. I seriously can't say no to those people. Like when I bought a $40 magazine subscription from a creep in the ARizona mall. We were cut from the same cloth.

Ashleigh said...

Hello friend . . . it's called compassion, not spine-less (well I call it that). It's the reason I ended up in the VERY back of a sad little market in Jamaca buying a wooden carved fish for $5 and a horrific necklace I never wore and Olivia finally broke so I could finally trash it. I had two seperate Mary Kay facials since I lived in this (new) house and I even bought the whole facial cleaning system that made me break out. I also bought a kirby vacuum last May (my defense there . . . I really do LOVE, LOVE, LOVE it and I'm postive I got the lowest price possible). I now have a NO SOLICITING sign on the door and adhear to a strict policy.

Okay, the more I write the more I realize I can probably call it spineless . . . and now poor.

Nick & Nicole said...

I also got the family gene. Although it is starting to get easier for me. After I had that same exact experience with the Jehovah's Witnesses a few years ago, I finally thought that I am wasting their time by leading them on. So now I politely say, "thanks, but I already have a religion that I am completely satisfied with."

I used to not answer the phone when I saw that it was a salesperson, because I was afraid I couldn't say no. Now I say "no thank you," and hang up. (Except for if it is BYU-I looking for a donation, then I lie and say, "sorry, she's not home, can I take a message." I hope that I am not going to hell for lieing, but I don't want to make any more donations and I feel bad.)

After several really embarrassing incidents of me buying things from sales people (really, they are SO embarrassing, if you want to hear them, you will just have to call me, never mind, maybe I am not ready to tell them) Nick made fun of me so bad, that I am starting to get my backbone.

I mean, I work really hard to save money everywhere I can and you know how cheap I am, why would I spend $40 on a magazine subscription that I don't want. So now I am starting to take a page out of Nick's book and just say "no thanks" and keep walking and pretend that I don't hear them when they are still talking to me.

Julie said...

Um first of all those pictures are hillarious! I would love to make you a link button for your recipe site. I charge $15.00 for them. If you are interested then you can just email me with some details of what you might like and I can whip one up for you.
Can't wait to hear from ya!
*Leelou*
LeelouBlogs@aol.com

AnneMarie said...

I hate salespeople! And right at the entrance, that doesn't seem right. Laine is a cutie!

Kristine L. said...

One more Gildea girl to add to the group... me! Last year the Daily Herald came around and sold subscriptions. For some reason I just couldn't say no and ended up buying the paper. Good thing it was never delivered to me and if it was, they would put it really far away from my house and someone else would always end up taking it. I am getting better though. I usually just try to ignore them in the mall (why didn't you do this?! Keep walking, "no thanks", and on your way). I don't have much experience with the door to door, but if you have no intentions of buying, then don't lead them on! Just be nice and send them on their way.

Erin said...

natalie, i remember you from our freshmen days of usu, shacked up in the lovely continental apartments. i was one of whitney garner's roomies. i was bloghopping and came across your page... hilarious! living abroad is great blog fodder. it's a pity our paths didn't cross in the orient. you have a beautiful family! cheers, erin (skeen) burton

Patrick Family said...

yep, the same for me. I always find myself nervous and dodging the people outside of the store, i just don't want to be rude, but they just don't take no for an answer. lying unfortunately is always my route, for example "I already have that product or I have someone in the family that I use" I'm sure they can see right past me but whatever gets me past them without spending our savings works!

Andrea said...

I pretty much can't say no to anybody that I know--for favors and babysitting and stuff--but I ROCK at saying no to sales people. Even if it looks legit, I don't even tempt myself. I don't even feel bad if I don't know them. Now if I know them personally, that's harder. I guess that's why it drives me crazy that every woman in my ward hosts a bijillion "parties" where they stuff (anything from kitchen supplies to sexy underwear) to friends. I don't want to ruin a friendship by not going, but I really don't want any of that crap. I hate feeling pressured from people I know to buy their crap--I think it's a rude thing to do to a friend. Anyway....sorry if I just offended any Mary Kay sales representatives that read your blog!

Stacey Lau said...

Lol...what about just saying "no thank you" as you stroll past? Keep your eyes straight ahead and move quickly. It will only be uncomfortable for about 2 or 3 seconds and it will be SO worth it.

Were those pics from Korea? I remember coming to your house with Laine looking exactly like that and you trying to clean up strawberries from the floor with your central vac...lol...

Sals said...

Hey Natalie,
...I just read your last post(on your other blog)...and was looking at the your photo...I think I walked right past you on Sunday! :)
And I LOVE that your daughter's name is Laine....so's mine! (except we spell her's Layne!)
Ok email me at sally@crosbie.net.au
and I'll give you details on the photography!

Noahr said...

Last week Allison and I sat through a pretty painful Cutco presentation. I thought I would be nice and do this poor guy in training a favor, but never again until the next person comes to me. Allison decided to teach me a lesson and almost refused to talk, so I had to be the one to say no.

Tam said...

That's quite the story. I actually have a few of those unwanted calls labeled in my phone too. (I've actually gotten pretty good at saying NO.....My spots are reserved for the special ones I say no to who still refuse to give up).

I just HAD to comment on your previous MW section. How could I forget our dear MW prancing around the halls like a possessed Barbie robot? I think I saw her playing The Big Kahuna role for every production the university put on. I was so privileged to have her on ballroom team with me the same yr. I was on-yay-only she was, of course, on the competition team. Natalie, Did you not know she was Miss Utah like last year or something? Obviously!

Ben and Natalie said...

Yes Tam {and Ashleigh...And Katie} - I did know MW was Miss Utah and I know her name -she was actually in my ward my freshman year, she lived right above me. But I had a sliver of fear that some day she would find this blog and read it {she'd probably be too off in the clouds to realize we were talking about her -meanwhile she would be pointing her finger and laughing at this poor MW we are talking about...} anyway, I didn't want her to blog stalk me and realize it was HER we were all making fun of. It seemed that if it were anonymous it would be as rude to make fun of some one. But I guess that is just the passive agressive in me talking.

Kindred Family said...

Natalie - I'm exactly the same way. If a salesperson comes to my door I have to tell them that although I am interested they will need to come back when my husband is home. I then pack my schedule during that time slot ensuring I won't be there with Steve when they come back. It's pathetic!

Hannah AKA Buster! said...

and lets just add the last gildea girl to the family with no spine! I say yes to anything! like this woman in our ward who always asks me to baby sit but I am sure that her children are satan's children sent from hell to bother me! and she only pays like maybe 5 dollars an hour! So everytime she calls my head is screaming why in the heck would I want to watch your satan children but out of my mouth comes "sure I would love to!" anyways thats so funny!

 
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