Monday, April 8, 2013

Avon Calling

Lately I have been doing something both time-honored and generally disliked:  going door-to-door. It has its ups and downs.  Meeting voters and having the opportunity to experience actual human contact is extremely valuable. Intruding into people's home spaces is a delicate matter, though. In our society we don't encourage or even accept a door-to door approach anymore.

I asked my friend Greg to answer the following:  I am excited to answer my door when _______________.

"When it's a package from Amazon," he said. We laughed.

When I was little, the slogan, "Ding-dong, Avon calling!" was as familiar as
the most popular Internet memes of today.  In my neighborhood the milkman came right into your house in the morning and put the milk in your refrigerator while you were eating breakfast. Mother bought brushes from the Fuller Brush man, and the knife sharpening man came rolling down the street several times a year.

And no, this was not in the dark ages. It was not truly all that long ago. Neighbors really did come by to borrow a cup of sugar, or ask if you could watch the baby while they ran to the store, or to ask you to donate to the school bake sale. Or to return your ladder.

Not any more.

We are so much busier these days, and we have withdrawn more into ourselves. We fear intrusion. We must protect our families. Our home is our fortress.  The world is a scary place.

And into this 21st century world comes 20th century (or earlier) politicking in a village-sized election.  I feel that I am the very model of anachronistic politics. I do want to meet my neighbors. I want to know what your concerns are, what your ideas for the future are.

I just don't want to bother you.

So, if you live in Oakland Mills, and you see me and my friends out walking with "Oakland Mills-Orange" fliers, don't be alarmed. We don't want money. We're not selling new windows or security systems. We aren't trying to get you to come to our church.  We're just out sharing some information about the upcoming CA Elections.

You don't have to open the door. But, if you do:  we'll be nice. I promise.


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