Ernest Goes Door-to-Door

Friday, February 8th, 2013

Ernest Goes Door to DoorLast night, around 8pm, we were sitting on the couch playing Mario Kart while Lulu cavorted around the living room.  Suddenly, we hear the assertive rapping of a key on our front door. *Rap rap rap*

I rarely answer my door unless I’m expecting a package. I don’t know if it’s years of living alone or what, but I just don’t answer my door unless I am expecting someone. I especially hate when I look through the peephole and whomever is out there waves, as if I know them — or they can see my shadow blocking the peephole.

Since moving back into an apartment, we’ve gotten a lot of solicitors… to the point that I’m considering hanging a sign on the door: “If you’re selling anything, do not ring this doorbell if you like your balls.”

Anyway, so we didn’t answer it. About 30 seconds later, he raps again — harder this time, but still with the keys.  We ignored him. Within 30 seconds, he rapped again, even harder and then rang the doorbell a few times and knocked again. I mean, what the hell?!  When I was a kid, I was taught it’s impolite to 1) pop over to someone’s house unannounced and 2) show up at someone’s after 8pm unless you were invited.

(Which reminds me, about a week ago, a few people ran up the stairs to our place and rang the doorbell like they were visiting a frat house. They rang 3-4 times, giggling and chatting. When we didn’t answer, they disappeared. Still curious what that was about…)

So, now Lulu was all freaked out and I was getting pissed off.  I peeked through the keyhole and naturally, the guy waves and says, “It’s your neighbor, Ernie!”

I don’t know any of my neighbors, so I thought perhaps it was my neighbor, Ernie, so after throwing a few looks back and forth with mikey, we decided to open the door. Perhaps he had some of my mail or maybe my car had something wrong with it… I don’t know! So, I opened the door.

Ernie was selling newspapers. He assures me that he is my neighbor (yeah, sure) and that he “handles the newspaper on the property for everyone” and could he interest us in the paper?  I said no, thank you, we’re Internet people. And despite me trying 6 (seriously, SIX) times to get him to go away, he kept interrupting me at every turn, “But what about just Sunday? What if you want coupons? It’s only $3 a week!”  Dude, I don’t want the effing paper. Please go away. He even said, “What about for the rabbit?” who he saw while craning his neck to get a look inside our place through the 4 inches of open doorway I was standing in.

CREEPER.

I practically had to slam the door in his face and after he left us, we heard him key-tapping doors up and down the hallway, louder and louder with every try.

But really, is this how it is now? They’re worse than telemarketers, showing up at your home way after business hours and then cop-knocking on the door until you answer it?  Jesus Christ!  Aren’t you just supposed to knock and when no one answers you go the fuck away?

I called the apartment office after he left, leaving a message on their voicemail. I rambled and trailed off a few places, so I probably sounded like a moron, but it’s because I kept getting distracted by his incessant knocking on people’s doors. I could hear him calling out to people, “I’m your neighbor… Ernie!” 

I thought the office should know that someone is going around using them as leverage, claiming to be working for them, selling papers on the property. Let’s hope he’s not just casing apartments.

No one wants your archaic news media, ERNIE. Fold it into a kite and go fly that sucker.

  • 2/8/13 14:44 Aaron Poehler:

    It’s worth answering the door just to eliminate the lingering “still curious what that was about” feeling, but you have to be willing to say “No, goodbye” and shut the door IMMEDIATELY the second it’s determined to be a sales/religious/non-emergency solicitor. Do not engage them, do not feel you need to be polite, do not allow them the respect they have not afforded you. Shout through the door without opening it if you need to.
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  • 2/12/13 11:34 ChariD:

    Yay — comments!

    Anyway, we never open the door at home either. The UPS and FedEx folks know we won’t, so they don’t even bother ringing the doorbell anymore. They just leave the packages in the usual spot on the porch (we signed a thingie saying they could just leave them). You’d think we were hermits.

    Just got tired of everyone trying to sell us crap in our neighborhood with the big NO SOLICITORS sign at the entrance. I tried hanging a similar, smaller sign above our doorbell, but the asshole HOA fascists made us take it down.
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    • 2/12/13 15:22 Joelle:

      I switched back for youuuuu!

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  • 2/14/13 15:00 sizzle:

    I greatly dislike dropper-byers. This was a big problem for me when I was an apartment manager because people would knock all the time. I hated it but learned to live with it. Now that we live in the suburbs it creeps me out when anyone knocks. I feel a little un-neighborly but I like to know ahead of time when people are coming by. I’ve always kind of been this way.

    I didn’t realize people still read the newspaper. Weird.

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  • 4/10/13 19:00 Megan @mnmspecial:

    Like you we were taught never to drop by or knock/call someone after 8pm too. We have been so used to living out in the middle of no where that when my doorbell rang this week I thought my daughter had left a sleepover early. It was after midnight and the door bell was going crazy. As a mom I was in a panic that she was panicking because the door was locked. I am never answering the door again after dark.
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