Sunday, September 21, 2008

Would you like to buy an O?

Archer brought home his school fundraising kit this week. There was some fundraising project last year that we didn't participate in, but after buying magazines and popcorn from neighborhood kids going door to door in the past several days, I'm feeling more like taking my place in the ranks of parents hassling neighbors and co-workers to sign up.

There are three products: Three-pound tins of unbaked cookie dough (“Kosher!” brags the brochure); canvas 8x10 prints of your favorite photo; and handmade accessories from economic development projects in third-world countries. We'll probably buy some dough for ourselves, and I've got my eye on a couple of the products in the accessories catalog. The question then becomes how we get other people to participate.

Back when we worked at GE in Virginia, our co-workers would occasionally canvas the workgroup with catalogs of wrapping paper or scented candles. I vaguely disliked having a colleague standing over me while I searched for something I might be able to use or regift. If I ever have to do this, I vowed, I'll just have the stuff at my desk and send an e-mail out to everybody telling them that they can come by and look if they want.

And so I intend to do, although now that the time has come, I'm wondering if even that soft sell is too intrusive. It sure beats knocking on my neighbors' doors, though. Noel and I spent a few moments yesterday imagining what Archer would say if sent door-to-door with his catalogs:

"Umm ... as you know ... what are you going to buy?"

"How old are you? What is your total?"

"How much money do you have? I just have eighteen dollars and thirty-six cents."

"What number of items do you like?"


Amber said...

We have a break room at work that people leave their girl scout cookie sheets and school forms in for a week before picking them up.

the secret knitter said...

Do kids even go door-to-door to sell stuff anymore? I remember doing this in grade school to sell various things. I don't recall my parents tagging along, so the question is if this was because we lived in a village or if people weren't yet sufficiently spooked that kidnappers lurked behind every corner.