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Religious (or otherwise) Doorknockers. (BS)

Penny S. 19 May 99 - 12:43 PM
kb 19 May 99 - 11:30 AM
Bert 19 May 99 - 11:12 AM
Art Thieme 19 May 99 - 11:08 AM
kb 19 May 99 - 10:03 AM
Allan C. 19 May 99 - 08:53 AM
hank 19 May 99 - 08:47 AM
murray@mpce.mq.edu.au 19 May 99 - 04:40 AM
Roger the zimmer 19 May 99 - 04:27 AM
Steve Parkes 19 May 99 - 03:32 AM
Charlie Baum 19 May 99 - 02:11 AM
ddw 19 May 99 - 01:49 AM
Lonesome EJ 19 May 99 - 01:04 AM
campfire 19 May 99 - 12:54 AM
lloyd61 19 May 99 - 12:44 AM
Rick Fielding 19 May 99 - 12:18 AM
WyoWoman 18 May 99 - 10:20 PM
alison 18 May 99 - 09:59 PM
Art Thieme 18 May 99 - 09:25 PM
Joe Offer 18 May 99 - 07:16 PM
The Shambles 18 May 99 - 06:45 PM
Matthew B. 18 May 99 - 06:36 PM
reggie miles 18 May 99 - 06:27 PM
Penny S. 18 May 99 - 05:31 PM
Rick Fielding 18 May 99 - 05:05 PM
Charlie Baum 18 May 99 - 03:18 PM
Bert 18 May 99 - 02:50 PM
LEJ 18 May 99 - 02:21 PM
campfire 18 May 99 - 02:06 PM
kb 18 May 99 - 01:48 PM
Rick Fielding 18 May 99 - 01:11 PM
Bert 18 May 99 - 12:23 PM
Penny S. 18 May 99 - 12:18 PM
Allan C. 18 May 99 - 12:09 PM
kb 18 May 99 - 11:59 AM
Jon W. 18 May 99 - 11:13 AM
Sheye 18 May 99 - 10:37 AM
katlaughing 18 May 99 - 09:11 AM
Tony Burns 18 May 99 - 06:39 AM
Art Thieme 18 May 99 - 02:43 AM
Rick Fielding 18 May 99 - 01:17 AM
Charlie Baum 18 May 99 - 12:54 AM
Rick Fielding 18 May 99 - 12:41 AM
katlaughing 18 May 99 - 12:32 AM
campfire 18 May 99 - 12:17 AM
Bewildered in Denver 17 May 99 - 10:54 PM
John Hindsill 17 May 99 - 10:03 PM
Jeri 17 May 99 - 08:56 PM
The Shambles 17 May 99 - 07:38 PM
Banjer 17 May 99 - 06:59 PM
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Subject: RE: Religious (or otherwise) Doorknockers. (BS)
From: Penny S.
Date: 19 May 99 - 12:43 PM

Kb, I sympathise. I was once, while minding my own business in a public street, herded by two Alsatians (German Shepherds), hackles up, growling, very scary. It was just when there had been a few stories of deaths from savaging, too. I waited a few moments for the owner - I thought they were security from a building site. No owner. I waited a bit longer (ages!). I considered climbing a nearby brick gate post. I considered staring at them, but there were two of them, one each side. I considered grabbing the collars. No collars. I remembered what Odysseus did in the Odyssey, and sitting down. It seemed appropriate psychology, but I wasn't sure (it might have been Ithacan training), and felt pretty certain that the dogs didn't read Greek. No-one passed. (In a busy town). I decided that I should not radiate fear and adrenaline, thought about "perfect love casteth out fear", sent up a quick prayer, and started to walk on the way I had been going in a non-threatening manner, very slowly. The owner appeared and called them off. It's an odd thing, but when a teeny-tiny Yorkshire terrier yaps across the street, the owner makes profuse apologies. This one deliberately didn't see me. So I changed my destination to the police station. They must have had a word, as the dogs were not seen on the loose again.


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Subject: RE: Religious (or otherwise) Doorknockers. (BS)
From: kb
Date: 19 May 99 - 11:30 AM

Me again, the bull story was probably just a story. I don't like being a door knocker because of the fear of doing more harm than good (and rejection, too) but also because of dogs inside. I've gotta eat, so in order to bring home grocery money I deliver mail and hate it when I have something to be signed for or too large for the box and first thing I hear when I knock or ring is the loud voice (be it barking or growling) of a dog inside. I've been attacked by a 'Pit' a 'Rotweiller' and once by a very large 'Great Dane' Fortunately in one of these cases the animal wasn't interested in lunch or was disciplined enough that he stopped at his master's first command. I did have to fight the 'pit' though.


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Subject: RE: Religious (or otherwise) Doorknockers. (BS)
From: Bert
Date: 19 May 99 - 11:12 AM

LOL KB, but the city won't let me keep livestock.

Bert


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Subject: RE: Religious (or otherwise) Doorknockers. (BS)
From: Art Thieme
Date: 19 May 99 - 11:08 AM

Guys, (all genders included),

One of the best "no trespassing" signs I ever saw was:

DO NOT RUN FROM DOG---SOMEONE WILL BE OUT TO HELP YOU !!!

That was in Chillicothe, Illinois right on the Illinois River. It's a beautiful day here in Illinois. And the river is reflecting every detail as if it were a mirror. Never did see it so calm...

KB, Is that story bull? Or was it no bull? If it was no bull, then the bull wasn't there actually and you're tellin' us a tall one. ;-)

Art


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Subject: RE: Religious (or otherwise) Doorknockers. (BS)
From: kb
Date: 19 May 99 - 10:03 AM

Yesterday, was my first time ever to wander onto a chat line, discussion link or thread, so I came in from perhaps the wrong side of town, but did meet a new friend. Thanks Bert, you impressed me. I need to make this short as I have a rather lenghty 'Doorknocker' story to pass on. I tell it about my uncle, although as far as I know it is fictional.

Early, one morning, just a little after 8 AM, as my uncle was finishing his second cup of coffee, there comes this 'little' knocking on his front door. Over and over, knock, knock, knock. Uncle drank down the last of the coffee, got up and walked to the front door and opened it up to find a little government man in a three piece business suit standing there holding a 'card' straight out and slightly up for my uncle to see. "This here card gives me the right to look at anything on your place that I want to and there ain't a thing you can do about it." My uncle said, "Look all you want, it's okay with me." With this Uncle went back to the kitchen and poured another cup of coffee. He had pretty near finished this off when he heard a small, frightened voice coming up to him from down below the hill, around about the barn. (Uncle lived on a farm at that time) He finished off his coffee, got up and started out toward the barn. As he neared the lot fence there on the side of the barn he spied this little government man running around and around the lot with Uncle's 2,400 pound Brangus bull two steps behind. The little man is hollering, 'Help me,help me, oh please mister help me." Uncle did, he said, "Show him your dern card" I hope I haven't mis-used this link by telling this story, but this would be one unique way to handle "Doorknockers' kb


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Subject: RE: Religious (or otherwise) Doorknockers. (BS)
From: Allan C.
Date: 19 May 99 - 08:53 AM

An option might be to announce: "Please consider counting me among the swine and take your pearls elsewhere."


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Subject: RE: Religious (or otherwise) Doorknockers. (BS)
From: hank
Date: 19 May 99 - 08:47 AM

Accualy, EJ, The passage about shaking the dust from your feet refers to an entire city that is unwilling. This is a (symbolic) jesture that you would not want to place on a city if anyone belived. That beliver will have friends that won't belive, and you don't want to say something about anyones friends. I get the idea that shaking the dust from your feet was a rarely done thing. (I only recall reading about it once)

I don't know how much door knocking was done early on, but we do have record that the apposles would stand in the town square (equivelent, towns in those days often had a central place where the mayor would daily annonce the news, and the rest of the day anyone could use that place)


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Subject: RE: Religious (or otherwise) Doorknockers. (BS)
From: murray@mpce.mq.edu.au
Date: 19 May 99 - 04:40 AM

My doorknocker is atheist; but the doorbell has become so religious that it is now both a Jew and a Christian. Now people have to use the knocker all weekend.

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Subject: RE: Religious (or otherwise) Doorknockers. (BS)
From: Roger the zimmer
Date: 19 May 99 - 04:27 AM

I'm afraid I don't respond to cold calling by phone or at the door. I just say "no thank you" and ring off/shut the door. Being naturally surly , that's polite for me, but then neither of us wastes time. Incidentally, the latest issue of the London "New Statesman" magazine has a cartoon tryptych on this very subject, using methods mentioned on this thread. Spooky or what?


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Subject: RE: Religious (or otherwise) Doorknockers. (BS)
From: Steve Parkes
Date: 19 May 99 - 03:32 AM

My grandfather had a very unconventional way of handling religious doorknockers: he'd invite them in and talk with them. Granddad was very religious - he was a Methodist - and could discuss, dispute or agree, as apropriate. He thought that with something as important as knowing God, you had a duty to show the rest of the world what t meant, by your own example at least. Knowing the bible inside out helped too. I think the knockers often went away having learned something!

Not that he was a straight-laced strict bible-thumper: he was great fun, and didn't subscribe to the notion that suffering is good for you; quite the opposite. We all inherited his sense of humour (excruciating puns a speciality) and some of us got his artistic skill, while others of us have to make do with the musical ability.

Ask me about the rest of the family sometime!

Steve


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Subject: RE: Religious (or otherwise) Doorknockers. (BS)
From: Charlie Baum
Date: 19 May 99 - 02:11 AM

I should relate the story of the woman who came knocking on my door a few years ago trying to interest me into purchasing cable tv.

Now at this time, I was copying a record on to cassette tape for a friend, so my record player was going and hooked up to my cassette player. My computer was on in the other corner. Then "All Things Considered" came on NPR, but since my record player and cassette machine were occupying my usual speakers, I put on a Walkman radio with earphones. Then I needed to find out about airflights to T*******, so I called an airline on the telephone, but was placed on endless hold for more than half an hour.

Then comes the knock on my door. I am wearing radio headphones and have a phone to my other ear, but explain that it's all right--I'm on hold on the telephone (and the radio story of the moment wasn't particularly interesting). She sees the computer and the record player and the cassette machine and launches off into her spiel about cable television. I patiently let her finish, and then explained that I didn't own a television set, and had no plans to get one. She was incredulous, and found me eccentric, or perhaps just passing strange.

I inquired about cable radio, which they didn't offer. (Web Radio hadn't been invented yet!) But I took off my radio headphones, hung up the phone, and as she realized that she had nothing to sell me, we were able to spend a few minutes in a delightful conversation about media, life without television, and travel to T*****.

--Charlie Baum


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Subject: RE: Religious (or otherwise) Doorknockers. (BS)
From: ddw
Date: 19 May 99 - 01:49 AM

I agree that it's an easier life if we're polite to everyone -- doorknockers, telemarketers and all -- but there's a limit. When somebody insults me, I feel no compunction about giving them a blast and I consider anyone who shows up on my doorstep telling me he/she knows more about how I should lead my life than I do to be insulting me. How dare they tell me that I'm inferior because I don't believe in their god? I don't believe in any god at all, but I sure as hell don't go knocking on doors telling people there's any reason they shouldn't

For those who defend the doorknockers, just let me ask: Do you like to have your morals, your intelligence, your worthiness as a human being questioned by these people? They may think they have the right -- god-given or otherwise. I strongly disagree, but I'm always willing to make a deal with them: I won't bother them if they don't bother me.

ddw


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Subject: RE: Religious (or otherwise) Doorknockers. (BS)
From: Lonesome EJ
Date: 19 May 99 - 01:04 AM

It's interesting to think that some of the first door-knockers were Christ's Disciples. Apparently they got some fairly rough treatment too, since He advised them "If you go to a door and are rebuked, shake the dust from the doormat off your feet." Pretty good advice for any salesman- if you really believe in your product, you shouldn't be afraid of rejection. But you also need to know when someone is just flat NOT buying.


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Subject: RE: Religious (or otherwise) Doorknockers. (BS)
From: campfire
Date: 19 May 99 - 12:54 AM

Art, you hit it pretty well right on when you said "one man's joke hits another one like a 2 x 4". So we all have our "buttons" - and once in a while someone's is going to get pushed. Hopefully, not the same person's all the time. If everyone wanted to be sure not to hit anybody's buttons, we'd all have to shut up.

I've never not answered the door except when I actually was dripping naked, in the shower; or literally too sick to get up and answer it. And maybe once when I was "engrossed in personal activities" ;-).

But once I've answered the door, I still feel that I have the right to decide whether or not I want to buy a magazine or discuss the local elections with whomever rang the bell. Sometimes I do. Sometimes I don't. And after I've said "I'm sorry, I can't this time", or "I'm sorry, I already have a church", if the person on my porch doesn't leave, who's the one being rude?

campfire


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Subject: RE: Religious (or otherwise) Doorknockers. (BS)
From: lloyd61
Date: 19 May 99 - 12:44 AM

C.S Lewes never had to knock on doors, he had the power of the pen. We have our music to spread our message. Why take aim at others who are trying to get their message out the only way they know now. Lets spend a little more time thinking about our message and how we deliver it.

Lloyd


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Subject: RE: Religious (or otherwise) Doorknockers. (BS)
From: Rick Fielding
Date: 19 May 99 - 12:18 AM

Joe. Heather would open the door in a flash if she saw it was you out there. Me too actually. Don't think I've ever not answered or told someone to go away through the screen. Just too damn curious, I guess. It's currently election time around here and the candidates are out in full force. We listen to 'em, but we DO ask questions, and we let them know that we keep up with the issues. That usually changes their approach from auto-pilot to actually interesting. Funny thing is the moment you let them know that you intend to make your vote "count" they become far more candid. A couple of days ago Heather had several friends over when the "Green" Party candidate knocked. I answered and invited her in. She talked, answered questions and it felt like a mini-town meeting. She sure won't win, but she picked up six votes!

Art, thanks for responding. Sorry, I guess I missed the point entirely vis. the "condom thread"- I can be as thick as a brick at times. Thought it was just a "wicked" way of getting a great discussion going, with a bit of irony in regards to the "how old?" and "where does a ....?" etc threads. Well if you "couldn't beat 'em, so you joined em', you've done a hell of a job, and you fooled me. Don't know about "talk radio" though. I used to listen to "Rush" for my "dark side entertainment" and it sure sounded one-sided to me - unlike mudcat. Carol sounds like a gem. Tell her that the JWs got less flack than the "Corries" around these parts.
rick


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Subject: RE: Religious (or otherwise) Doorknockers. (BS)
From: WyoWoman
Date: 18 May 99 - 10:20 PM

Once, many years ago when the earth was young and so was I, I decided to make some money by selling Avon door-to-door. I hated the very thought of it, but was desperate, and worked very hard at putting on my "game face" every time I had to go out. I was careful not to go in homes that looked scary or in homes in which a man was the only one answering the door (sorry, guys, but we have to err on the side of caution).

One afternoon, however, I rang the bell and this little, old, wizened man came shuffling to the door. He seemed so eager for company and so happy to see me, I went ahead and entered the house when he invited me in. He proceeded to show me every photograph on his wall and tell me in LENGTHY detail about each person featured there. Finally, as I was taking my leave and trying hard to extricate myself from the situation, he drew my attention to yet another photo. I looked at it respectfully, curiously, for a second and as I did, he shuffled over, took careful aim and with his little, old barely functioning fingers, gave me a good pinch on me little arse.

I was surprised and put off, but when I got outside, I started laughing so hard I could barely stand up. I must've been a sight, stumbling down the sidewalk with my little Avon bag in my hand, laughing like a crazy woman, wiping tears from my eyes.

You just can't help but admire the life force...

kc


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Subject: RE: Religious (or otherwise) Doorknockers. (BS)
From: alison
Date: 18 May 99 - 09:59 PM

Hi,

I'm usually polite to door knockers.... it's the ones who phone wanting to fix my roof or sort out my finances with their new wonderplan while I'm trying to serve dinner to my family who really drive me nuts............

I was throwing a frisbee for my dog on a deserted beach in Northern Ireland one afternoon when I noticed that I was being watched from the top of a cliff. He watched for a while, then he disappeared, and appeared again a few minutes later walking along the beach towards me. As he approached I saw that he was an absolute "honey" (NOI)... and thought this should be fun. It's not every day you meet a hunk on the beach, never mind get chatted up by one... So he came up and started talking about my dog, and the weather...... and then it happened. "I'm with the church of Jesus Christ and the Latter Day saints, I'm here doing some missionary work.".......... talk about coming back down to earth with a bump. But before he got any further with his spiel I countered with.... "oh that's interesting, I've just finished doing an outreach for primary school kids." He didn't fancy challenging me then and disappeared very quickly back up to the cliff to where his wife an two toddlers had now appeared to wait for him.

slainte

alison


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Subject: RE: Religious (or otherwise) Doorknockers. (BS)
From: Art Thieme
Date: 18 May 99 - 09:25 PM

People, that's what makes horse races---differences of opinion. I suspect I'm reacting to visualizing my wife, who is quite ill, having the "funny stuff" described here inflicted on her when she knocks on some door. The best part of what she does is that, to paraphrase again, it keeps her ON the street. :-)

Rick, sorry if I've seemed inconsistent and been a disappointment to ya. Lately I guess I'm just not a people pleaser. One persons joke hits the other guy over the head with a 2x4. But it does get his attention. The infamous condom thread you mentioned was a failed attempt by me to point out that we were getting away from music. There was no other motivation for starting that one. When it became obvious that many here wanted to go with the talk radio format I decided if I couldn't beat 'em, I'd join 'em. So I put in my two cents when the urge came over me or when I thought something I knew or had been through would be of interest. Could be I should start an ethnic joke thread. ;-) But that might bring in too much adverse reaction from potentially violent folks. Telling the funny things we've done to Witnesses is safe---like giving the finger to someone from the relative safety of your car; But I doubt the J.W.s would react with road/door rage.

Affectionately,

Art


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Subject: RE: Religious (or otherwise) Doorknockers. (BS)
From: Joe Offer
Date: 18 May 99 - 07:16 PM

Well, in 25 years on knocking on doors, I've had guns pointed at me only once - and that time, I had called in advance for an appointment. When I finally convinced the people that I was a government investigator and meant them no harm, they invited me in and we had a great time talking about all sorts of things once we finished with business.
There was one old guy who was naked from the waist down when he opened his door - for a moment, I actually forgot what I was going to say. I've had the police called on me at least twice, and I've encountered all sorts of nasty dogs and nasty people. Many times, people just try to pretend they're not home. That's really frustrating, because I have to keep going back until they finally answer the door and tell me they don't want to talk to me.
I have to say that in all my years of going door-to-door, I can't understand why people can get so annoyed at me for simply ringing their doorbell. I get unannounced visitors at my door less than twice a month, and I like to stop and chat with them for a moment or two. Whenever I have people come to my door, or when I go to theirs, I challenge myself to try to make their day a little nicer. Usually, if I can get people to take a moment, they find they enjoy being interviewed by a government investigator.
I suppose that I could be found guilty of proselytizing on the job. I rarely mention my religion unless people ask, but my beliefs require me to be kind to everyone I meet. I find I have a much stronger effect on people that way than I would have by preaching.
Now, if only those people would open the blankety-blank door!
-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: Religious (or otherwise) Doorknockers. (BS)
From: The Shambles
Date: 18 May 99 - 06:45 PM

Amen


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Subject: RE: Religious (or otherwise) Doorknockers. (BS)
From: Matthew B.
Date: 18 May 99 - 06:36 PM

Ahem. This thread started out so nicely and became such a downer. Lighten up, okay? Nobody was telling anybody here that the JW beliefes are wrong or bad. We were just sharing anecdotes on common experiences of dealing with the awkward situations incurred when others try to invade our privacy with their (sincerely held) beliefs.

Sheesh. We all have our own opinions. For example, I happen to think that a Jew who accepts Christ as his savior is (to coin a phrase) a "Christian" -- and calling himself a "Jew For Jesus" is sort of like me calling myself a "Vegetarian for Meat" But hey, he has every right to call himself whatever he wants.

Ah, but I do digress. (couldn't help it)

But the main point is this: since this is Mudcat -- which is a kind of sacred place for me because of our shared love for music (no offense) -- why don't we write a song about it? (sneaky grin)

Besides, if you look at the top of this page, you'll see a joke I posted about Jehovah's Witnesses... whisch was told to me by a Jehovah's Witness. So I think we can use stuff like this for bringing us closer together, by letting us share a good laugh.

End of sermon.


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Subject: RE: Religious (or otherwise) Doorknockers. (BS)
From: reggie miles
Date: 18 May 99 - 06:27 PM

Campfire, I couldn't agree more. When confronted by these traveling bands in the past I've tried all manner of reason to explain why I'd just as soon not see them darken my doorstep again but they don't seem to get it. They've even gone so far as to say that their elders may not give them permission to not come back. After that I guess I became a prime target for them. Maybe they figured if they could win me over they'd really have accomplished a miraculous feat. I understand why they do what they do but how many times must I relate or debate with members of their faith? The same group seems to send various different members to my door alone or in pairs. The paired teams more often than not consist of a young person, who does most of the dialog, with an elderly person, aparently there to observe and help if things get sticky. I get the feeling I'm being used in a sort of training exercise and if so, I feel I should be properly monetarily compensated for my time and energy. Hey, if I'm going to get run through the theological ringer as part of this process but it means a few extra bucks on the side, I say, hit me with your best shot. You know I might just have something here. Those folks should just hire a few households as test subjects. Pay them a salary to be there to talk to when they need to train some newbies. I'll make sure to bring that idea up to them the next time they drop by.


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Subject: RE: Religious (or otherwise) Doorknockers. (BS)
From: Penny S.
Date: 18 May 99 - 05:31 PM

Kb, I wish I'd read your last post above first, you come over completely differently. I think you'll find, if you look through some of the recent threads, how much the love of God moves in the people here.


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Subject: RE: Religious (or otherwise) Doorknockers. (BS)
From: Rick Fielding
Date: 18 May 99 - 05:05 PM

Kb, don't get scared off by our tangents. I'm a life-long theological questioner. When I get the answers that make sense to ME, I'll stop questioning - maybe. There's one thing I'll never question however, The power of the music of Hank Williams. He said with few words and fewer chords, what thousands have tried to say in their music.
Welcome


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Subject: RE: Religious (or otherwise) Doorknockers. (BS)
From: Charlie Baum
Date: 18 May 99 - 03:18 PM

Sorry if anyone took offense at my somewhat (well, very!) flippant discussion of an incident a decade and a half ago, but what actually occurred was a wonderful free-ranging theological discussion. It's just that my roommate and I expected our guests to have the same open mind to Biblical interpretation that they expected us to have. And as they offered each of their interpretations, we countered with counterinterpretations from the great religious minds of history, from Ezra and Jeremiah to Hillel and Shamai to the Nicene Coucil and Thomas Aquinas to Maimonides and Rashi to Thomas Merton and Harvey Cox to Emil Fackenheim and Abraham Joshua Heschel. Perhaps they came thinking they may have had all the answers. We hoped that by the time they left, they'd realize that we had all the questions. And a religious approach that thinks questions are sometimes better than answers.

It was actually a good-natured, wonderful examination of lots of religious tenets.

--Charlie Baum


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Subject: RE: Religious (or otherwise) Doorknockers. (BS)
From: Bert
Date: 18 May 99 - 02:50 PM

KB, Hank Williams and Johnny Cash are a couple of my favourites too.

As you have probably gathered I'm not a religious person. I did love Johnny & June singing 'Far side banks of Jordan' though - a great love song.

Bert.


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Subject: RE: Religious (or otherwise) Doorknockers. (BS)
From: LEJ
Date: 18 May 99 - 02:21 PM

kb...don't worry, we know that you were just expressing your feelings...and that's OK! I wouldn't waste my time trying to win many religious converts on the Mudcat, though, unless you want to open a thread for a reasonable discussion about it. The glue that holds this very diverse group together is music, and you'll find that next to that comes argument ,humor and a unique kind of respect for each other and our feelings and opinions. Welcome to Mudcat!

LEJ


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Subject: RE: Religious (or otherwise) Doorknockers. (BS)
From: campfire
Date: 18 May 99 - 02:06 PM

Well said, Rick.

Art, it's not necessarily any particular religious or sales or whatever group. It's people who come to MY door, interupting MY time, to sell/give/whatever ME something I don't WANT.

The little waif who stands on my porch with sad eyes until I find some $5 trinket in her box of junk for sale (but can't tell me what I'm supporting by making a purchase) is equally disturbing as the Nazarene (yes, we've got them, too)who won't believe that I might have my own road to heaven.

If I wanted lightbulbs, I would go to the store and buy them; if I felt a burning need to change religions, I'd visit several area churches until I found one that meets my needs.

The few hours a week that I'm at home, I'd like to spend doing the things that make me, me. Not defending my political, religious, or economical view points. If "doorknockers" would accept an "I'm sorry, I'm not interested" and leave, or respect "No Solicitations, Please" signs, perhaps the world would be a better place.

campfire


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Subject: RE: Religious (or otherwise) Doorknockers. (BS)
From: kb
Date: 18 May 99 - 01:48 PM

I wish Jesus could be as important to everyone as He is to me, but I know He isn't. I'm not a pushy person, I've brought attention to Him, it's up to each of us how we respond. I hope no one here will dislike me. I am indeed interested in music as it was the lyrics pages that led me here and if I may, let me add that Hank Williams and Johnny Cash are my favorite singers of all time, if that does any good. Forgive me if that is drifting off the subject and I'll try to not be a 'cyber-doorknocker' or 'cyber-pest'.


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Subject: RE: Religious (or otherwise) Doorknockers. (BS)
From: Rick Fielding
Date: 18 May 99 - 01:11 PM

Art, I'm truly surprised at your reaction to this thread. When I first joined Mudcat I was (like most I gather) a little timid at posting anything outside the realm of guitar chords or what kind of mandolin to buy. It was reading YOUR postings that convinced me that a little ascerbic humour would not be immediate grounds for expulsion.
This thread has followed a pretty predictable line for any non-musical-somewhat controversial Mudcat discussion. It's been funny, educational, passionate, edgy, and in general all the things that make the "music only" folks throw out an insult or two and then run for the hills. Among all our community you are the absolute last person I would have expected to use the term "this quite useless thread". My first introduction to the "non record making Art" was the infamous "Condom thread", and in this one here you've made reference to "screwing" and "Dahmer!" Something doesn't add up.
Many folks here have gotten some of their personal styles tweaked, (and sometimes in a pretty heavy-handed way)but they usually bounce back with a better argument, and so it goes until everyone loses interest and goes on to some "Is Dylan folk?" thread. You imply that the "thread shouldn't even have been started", and that just seems so inconsistant with what I've read in so many of your postings.
When you say "her religion bugs the hell out of me", but that they're nice people "when they're not talking religion", who would disagree? The problem for some obviously is that when people come to the door (repeatedly) and ONLY talk religion, who sees the "nice?" I guess like you, "it bugs the hell out of them" and they react.
Art, I've grown to have a tremendous amount of respect for you (and your tongue-in-cheek approach to the things we have little control over)and I'm well aware of the high esteem you've earned from the Mudcat, so questioning your reaction to this thread is a might scary.(makes me feel like a new-comer again) Even while thinking about this I've noticed folks have jumped in saying "sorry Art", and it's sorely tempting to just "erase and forget it". However, one of the things I've learned here is "think it over, and if it's what you really feel - say it." If ever I've met a community that can deal with a "live and let live" philosophy, it's this one - and that includes the posters in this thread. Strikes me they were only asking the same courtesy from their visitors.

If you're still talking to me, lemme tell you about the great "postal Massacree" of Kingston Road. Our "mailing problem" seems to have begun and ended with the little red mail box immediately in front of our house. Now any intelligent person would take the time to go to the post office 2 miles away and let them affix their Govt. approved stamps to packages and then send them. Not us. Much easier to put on (what we thought was proper) postage stamps and walk ten feet. I won't go into details (too boring) but I may have blown a couple of festivals this summer, as well as having stuff not get to you and a couple of others. It's infuriating, and I have to go to the central office in a few days, where , if I'm lucky, they may find the missing packages (about eight in all) if I'm lucky. You'll get your album. I just may not be alive by the time it happens>
Rick


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Subject: RE: Religious (or otherwise) Doorknockers. (BS)
From: Bert
Date: 18 May 99 - 12:23 PM

Well welcome aboard KB. Here, you will find folks who will disagree with you on just about any subject under the sun, often just for the hell of it. You probably feel outnumbered because this is nominally a folk music site and religion is not our normal topic of discussion. However, you will find that Mudcateers (that's us) are basically good people. So stay if it's love and friendship that you want, there's plenty of that for all. But, if your primary interests are promoting your brand of religion then you might find that our wide open tolerance is too much for you.

Bert.


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Subject: RE: Religious (or otherwise) Doorknockers. (BS)
From: Penny S.
Date: 18 May 99 - 12:18 PM

I know I implied that there was some insensitivity involved in one JW visit. Against that I have to say that the members I know personally are good people, and very generous with their time. They do occasionally bring up the subject, and I have read through some of the literature. Some of their ideas are very odd, and the teachings are very much opposed to other churches having anything pleasing to God in them. I was once accosted outside the Quaker Meeting House by two dear ladies from the Kingdom Hall next door, and I did try to persuade them to take some of our leaflets in exchange for theirs, so they would understand our position, but they told me that they were forbidden to read other churches' literature. One of the better things I have noticed about them is that they do not dwell on hell as a way to bring people to salvation. I suppose the basic problem is that they do seem to pick on times to call when it is inconvenient, and it is so difficult to end the conversation politely.


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Subject: RE: Religious (or otherwise) Doorknockers. (BS)
From: Allan C.
Date: 18 May 99 - 12:09 PM

"Inefficient" is totally correct. Anyone who has done any doorknocking knows how inefficient it is. It is like telemarketing: a game of numbers. You bang on this many doors or make that many phone calls and you get this percentage of positive responses. People who have done it for awhile usually figure out that being an ass with a prospect doesn't pay off. Unfortunately, a large number of the folks doing charity collecting, religious information dissemination, or candy selling, etc. are not professionals or haven't done this regularly. They are learning as they go - often at your expense. But it also costs them something. It is VERY difficult to not take a refusal (no matter how polite; no matter how rude) personally. It can eat at you. It can demoralize you. It can sometimes really hurt. My heart goes out to those poor "gluttons for punishment". I have done a little door-to-door and a little telemarketing. Most recently I had a part time job as a telemarketer. I quit because I just couldn't bring myself to twist the truth to sell the overpriced crap I was offering. While my sympathy exists for them, I still have no compunction about slamming a door or hanging up on someone who doesn't hear "No." the first time.


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Subject: RE: Religious (or otherwise) Doorknockers. (BS)
From: kb
Date: 18 May 99 - 11:59 AM

I dislike having someone show up at my door or call me on the phone, trying to persuade me that I need what they have to offer, but God told us to go out and spread the Gospel to all nations. I'm not good at 'doorknocking' but I believe that God is leading me to spread 'Christianity' another way. But, as a Christian, I certainly feel outnumbered here. Today is my first time ever on a chat line, hence my total ineffectiveness.


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Subject: RE: Religious (or otherwise) Doorknockers. (BS)
From: Jon W.
Date: 18 May 99 - 11:13 AM

Gee, I thought Kat was trying to "out" me. I've got a number of nephews, first cousins once removed, and young friends serving LDS missions. Of course things have changed a lot and they don't do nearly as much door-knocking as I did 25 years ago when I was on my mission. The point is, there are those who are searching for something in their spiritual lives, and for those of us who feel we have something to offer them, door-knocking is one (very inefficient) way of finding them. I've never found it necessary (since my own mission) to be rude to the Jehovah's Witnesses - they are sincere in their beliefs, I am sincere in mine, and we leave it at that. The ones who worry me are the exploited young kids who are selling candy or cheap merchandise for outrageous prices and retaining a very small bit (if any) of the high profits. Also telemarketers - thank heavens for caller ID.

Jon W.


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Subject: RE: Religious (or otherwise) Doorknockers. (BS)
From: Sheye
Date: 18 May 99 - 10:37 AM

I think I started this...

A polite "I'm not interested thank you" usually does work. My beef, be it religion, vacuum cleaner salesman, or one of the 8000 charity workers, is that if you come to my time, a "no thank you" shall be deemed adequate dismissal as I did not invite you. Any further attempt on the part of the visitor will be met by less than gracious conduct on my part.

Lately the charities have been the worse. I have chosen to limit my donations to 4 charities. I say no to the others, and they start with, "don't you care about...??"

I got caught in the Denver airport a few months ago. I noticed a fellow perched beside a statue, in almost the same position, and laughingly told him that if he held his hand like so, they'd be a matched set. He asked me if I was flying and handed me a booklet about how that was a really bad idea, and a Watchtower. I handed it back, but wasn't quite in the same spirit I had been in.

Joe, can you identity a 30 gauge by the barrel? In my younger years, I worked for Surface Rights one summer. My job was to assess environmental damage done to farmland by oil companies. (In Alberta, a farmer owns the top 6 inches of the land only.) I stopped by one farm that I hadn't phoned ahead of time and was met by a shotgun at the door. It was homecountry so I quickly spurted out, "I'm (my dad)'s daughter! He put the gun down and apologized profusely, and insisted I stay for breakfast. That's not the best way to start a day, a heavy breakfast and all!

Sheye


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Subject: RE: Religious (or otherwise) Doorknockers. (BS)
From: katlaughing
Date: 18 May 99 - 09:11 AM

Dear Art,

I did not want to "out" you or Carol in this thread. I guess I should have been a bit less circumspect in my earlier posts about Mudcatters being related to Witnesses.

I am sorry for any hurt I may have caused. Please forgive me.

kat


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Subject: RE: Religious (or otherwise) Doorknockers. (BS)
From: Tony Burns
Date: 18 May 99 - 06:39 AM

Thanks for bringing some sense here Art. I too have been troubled by the hostility voiced in this thread. It is also a little amazing that some folks claim to try to convert the doorknockers. Exactly the thing they object to that brought the person to the door in the first place.

There is no need to be any ruder than closing the door (or hanging up the phone) and only if the person won't take a polite refusal.


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Subject: RE: Religious (or otherwise) Doorknockers. (BS)
From: Art Thieme
Date: 18 May 99 - 02:43 AM

Me again folks. In my previous post I was trying to be facetious as hell. I'm rather amazed and a bit hurt by the vindictiveness of some of my favorite folks here in this thread. My wife of 32 years, Carol, is a Jehovah's Witness and I'm an atheist Jew. We agree to disagree. Her religion bugs the hell out of me, but the Witnesses are some of the nicest people I know---as long as we don't talk religion. (They know to leave me alone where that topic is concerned.) Some people just have an amazing need for certainty in their lives. One thing that the Witnesses are is certain. Their rule book, the Bible, has all the answers as they see it. Personally, I've always felt that in the game of life the directions don't come on the box! But fragile folks need to KNOW---it's something that gives them a bit of control over stuff that I'm content to see as simply a mystery that I may never have an answer for. Just is what is--as Gordon Bok has often said to me.

2 years ago, while recovering from one of 7 surgeries I've had in the last decade, I was given blood thinners to lessen the chance of blood clots. That caused (from my point of view) a situation similar to Catspaw's; I got 12 pints of blood before the thing got cotterized and plugged. All the time I was in the hospital the Witnesses took care of Carol and came to visit me in the ICU often. They did that even though I was getting tons o' blood. Some of you might know that somewhere in the damn Bible it says don't take in blood---so they reject all of that. Drives me nuts---as I said. They were always visiting me all the time I was getting the transfusions that I'm sure offended them but that I'm sure saved my life. And I'll always defend their right to voice and practice their beliefs---as off the mark as my common sense tells me they are.

I mean no disrespect to you people. I just think that live & let live is a better way to go about things like this than starting this quite useless thread. Hell, no, it isn't easy sometimes dealing with people with whom we differ. But as Stan Rogers so eloquently said speaking of another difficult thing to make work---marriage, "What the hell's it (life) for." It's the difficulty that makes it so damn interesting. I'd be bored otherwise.

And I paraphrase Stan's song once more: I want to see Carol's smiling face 45 years from now!

Art Thieme


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Subject: RE: Religious (or otherwise) Doorknockers. (BS)
From: Rick Fielding
Date: 18 May 99 - 01:17 AM

Charlie, I ain't a "Witness" but I'd come to your house for the intelligent conversation. Now where can I get my hands on a couple of "Watchtowers?"


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Subject: RE: Religious (or otherwise) Doorknockers. (BS)
From: Charlie Baum
Date: 18 May 99 - 12:54 AM

It was in the early '80s when a couple of Witnesses came to our door, and my roommate and I were having a quiet afternnon that needed livening up, so we thought we'd invite them in and try to convert them to Judaism. We had quite a library at our disposal to disprove their interpretations: everything from Thomas Aquinas to Thomas Merton to a complete Babylonian Talmud. After a few hours, they left, and they were questioning some of the fundamental(ist) tenets of their faith. Was it the requirements of circumcision that prevented their conversion to Judaism? We mentioned that my roommate knew all the Rabbinic requirements but that he had a unsteady hand when it came to slicing bread.

-Charlie Baum, always in search of a good theological debate


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Subject: RE: Religious (or otherwise) Doorknockers. (BS)
From: Rick Fielding
Date: 18 May 99 - 12:41 AM

I Absolutely can NOT force myself to be rude to any door to door folks - religious or otherwise. Now I hear a small chorus in the background murmuring: "about once a week you can get pretty sarcastic right here!" It's different though. Blatant insensitivity delivered in an abrupt manner really gets me steamed, and I'm sure my sarcasm goes over the head of the intended recipient...but the worst that can be said about door to door folks is that they can be persistant.
I sold encyclopedias for one day and I know what it's like to get told "perform an anitomical impossibility on yourself." Nope, when it's the "Witnesses" I just explain that my personal spirituality doesn't require a "middleman", but if I've got the time I'll ask them in, and confuse them even more!


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Subject: RE: Religious (or otherwise) Doorknockers. (BS)
From: katlaughing
Date: 18 May 99 - 12:32 AM

Oh, well, Campfire, how fitting, since Dog spells God backwards...some poetic justice there, eh?

Joe, nice to hear from you, but somehow I don't think you've been passing out books by the Holy Pappy, as my dad says, when you go knocking on doors.**Big Grin**

Denver didn't used to be so fanatical! Or are you just pulling our collective leg? Isn't it about time for you to go back to California? And, how was the folkconcert?

katlaughing


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Subject: RE: Religious (or otherwise) Doorknockers. (BS)
From: campfire
Date: 18 May 99 - 12:17 AM

I have a 120 pound Lab/Dane cross that does most of my discouraging for me. He's really quite friendly, but he does like to "announce" guests. If I don't want to talk to them, I neglect to tell him to go lie down. He stands in the doorway barking his fool head off, I pretend I can't control him, and not many stick around very long.

It probably isn't fair ro give DOGS a bad name, but it is quite effective.

campfire


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Subject: RE: Religious (or otherwise) Doorknockers. (BS)
From: Bewildered in Denver
Date: 17 May 99 - 10:54 PM

Hey, you guys are speaking in a disparaging manner of what I've done for a living for the last 25 years! Tonight, I had to yell over the fence at somebody's house because the people wouldn't open their front door. These Denver people seem to like their guns, so I'm a little bit careful here. I went to a folk concert the other night, and got a lecture from the guy next to me about the necessity of handguns. Ah, the life of this door-to-door bureaucrat has been perilous at times. Next time the doorbell rings, be sympathetic. It just could be poor old Joe Offer.
-Joe Offer, gumshoe-


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Subject: RE: Religious (or otherwise) Doorknockers. (BS)
From: John Hindsill
Date: 17 May 99 - 10:03 PM

Usually I point to the Mezuzah on the door (which they should have seen); if that doesn't work I tell them that I am Jewish and not interested; if that still doesn't work, I sweetly but firmly say, "Please don't make me be rude by closing the door while you are talking." Most usually works.

Mrs. John had a near evangelical experience when a lady in her art class kept pressing Messianic Judaism tracts on her. When she demurred, the lady decided not to be be her friend any longer.

A couple of weeks ago in my cardiac rehab session, a born again minister was telling me that his congregants were going to learn Jewish songs & dances from four [count 'em, 4] Jews for Jesus. I allowed as we had a name for Jews for Jesus in my circle...'Christian'. "Mm, yes." he said, and quickly moved on to the next apparatus.


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Subject: RE: Religious (or otherwise) Doorknockers. (BS)
From: Jeri
Date: 17 May 99 - 08:56 PM

Honestly, I don't like people who try to sell religion any more than those who call uninvited and try to get me to switch phone service, but I try not to be rude to anyone.

I just tell them I'm not interested, smile, and let them give me pamphlets. They leave just as quickly, and nobody's day is ruined.

Les Barker has done a really funny song about this.


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Subject: RE: Religious (or otherwise) Doorknockers. (BS)
From: The Shambles
Date: 17 May 99 - 07:38 PM

Sandy

I find it hard to believe that you could be rude to anybody, but that is the point really. We all know that it is difficult to be rude, face to face with a stranger, we have to overcome years of conditioning and that is exactly why they come to our doors, especially with children in tow.


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Subject: RE: Religious (or otherwise) Doorknockers. (BS)
From: Banjer
Date: 17 May 99 - 06:59 PM

I once heard that if you make a chalk outline drawing of a body (like the police do in a homicide investigation) in front of the door and toss some tracts and leaflets around most will not knock!


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