The doorbell rang this morning. When I opened it there stood a chap holding a framed photo, which he held out in my direction. I made a point of not taking it, having read about the tactic of putting the goods for sale into somebody’s hand and then standing back out of reach.
“Hi.” Says he. “Do you recognise this?”
I peered a little closer.
“Yes.” I replied. “It’s an aerial shot of our house.”
“It was taken in September.” Says he, smiling and nodding. “I’ve got a Cessna light aircraft.”
I knew what was coming next, but waited for him to make the next move. I felt a bit angry at the intrusion and rather surprised that somebody who could afford his own airplane would be reduced to knocking on doors hassling for money. Perhaps Christmas had cost more than he’d bargained for…
“My pictures are usually fifty nine pounds, but today I can sell this for just thirty nine pounds. Maybe buy it for your partner’s birthday present?”
“Ooh.” I took a deep breath. “I don’t think so. Bit pricey I’m afraid.”
“What about twenty five then?” His eyes lit up with hope to see our front door had stayed open. “Go and ask your partner what he thinks.”
I shook my head, knowing what Sam would tell him to do with it. However, he still wasn’t giving up. Somehow I knew he wouldn’t be going away until he had flogged it.
“You can have the price I usually give to pensioners if you like?”
“Oh yeah?” Says I. “What’s that?”
“Twenty quid, frame and all.”
Actually it wasn’t a bad picture to be fair. Sam heard our voices and came downstairs to find out what was going on. He saw the picture, nodded, and surprisingly produced twenty quid without a murmur. We’ve now got a framed photo of our house from above, but actually…do you think this bloke had a bit of a cheek, hassling people for money in the privacy of their own homes? Leon laughed and told us we were mugs for handing over the money, now that there’s Google Earth and printers, and that he could have done one for us for £15!
Would you have shaken your head and closed the door, or parted with £59 straight away? Perhaps this can be my new sales tactic for 2018 – knock on doors, shove my books in people’s hands, and then stand well back!