Just been out to collect Avon brochures. I only had 8 to collect but out of those 8, the first 4 houses I got no answer and the rest didn’t place an order anyway. Admittedly 4 of them have never placed an order with me in the three campaigns I’ve done so far so I feel justified in just writing them off as not interested. There’s no point in me delivering the brochure if they never plan to order. I’m not doing this to make friends, I’m doing it to help save for my next Open University module and I see no reason to waste my time as I could just as easily be putting £20 a month away from the house keeping if I’m making no more from the Avon.
As I’m due to have a baby (my second) in 5 weeks, long walks are hard work and my customers know this as they always ask me how long I have left. What’s most irritating is that I don’t just dump the brochure and go (I have heard reports of this) and I do say when I’ll be back to collect them, checking this is okay with them. Yet it seems to much effort to leave the brochure outside (I even provide a water proof bag per brochure) if they’ll be out, even out of courtesy, for some people or they want extra time to view the book so I have to make an extra trip out (last time I checked good manners were bloody free and certainly don’t hurt) and then when I do they still haven’t placed an order. Would it be out-of-order for me to say no to extra time as it’s not like 2 days is stingy?
I now find myself sympathising with reps who have jacked it in after a few campaigns if this is how they were treated. I can’t help feeling that I AM just wasting my time as I have put a lot of effort into setting myself up and trying to build a customer base. In the long-term though, I do want to go back to work eventually (once the youngest child is 8 years old) and I need something more to put on my CV than ‘housewife and mother for 10 years between 2008 and 2018’ if I expect to be even considered to be employable when that time comes.
More to the Point…
However, that moan now over, it brings me to the point that Reap Paden and Al Stefanelli have raised on their last couple of podcasts about jibes from the atheist community that we who dare to be outspoken are making them ‘look bad‘ or that posts I have made in the past to UAF, have been off-topic and not furthering ‘our cause’. I have never tried to represent any but my own views. I speak (err…write) for me without any hope of people ‘following me’. I DO want people to start actually thinking critically and for themselves and to stop hiding behind masks of pseudo-respectability because of what they believe society expects them to think.
I often have something to say on various issues which is why I write this blog and I will throw my hands up and admit to being stroppy and opinionated, but who doesn’t have opinions? I generally call the people who claim to have ‘no opinions’ liars because every time I have spoken with them, those non-existent opinions seem remarkably forthcoming. If people want to listen to me or read what I write I consider it a bonus. If people don’t want to then that’s also fine. What isn’t fine is being told I somehow have no right to air my views or, in some cases, even HAVE those views. I have been ‘unfriended’ by so many people now, because I happen to disagree with them, that it’s not even funny.
So, next time, one of ‘our own’ sees fit to comment on your blog, youtube channel or podcast and tells you that you’re ‘doing it wrong’ ask them what ‘THEY’RE doing. Ask them also why they feel entitled to tell someone that they’re insufficient to do something they have not had the nerve to even try? It is hard work enough to be outspoken against the religious community but to have those same asinine non-arguments about why we must not be so forthright or outspoken thrown at us by atheists who don’t even have the nerve to be open about their disbelief with friends or their own families, local community, let alone online, is an insult to say the least and it’s a battle I am not prepared to fight.
Why Do I Do This?
Reap, Al, and I each do what we do in our own time, despite the personal risk, and we all have our own reasons for doing it. I’m not a spokesperson for atheism or atheists and I’m not trying to be. I just say things how I see them and the more I see of the harm that organised religion is doing to the world, environment and humanity, the more angered and dissatisfied I become with it all. The knock-on effect is that I become less able to sit quietly and I certainly cannot ‘just ignore it’ or ‘let it go‘ as I have been told to do on more occasions than I care to remember so I speak out against what I see as blatant injustice and hypocrisy. I will NOT just shut up and ignore it all in favour of focusing on my own little world just because that suits other people.