I made a joke today on a friend's Facebook page about her being a "vampire crossed with an Amway salesperson" - based on her unrelenting status updates encouraging folks to donate blood, not in a harrassing kind of way, but definitely friendly/aggressive...but, also, with an undertone of "make the sale, no matter what".
The part about her being a "vampire" was obviously a reference to her NEED FOR BLOOD..the "Amway salesperson" part was a reference to everyone's image of a person who comes to their door selling Amway - conciliatory, fawning & deadly.
I had this fuzzy image of the Amway salesperson, ingrained in my mind, from the time I was young - I'm not sure why...movies, rumours, books - I have no idea. It became much more clear on February 14th, 1995.
I was in university, finishing up my last year at Queen's. My boyfriend (we'll call him Rocky) and I had plans that night for Valentine's Day (probably the last time I pretended to/or actually did give a shit about that particular Hallmark holiday).
We had dinner reservations for 7 pm. I got a call that afternoon from Rocky - he said he had received a call from an old friend, who was passing through town and "had something important to talk to him about" and that he and his fiancee wanted to stop by and wondered if he had plans.
Rocky told him that it was Valentine's Day and that we were going out for dinner. They said they only wanted to stop in for a few minutes, it wouldn't take too long, but he really needed to talk to Rocky. My boyfriend surmised that this guy was going to ask him to be in his wedding. OK. I was cool with that.
I arrived at Rocky's house during a crazy snowstorm, well ahead of our dinner reservation.
His friends arrived about an hour later than they said they'd arrive - but we still had some time to make our reservation.
We all met, exchanged pleasantries, chatted for about 20 minutes. The chit-chat waned and the fiancee said, "Honey, do you want to get the stuff from the car?"
My "this is weird" radar started beeping.
Rocky's friend went out to the car (in the still burgeoning snowstorm) and came back with a flipchart and markers and a box full of crap.
I suspected this was not a "Can you be my best man?" kind of visit.
He set up his shit and started his spiel. I remember it, almost to the letter.
"Do you ever drive down the 401?"
Me & Rocky: Yes
"Who is working at the fast food restaurants there?"
Me & Rocky: Um...students?
"NO!! OLD PEOPLE! OLD PEOPLE WHO HAVE NO MONEY!"
At this point, I was freaked. I knew this dude was a scammer and he was using his previous relationship with my boyfriend to sell us something.
And I was pissed off.
At this point, our dinner was fucked. And that they were using their friendship to scam someone (us!), use someone (us!) and ruin their night (ours!)!
They carried on with their presentation...they tried to convince us that the only way to have any successful way through life was by joining their team...though it took them forever to actually mention "Amway".
Once they finally named the brand, I excused myself politely, and retired to Rocky's room. His roommate Terry visited me at one point (with a rum & Coke for me, thank you very much, Terry...wherever you are, thank you!) and we were both blown away by their ridiculous display. We commisserated.
Shockingly, afterwards, Rocky was completely pissed off at me for "being rude".
Yep. I was rude. Oops.
And that was my experience with Amway. :)