The most wonderful part of Jason and me (yes, that is correct grammar) finding each other is that we can have fun together no matter what we are doing. When we were first married we literally spent every Friday evening at WalMart. Then, when we became home-owners we traded in WalMart for Menards/Lowe's/Home Depot.
Another thing we started doing, even before we owned our own home, was to take in Sioux City's Home Show whenever it occurred. We have learned from past experiences NOT to take the children to these events as they don't find it nearly as interesting or stimulating as we do. . .so when the latest Home Show occurred we got a babysitter.
Jason's only rule for me when going to these things is to NOT fill out ANY drawing forms of any kind. What?! He doesn't like free stuff, you ask? Nope, not the case. It seems like every time I have filled one out in the past, we have WON!!! And by "won", I mean that someone has called the house, I answered, and "Oh my gosh Jason! We won a cruise!!" No, really, we "did!" What? You ask. You never heard about us going on a cruise? Well, that's because we didn't. See, when you "win" these things, it really means that while, yes, you won a cruise, you also have won the right to pay to get there, plus they want you to spend some time listening to a sales pitch and spend some of your hard-earned dollars on a vacation home that you didn't know you needed. So, I am no longer allowed to "win" stuff. ;)
This time around I was a very good girl. We looked at all of the cool ways to update our house, and made sure not to miss a booth. And I only signed up for two things.....the main drawing as you walk in the door (we won a $50 gift card to a landscaping store....and it's legit) and a drawing to win an emergency kit at a booth filled with fire safety items (hey, we have to support our local fire fighters right?!)
As you can imagine, about a week later I got a call on my cell phone. "Hi, can I speak to your mom or dad"" says the caller. Hahaha! I figured it was a telemarketer, so I handed the phone to Jason....he loves those calls. :) He spoke to the caller for about five minutes and when he got off he said that it was someone from the fire safety booth at the Home Show. We had won a safety kit! The caller asked if he could drop it by that Friday, and also look around our house and give us some fire safety tips. Sure! Why not! It sounded like something the kids would get a kick out of....a real, live, firefighter in our house!
So Friday comes and our appointment shows up. Ummm, NOT a firefighter. And it becomes quite apparent that he is also not from our local fire station either. So, he comes in and gives us the safety kit, which he goes through with us to make sure we know what each part contains. Then he has the kids walk him through the house, asking them questions about how they would get out in case of a fire. He was very thorough and I was quite pleased with my kids' answers. So far, so good, right?
Then the kids get bored and go to play. The gentlemen starts talking to us about our current smoke alarms. He takes one down and essentially starts telling us how bad they are. How most fire-related deaths occur because of faulty smoke alarms and how the ones we currently have fall into the category of the ones that fail. So he brings out this binder FULL of newspaper articles of all these people, mostly kids, who have perished in these fires! And I'm completely horrified! OMG! My kids are going to die in a fire and I am a horrible parent because we have these cheap smoke detectors and I am just never going to forgive myself if something happened to them! So basically, this guy could sell me anything at this point.
Then he brings out matches, a piece of newspaper, and a glass jar. He lights the paper on fire, blows it out, and drops it in the jar. Then he holds our smoke detector up to it. NOTHING HAPPENS! OMG! I can't believe I have lived in the house for SIX YEARS with these non-functioning smoke detectors! Then, he brings out his product. It's now been about an hour since he got here, but I don't even care that it's past the kids' bedtime because this man is going to help me save their lives!
He holds his smoke detector up to the jar that barely has any smoke left in it, and BAM! It goes off like there's a three-alarm fire in the house. HOOK. LINE. AND SINKER. I'm in.
He brings out that awful binder again, and now shows us articles about HIS product and how it has saved thousands of people over the years. He asks us if we would like him to run the numbers and get to the bottom line of what it would cost us to have this life-saving system. UH DUH!
$3,000. That is what it would cost us to save our children's lives in the case of a fire. $3,000 tonight. Tonight. Write him a check and we can get started thinking about our children's futures and not have to fear the worst. Such a small price to pay for peace of mind right? And my husband says, no thanks. WHAT?! ARE YOU NUTS! DO YOU WANT OUR KIDS TO DIE!?? The fire safety gentleman can't believe it either! He is just STUNNED that we are going to pass up this great opportunity! And I am shooting my husband daggers. I just can't believe that he'll be able to sleep in this house again, knowing that it's not safe.
So the man leaves. And as Jason shuts and locks the door behind him he says, "Geez, I thought he'd never leave. I'd almost rather the Kirby vacuum people came back than listen to him one more minute!" (Ok, side note...that one was my fault too. I let the Kirby people in one summer to give us a "free" carpet shampoo. 3 and 1/2 hours later.......) I let him have it! "I can't believe you wouldn't spend the money to keep your kids safe!" And on, and on. and on. He is just smiling at me.
Once I calm down, he explains to me why he is the logical one in the family, and picks apart every statement that the fire safety guy said....starting with the fact that our smoke detectors are not the same ones from any of the stories he told us about. Jason goes online and searches out websites that do, indeed, back up what Jason is telling me. Then, he shows me what it would cost for us to buy the same detectors and install them ourselves. $400. That's a LOOOONG way from $3000!
And that, my friends, is why Jason and I are so perfect for each other. :)
And darn that man for making me feel like such a horrible mother!
And ok, no more filling out drawing forms at home shows.