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Last spring at our early cinco de mayo party I had a really nice chat with a former neighbor, we caught up a bit and found out we were both selling stuff on the internet so we shared about that, I showed her my mini photo booth, we talked about profit margin goals, it was very bourgeois fabulous.

A few months later I find out through facebook that she's also representing a line of cosmetics and skin care products that slow down the effects of aging with amazing results (sigh) and this weekend I'm invited to her demonstration party, which I am SOOO not interested in. In fact I'm basically anti-interested in it, I go beyond not wanting this stuff for myself and into wishing that no woman would be interested in it. We should be proud to be aging. Hell, 100 years ago an embarassingly large percentage of women died in childbirth before they hit the ripe old age of 25, just the fact that we all hit 40 should be a "you've come a long way baby" moment. We should have an aging party to celebrate feminists who legalized birth control and pushed for maternal health standards.

I digress.

Years ago I declared that I was generally against parties that are about women selling crap to each other. I used to attend politely if I had nothing better to do, until one Saturday I found myself at a party where presenter/seller interrupted the hour-long jewelry commercial to tell us how being saved by the blood of Christ was really what got her going, and this necklace business was just something she could do to make sure her family had the money for her to stay home with the kiddos like Jesus intended. How each day she dwelled on the fact that Christ was nailed to the cross for her sins, proving that God had a plan, and surely that plan involves imported silver plated bracelets. Those weren't her exact words but that's what I gathered, and I also had a God moment, which felt like He was telling me to never go to one of these pyramid-scheme selling crap parties again.

I'll go to cooking show events, since I buy kitchen stuff anyway and there's usually pretty good food. But only if the host is someone who I've hung out with for non-commercial reasons in the past year. Seriously.

Digressed again. This is why my journal sucks.

I think too many women are pretending like these shopping parties are fun and we need to be honest with ourselves and each other, especially when our friends act excited about anti-aging lotion. I hoped we'd all see how ridiculous we looked when we saw Uncle Rico's "natural enhancement solution" in Napoleon Dynamite. But no, my neighbor not only invited me to her party, she's sending me facebook messages about how she would love to catch up with me and really hopes I show up on Saturday. The question to you friends: how honest should I be?

Correct party invite response is...

No response, just don't show up.
Say I'm busy/washing my hair
Be honest. Product is not for me.
Be really honest. Entire plan is bad for SOCIETY AS A WHOLE

I know, I know. Don't be "that feminist" who has to be all crazy and go on a soapbox about a simple facebook invite. I can't help it. It's not like a switch I can turn off, people.



( 14 comments — Leave a comment )
Sep. 6th, 2013 04:24 pm (UTC)
I think you should say "sorry, but I'm really not into $product. Maybe we could catch up some other time, how about $idea-for-catching-up". That is, if you like this person and want to catch up; otherwise just the sorry part.
Sep. 6th, 2013 04:57 pm (UTC)
^that's pretty much what I was going to say

also cool icon :)
Sep. 7th, 2013 01:05 am (UTC)
Sep. 6th, 2013 04:57 pm (UTC)
The only types of those parties I find fun are the sex toy ones. Cause who couldn't use a few good sex toys. :)
Sep. 7th, 2013 04:37 pm (UTC)
With the added advantage that one is extremely unlikely to hear about the blood of Christ interjected into a Rabbit demonstration. Err, except for the "oh, God, oh, God" jokes.
Sep. 6th, 2013 05:07 pm (UTC)
I want to encourage you to be That Feminist! Rar! But there are practicalities.
Sep. 6th, 2013 07:16 pm (UTC)
She's not gonna take your refusal personally. It's the equivalent of job networking in my opinion; if you can't help, you can't help, but if you happen to be in the market for anti aging products you might as well buy them from her.
Sep. 6th, 2013 10:29 pm (UTC)
Call her on her bullshit! Say you're busy but suggest an alternate time to "catch up."
Sep. 7th, 2013 12:23 am (UTC)
Sep. 7th, 2013 12:23 am (UTC)
If that whole God thing happened to me at a party, my friends would not be surprised when I got up and left.
Sep. 7th, 2013 02:14 am (UTC)
Aging is scary exactly because we haven't done it for very long in our evolution

we're just now discovering the genetic horrors that were always awaiting humankind, but we died too quickly to know.
Sep. 7th, 2013 04:12 am (UTC)
I chose the response I did because every other response has a "sales" comeback, and if you don't want to be sold to, it's best not to engage on those terms at all, in my experience with sales-type people.

Truthfully, they are bad for society, and I feel bad because the people selling are often deceived, or deceiving others, and that's not my bag. But I also don't like to sit and refute every sales pitch, so I just don't answer anymore.
Sep. 8th, 2013 01:41 am (UTC)
I layer my responses:

General fb invite: no response
Directed message + we should catch up: thanks for thinking of me, but not my thing, how about we catch up by doing X instead?
Nagging messages: Block
Sep. 9th, 2013 02:11 pm (UTC)
This. If the only social interact she wants to have involves cajoling you into buying enough of a product you don't want/need that she she gets a "free gift" for being a hostess, you're probably not that good of friends anyway. I hate those parties. Blarg.
( 14 comments — Leave a comment )

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