No, I am not talking about garage sales or illegal items.
Like the rest of the free world, I read two posts about the various sides of the multi-level marketing parties yesterday -- you know, the Pampered Chef, Silpada, and most recently Jamberry businesses and all of the companies like that out there.
We've all been to them at one time or another or seen the catalogs passed around at work.
On one side of the issue is Rachael Pavlik who has had enough of the constant party invites and social media onslaught from friends asking her to buy, host, sell and otherwise support their home-based businesses. Her amusing article on Scary Mommy, 3-D Lashes, Jamberry & Other Ways to Lose Facebook Friends, has gone ape doodoo viral, and I thoroughly enjoyed reading it.
BonBon break hosts a thoughtful response article called Nails, Mascara and Other Reasons I Won't Unfriend You On Facebook, in which Laura O'Rourke makes a case for supporting your fellow moms' choice of job as a feminist issue. I also enjoyed reading this and thought she made some really good points.
So what I'm saying is that I'm wishy washy and like to avoid taking sides for fear of conflict.
No wait. I mean, There is a third side to this debate, only we're not debating much because our undies are not even the least bit simmering.
The moms like me who don't sell these types of products, and who don't support friends strictly because it is the right feminist thing to do.
The moms like me who are not bothered in the least when invited to parties or promoted to online by friends who do sell it.
Here's why home-based sales parties are a non issue for me
I don't have that many friends. Seriously, is it normal to have so many friends that the volume of party requests is that out of hand? I know I am on the lower end of the average number of girlfriends scale, but even if I jumped to the middle of the bell curve, I don't think it would be that unbearable. I think the stress of having that many freaking friends would be more taxing to me than the residual sales/party requests.
I prefer buying shit at someone's house than at the mall. The last time I enjoyed a trip to the mall, I was 11, and needed to restock my Lisa Frank sticker collection. I'm 39 now and would much rather sit in someone's living room drinking mimosas with a few like-minded ladies and purchasing jewelry or bags to satisfy the upcoming birthday and holiday gift list bearing down on me, than go to the mall.
It freaks men out, and I enjoy that.Men don't understand women gathering in large groups to sniff candles, apply makeup or otherwise test out their friend's wares. It makes my husband itchy and confused to even talk about it and this amuses me. Husbands will most likely leave the house with your kids if you host such a party so they don't have to witness the actual happening. This is what I call hostess benefits.
I like most of the stuff they are selling. These places know women. They know what gets us all excited and that is what they sell. I like costume jewelry, bags and cooking doodads and I'm proud to say it! Writing this article made me remember the Avon lady I left behind when we moved, and now I am jonesing for an hour alone with an Avon catalog. You can't tell me that cheap fruity lip balm and 20 different Skin So Soft products aren't mom gold.
I have no problem saying no. There are a few that are just not for me, and I have no problem declining to purchase. For instance, I bite my nails, so Jamberry doesn't have a lot of surface area to work with on my tiny man hands. I also got an invite to one recently that sold all sort of decals for your walls with sayings on them. If I see 'Be Your Own Kind of Beautiful' on the wall in my bathroom, I'm going to call up Nate Berkus and have him come take that shit down. After a quick catalog perusal I declined and that was that.
While I'm slightly afraid that this post might bring the party pushers out of the woodwork and the invites will start pouring in, I'll just politely decline those I don't want to participate in. If I feel like going to a party but decide not to buy anything, I'll just enjoy the company, the mimosas, and if necessary, give an early goodbye wave with my man hands.
Originally published on Pecked To Death By Chickens