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Everything King: Flop sweats, small talk and de-cluttering comes with a stranger entering my home

In this week's Everything King, Wendy wonders if delivery, repair or tradespeople who come into her home judge her

I have a question.

Do you think delivery people or repair people or tradespeople who come into your home judge you?

Do they even really notice the surroundings or are they just concentrating on the job at hand?

I have always wondered.

First of all, I hate having strangers in my home because it makes me uncomfortable.

If I have to book an appointment for someone to come to repair an appliance, or the TV or do some construction work, I break into a flop sweat. I go into intense cleaning mode and de-clutter mode in case they will think me to be a bad housekeeper or a hoarder.

I assume they are sizing me up.

I just know this is what they are thinking.

“Yikes! THAT’S what she wears to answer the door?”

Then I can hear them saying to themselves: “I shouldn’t have to take my shoes off HERE — her carpet is already filthy.”

My worst fear is that they will ask me a question to which I don’t know the answer like: “Where is the fuse box?”

I remember once a cable television person came to check my computer set up. I assumed he would just need access to the router/tv area. When he asked to see where the TV line came into the house, I was frozen in fear. He informed me it is usually in the basement.

My mind raced to the storage area where everything from my out of season clothes to the Christmas tree to spare chairs is shoved into. If he opens that door — a concussion is sure to follow. I didn’t have three weeks to get it in order so he could work in there.

I mumbled something about “Yeah, I don’t think that’s happening because you’ll never make it out alive” and he ended up drilling holes through my garage instead for the cord. I don’t really remember — I was ashamed. It has been years and I still haven’t cleaned out the space so I guess I managed to get over it.

And, is there any maintenance etiquette?

Am I supposed to chat with them and make small talk. Should I feign interest in what they are doing? Do I go with them to the area of the house where they are working or should I stay on the couch watching CNN? Am I expected to hand them tools? It is all so upsetting.

I wonder if they all get together at the end of the day and discuss their dumbest customers.

“Hey, I had one who didn’t know her router from her dongle!” (hardee har har)

“Mine didn’t know where the fuse box was”?

“I think I had that loser last year!” (snort)

It is just mortifying to imagine!

I think Otis, the cat has the best idea. When the doorbell rings he is gone like a shot, upstairs, for a nap until they are long gone venturing back downstairs only when the man with the noisy tools has left and we are happy, once again, in our blissful ignorance.