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Just when you think it's safe to go back in the garden

I woke up to this little ditty on the radio this morning, something that took place unnervingly close to my own home.

Verizon Solicitor Arrested For Indecent Exposure
Police in New Castle County arrested a Verizon solicitor for lewdness after witnesses reported seeing him masturbating while sitting on a street in North Wilmington.

Authorities say Daniel Chelland, 18, of a Garfield Avenue in Wilmington, was arrested Tuesday and charged with counts of lewdness after witnesses reported the indecent exposure to police. Police say Chellend was allegedly going door-to-door on Monday soliciting Verizon services in the North Graylyn Crest community when he was observed taking a break on the curb and masturbating while watching a woman working in her garden.

Neighbors told police Chelland then got up and went to a home on Knowles Road where he attempted to sell Verizon services.

By the time police arrived, Chelland had left the area. Authorities say on Tuesday they received a call about a suspicious man going door-to-door soliciting for Verizon. After a short foot chase, Chelland was arrested and linked to the lewd act on Monday.


The radio report also mentioned that Verizon "outsources solicitation" to marketing companies in the area. Which means they give Verizon uniforms and pamphlets to people hired through temp agencies. Which means there's probably not a whole lot of background checking going on before these folks are walking through our neighborhoods, knocking on our doors, seeing our children playing in the yard...and masturbating while watching us in the garden. Is anyone else disturbed and outraged about this?

Reminds me of the home security system dude who approached me a couple months ago, while my son and I were playing on the front lawn (I was doing a little gardening, too!). He came over, flashed his little Honeywell Security badge, then pulled out a clipboard and started asking all sorts of questions about our security system. He also asked if my husband was home. But my radar really started beeping when he called my son by name and "buddy." Apparently he had overheard me calling to Sweet Boy while he was knocking on the neighbor's door. The mama grizzly in me reared up and said, "You are not his buddy, so please do not call him by his name. Good bye." And we went inside and locked the door.

I saw this guy walking around the neighborhood for at least another 2 hours. And he had the balls to knock on our door again after my husband got home, so he could speak to both of us about his fancy new security system. Once again mama grizzly roared, but this time she was a raging feminist grizzly: "I do not need my husband to help me keep my family safe. And frankly, you're setting off every one of my internal security alerts, so please leave."

(OK, no, I didn't really say that out loud, but that's what was screaming inside my head, and I did forcefully ask him to go away and not return.)

Lately we've had a new solicitor knocking every day. I think most of them are political party folks, but I don't know for sure because every time someone knocks on the door, Sweet Boy and I play the "see how quiet we can be" game. Me no likey no solicitors! And this news tidbit today just reaffirms that we should perhaps start a movement to keep these folks out of our (tidy, middle class suburban) neighborhoods. Mama grizzlies unite!


*there is actually a Book Mender on staff at the library. And it's a big deal position...the children's librarian can't just slap some Scotch tape on there.

* it’s not smart to hang up your swimsuit without rinsing it first because the crazy-chlorine from the YMCA pool will eat a hole right through the lycra…which is embarrassing the next time you put the suit on.


the way Sweet Boy's entire face jiggles when he runs around the playground.


  1. See? This is why I don't garden. Sorry neighbors, but I refuse to have a pretty yard just so I can be used as masturbation material. I mean, really? Jerk off in the shower *before* work, like the rest of the human race.


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