Thursday, June 24, 2010

Use your powers to do good!

There are times in this business when you can use your sharply honed skills to do some good for others. Sort of like when the Grinch's heart grew three times as big and he saved Christmas! That happened to me right on the street where I live.

About a year ago my neighbor was in a car accident. Fortunately he was ok, but his Toyota Sienna Mini Van was totalled. This seat survived unscathed and my neighbor put it out to the curb for trash one summer night. Seeing this perfectly good car seat down the street, my trash picking instincts kicked in! I walked down to his house and like a good neighbor, informed him that he may be throwing away money. He agreed with me, but being a young and busy family guy, he claimed not to have the time to sell it. I owed him a favor, so what better way to pay him back then to sell it for him? I told him not to worry...I would take care of the sale. I dragged the heavy sucker back down to my house and took some quick digital photos. By the end of the evening the Toyota seat was up on Craigslist.

As days past into several weeks, I wondered if I had seriously overestimated the huge pent-up demand for mini-van rear seats! I ended up living with that stupid seat in my garage for over a month. But I was determined to sell the thing, I had boldly placed my "wheeler-dealer" reputation on the line! A few more weeks past and after starting at $75, it finally sold for $36. (They sell for $175 at Toyota). The buyer told me he was going to retro-fit it into the bed of his pick-up truck. Hey whatever floats your boat, right?

Thinking ahead, I knew my buddy would not accept the cash from me, so I cleverly converted the profits into a case of his favorite imported beer. I knew he would not refuse this! When he answered his front door he found me with beer in hand grinning from ear to ear! He couldn't believe I sold the dumb thing and laughed as he accepted his profits from the sale. I even had a little money leftover and treated myself to a six-pack. This was my sales commission! I sipped that brew with a sense of pride, I helped out my neighbor by converting his trash into beer: a win-win for both of us!

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