A few years ago Linda organized a block-wide yard sale. By ‘block-wide,’ I mean maybe three of the neighbors, Linda included. Linda’s goals were to sell off some of the stuff we no longer needed or played with, make some money, and (I am guessing here) make room for more things she could use to redecorate the house, which may have indirectly helped her launch her blog.
Linda succeeded on all counts, and exceeded the other neighbors in the profit category. Ha ha! We vaulted into a higher tax bracket than you suckers, by 185 bucks!
So while Linda was peddling her used wares – and I mean our stuff, not herself – I suggested Sam go to the end of the block and set up a lemonade stand. It would be a strategic spot where he could catch people walking back from a Cubs game on a warm summer afternoon. Given many of them may have been drinking beer at the game, they might be ready for a lemonade on their way back home.
I took a small cooler of beer and sat nearby as Sam and his buddy Simon hawked their lemonade. They did well. I thought he might do even better if he wagged his eyebrows and greeted the women with, “Hiya, toots, how ‘bout a drink?” Sam somehow ignored my business plan. I wondered how much I could make selling my own beer to the passersby.
Despite my keen insights, Sam made good money that day. It’s probably hard not to give a few quarters to an eager, friendly kid – especially when you’re happy from a few Old Styles at Wrigley.
Which reminds me: When I was 9 or 10, my friend Steve and I set up a lemonade stand in front of my house. The problem was, I didn’t have much lemonade mix, so of course I supplemented it with chocolate Instant Breakfast® and mixed it all together with tap water and ice.
Wow – a gray drink! I knew it was just a little unappealing, so I made a sales sign: “10 Cents a Cup — No Indian giving.” Not only did we offend any Native Americans who might have been walking through the mean streets of Wilmette, Illinois – we didn’t make a single sale.
I suggested to Steve that next time, we try strawberry.