We sold a lot of stuff today. Starting early this morning, people came in to tell us we had nice stuff, make a pile, and then start backing up about it not being that nice. That’s why I don’t price anything, it doesn’t really matter. I do, however, judge a man by his negotiating skills. And I am left feeling judged as well. Measured, really.
I’m constantly reminded why I left sales. Then I’m reminded why I went back, and then why I left, and why this cycle keeps repeating. Because the whole plate is a sales gig no matter how you look at it. But, before I get a fourth side built on this soapbox I’m going to cut it.
I want to pull my little Scotty camper off by a creek and sit with my bamboo pole in the water and a guitar in my lap, maybe a Steinbeck novel on my knee while I wait for my blueberry bush. It could be a strategy full of lean times, but this is a life free of selling oneself.
Still, I think it’s good to be nice. It’s always better to be nice. The best sales experiences don’t feel like sales encounters. And I’m wrong to think deals must have a winner and loser. They don’t. I keep telling myself this. And even if someone isn’t losing, they aren’t being pulled by the ear or itched behind the shoulder, either.
You gotta put a price on things, ask for business, and protect a puddle of profit where you see it. It’s how the whole thing turns. I don’t like it for a second, I’m an artist and an idealist and I just wish for people to need me. And I know they do sometimes. But in a world where my CD goes for about a quart of Gatorade, I’d need to do either enough asking or enough work for someone else not afraid to do their own asking. We all sell, or work for someone who does. My friend Knox says that all the time.
So anyway, a guy walks up and finds a few things he likes at my yard sale, haggles my price, and then wants to know my “best” on all of it. Another guy even told me, “You got these stuff priced where I’d need to sell it at.”
“I thought that was the idea.”
And to the first guy, “Best for you, I suppose. Because I liked it where it was.”
I’m hanging in there though. I don’t like sales, never did. Sales is serious work. To those good at it, you have a natural advantage at life in a lot of ways. To those that suck at it, you have to think of something.
Ashley, after reading this, would like to add: ”I wish everybody was a Care Bear.” She thinks it should be the title. No way, I said.