I hand wrote this post almost a year ago and never got around to posting it.
It’s 7:30 on Wed, May 12th, 2010. I’m in a Comfort Inn hotel room in Alexandria, VA, sitting in my boxers and a tee shirt writing on a this legal pad. It’s a yellow legal pad with really tiny lines so I’m skipping every other line. The pen is a pretty shitty comfort inn pen but the ink doesn’t smear as I write across it, so it’s ok. I’m in complete solitude with nothing to do but sit in this hotel room and write on this legal pad. I think this circumstance would be what some people consider boring, but I’m actually content with the loneliness. I actually enjoy the silence. The AirCo is running and I have Seinfeld on the in the background so it’s not complete silence but it’s an uninterrupted though process. This is a lot of gibberish but I had a long, productive day which I’ll get into in a bit after I set the current mood.
My first impression of Alexandria is that its too humid and there are too many minorities. If I was basing my location on the skin color of its locals, I’d think I was in Mexico. What bothers me the most is the lack of English. Aside from the women at Rainbow spa, everyone in the US should speak English. I visited quite a few areas today and it is safe to say that people tend to adapt and grow to what surrounds them. I spent 4 years in Pittsburgh and now 5 after that in Philly and I couldn’t ever imagine moving to and living in Pittsburgh. If I had all the money in the world and could go anywhere, I wouldn’t choose Philly even though I think it has a lot to offer. I’m not sure what vibe I’ve been giving off recently but people seem to think I’m rich. I was standing at the beer distributor buying a case of specialty brew when a redneck holding a case of pbr asked me if I was rich buying a case like that. I replied “I’m smart and haven’t married yet and have no responsibilities, that enables me to do whatever I want.” On my sales trip today a customer asked me if I was from New York and lived in a big house after hearing my last name.
Back to my day today. I woke up at 5, showered, then put on a pair of black slacks and a white button down with a blue / gray tie. I thought I looked pretty sharp if I were attending a funeral. It was too formal of an outfit for a sales trip. I kept the slacks, lost the tie, and put on a sharp looking button down. I was on the road a bit after 6. I stopped at the Chesapeke to fill up for gas and ate a BK breakfast croissant and made a coffee with too much cream and too little sugar that tasted horrible. I was at my first stop at 8. I’m going to spare the details of my visits and just harp on some highlights. One stop I made in Baltimore reminded me of the landscape of The Wire. It’s eleven o’clock and the streets and porches are filled with unproductive people. It was kind of humorous actually. I have addresses and a gps and most of these places I haven’t been to before. I’m driving to one distribuotr and notice there aren’t many / any white people around. The Ebony Inn passes on my right and the a Hennessy billboard on my left. Toto, we aren’t in Kansas anymore.
I probably visited about 15 distributors who already sell our tools, essentially just putting a face behind the name. It wasn’t all about making sales but rather keeping future sales fresh in the buyers mind. I really have quite an opportunity at a young age to see a business work on all fronts. When I think about all the people who surround me, only a few could say that have tried to sell on their own. It’s a bit scary at first but I’ve almost grown to like it. My first step is getting these people to like me. I’m not hounding them for a sale but rather trying to introduce myself and establishing a relationship so they will continue to order from me in the future. People genuinely like me. I’m probably not pushy enough for sales but my philosophy is that they will come once they really want to do business with you. It’s funny communicating with people sober, which proved to be no problem today. Now I just need to take my banter with dealer about hand tools to talking to hotties about nonsense and bag a dime.
That was the end of that entry. In today’s paperless world, that was me throwing out 4 sheets of paper in transmitting this entry.