Is it a coincidence that any food that is bad for you comes in loud packaging?

Think about it here in class.  The best snacks being passed around are the crinkliest.  I am bothered by this on more than one level.  A sonic manifestation for the guilt of indulgence.

I’m waiting to fail up one more time.

I have a kiosk at Costco.  I sell you on the idea that a design consultant will come to your home and measure your windows, dazzle you with samples and hold your hand while you and your family envision your new window treatments in all their glory and how much they will cost at no obligation.

It’s kind of intense.  Whoever you are, I’ve been watching you for somewhere between 15 and 75 feet depending on how busy it is.  By the time you get to me, I’ve sized you up and have an impression as well as an idea of what’s going on in your cart and what it’s contents may say about you.  I look at your shoes and how you’re dressed.  Your watch and jewelry.  Many fall short of the ideal of sartorial splendor.  It begins with eye contact and then it becomes guess and instinct.  Intuition.  If I make eye contact with you I may already have figured out what to say.  As often as not, I do that and just nod my head.  I monitor your passing from my periphery to see if you see what I’m selling.  You never know.  If I’m feeling it, I ask you about your windows or congratulate you on your new 72 inch LCD TV from VIZIO.  I might make fun of you for walking out with one item or ask what time the party starts if you egress with nothing but booze……..

I smile a lot.  I’m good at this.  I’m a salesman and I know what I’m doing.  I’ve sold everything from pipes to dildos to credit card merchant services.  I’ve done hundreds of trade shows.  Name tags are a decade of ubiquity for me.

I can sell ice cubes to Eskimos but have never been about the hard sell.

I’m a monkey on a stick.  At least I’m pretty anonymous.  Having grown up in this town, I recognize a fair number of faces but enjoy the luxury of not being recognized.

I love to watch people.

I used to have a Costco membership.  I had a  beautiful house and a hot fiancee.  Three felines and a big back yard.  Nice new cars in the garage.

There is no longer any reason for me to be a Costco member.

I’m firmly of the belief that some members take the idea of membership a little too seriously.  My display is across from the food court.  The smart ones grab a cart and enter at the exit to grab a snack before shopping.  Never shop for anything on an empty stomach.  Some people come just to eat.  A buck fifty for a big ass hot dog or polish and a carbonated cocktail of sugar but no booze is pretty serious business.  The pizza isn’t bad.  I just remembered I’ve never seen them maintain that onion dispenser in any way; just turn the crank and perfectly diced onions spill onto your dog effortlessly.  I work four hour shifts.  I can’t believe I haven’t clocked anyone so much as inserting a single onion.

The average body type trends toward endomorphic and is predominantly middle aged to senior citizen.  Either young people don’t often frequent Costco or the demographic paradigm has shifted dramatically in Carson City since my upbringing.  I see a few of you, my classmates in there.  I believe I’ve seen Bob Priest three times and had the good fortune to meet his wife.

There are regulars.  Costco has regulars.  The number of faces familiar to me continues to increase un abated.  Many of them don’t buy anything.  My guess is they show up out of boredom and for the free samples.  On weekends it’s a virtual buffet, a moveable feast.

There’s the guy with the gray scoop of hair all bristlecone pine or creosote bush shaped like a brain complete with frontal lobes and cerebral cortex piled high on his head in the most ridiculous of pompadours.  I figured out just today that his significant other is one of the sweet older ladies who passes out samples.

The thin woman in her mid sixties that still has serious sex appeal.  Petite and glamorous, she always chats with me a little, sunglasses on her head holding back her beautiful gray mane, tight pants and stilettos.  She is sweet and has intelligent eyes.  I think I’d like to share drinks and conversation with her.  I picture her driving a late model red Mercedes convertible.  She rarely buys anything but flowers or chocolates, yet she shops for hours.

The warm and pungent waft of three different pizza varieties.  Combo, Pepperoni or Cheese.  Tomato sauce, bubbling cheese, bell pepper and sausage.  I typically try to close a few deals before I take a stroll to the southeast corner for the buffet.  Brie and garlic raviolis, shrimp scampi, marinated tri tip, yogurt, juice, aged Irish cheddar, chili or lentil soup.  It irritates me that the yogurt, chili and lentil soup are served with a spork.  My father and I have discussed this.  How do you get at the last of it?

I am a DSR.  A Demonstration Sales Representative.  At the end of every shift I fax my DARs, Design Appointment Requests, into the home office in Portland Oregon.  I have run a $10 million dollar a year company.  I was hands on instrumental in guiding that company from shipping $20k a week to $50k a day.  I produced and engineered a record that sold nearly four million copies.

Then there is the brutal repetition of dreams.  Realized and impossible.

I keep moving.  The universe pays no mind.

Drinks for my friends.

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