Monday, December 13, 2010

Honey vs. Vinegar

J is in the early stages of trying to start his own business.  He's tired of working for The Man -- who is an asshole -- and of being paid shit to do it.  A couple of his buddies from work are feeling the same, so they're thinking about starting their own shop.  I think they could do really well, particularly given that J seems capable of drumming up business without even realizing it.

He was at Home Depot the other day getting wood for our new headboard and was having a hard time fitting the plywood into the back of the truck (it was too wide).  Suddenly he hears this guy with a heavy New York accent say, "hey, buddy!  Need a hand?"

Long story short, the guy is a home inspector and contractor and is looking for a new electrician to work on his jobs, or to refer to inspection clients that need work done to bring their house up to code.  "My guy that did electrical work for me, he was a drinker.  ("A DREEN-kuh").  A real heavy drinker!  Took off on me!"  And now he wants J to be that guy. 

Then there was a lady in the neighborhood gathering signatures for a petition opposing a liquor store that is trying to open up across the street.  She wrangled J as he was coming out of Ace Hardware with the parts to wire up an outlet for our new dryer.  They started chatting, she asked about what he had bought at Ace, he explained that he was wiring an outlet, she warned him to be careful and he said, "no worries, I'm an electrician, I know what I'm doing," or something to that effect.  Then he signed her petition.

Later that night, we had been out somewhere and picked up the mail as we walked in the house.  There was a letter from the petition lady.  She's renovating the top floor of her house (she also owns a hundred-year-old beater like ours) and is looking for an electrician.  Oh, and by the way, she's also an architect and can refer clients needing electrical work.

So he's now got a decent-sized job for this lady, for which he will be charging enough to allow us to have a significantly nicer Christmas than we otherwise would have.  All because he's a friendly guy.

I should take a lesson from this, I know.  Because when the lady approached me about her petition the day before she met J, I asked, "what's the nature of the opposition to the petition?"  She responded (a bit huffily, if you ask me), "the nature of the opposition is that I don't want a liquor store in my neighborhood."  Thinking how convenient it would be to be able to dash across the street if I needed some cooking wine or a bottle to entertain guests or something, I said, "honestly, I don't really have a problem with it.  But good luck with your petition." 

I guess if she ever comes by the house to drop off a check or something, I'll hide.


  1. He should definitely start his own thing. The people he works for have proven themselves to be douchebag assholes over and over.

    As for the honey/vinegar - it's true that you tell it like it is. I've never seen you sugar-coat a single thing. I wouldn't necessarily say vinegar, but I would definitely assign Jason the honey title.

  2. Hahaha! I don't know why, Lisa, but your comment made me laugh. What a very diplomatic assessment of my communication style!

  3. You can be the enforcer if there's ever a need for one.

    But when the architect woman comes by, yes, hide. Just in case!

    I hope this new venture turns out to be a wild success for Jason.