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It's been a 'hard knock' week & it's only THURSDAY..what the?

Thursday, September 05, 2013

emoticon I'm ready for FALL! emoticon I'm appreciative of all the wonderful summer sunshine we get here in sunny south FL...but the blasted HEAT emoticon I'm tiring of! Living in south FL is like living in an oven with different variations of it throughout the four seasons.

There is BLAZIN' hot, really hot, mainly hot, and in winter finally semi hot with some blessed cool mixed in!

Add in the 100% humidity that accompanies those heat factors and you are mainly chafing like an egg in a custard dish! emoticon I must say though...it is GOOD for your complexion. I haven't had dry skin in all the many years that we have lived here.

BUT being an Iowa girl at heart...I MISS my seasons! Especially the glory of all of those leaf paintings the trees put on in the fall, and that first whiff of spring on a sunny day that promises you summer is on it's way. I think when you go through the seasons you REALLY, REALLY, love your summers! emoticon They are like your child coming home to visit from college (wish that were true for me) you know they will be with you for only a short time, so you soak up every minute of the experience with a savor that you'd otherwise take for granted.

That brings me to my 'hard knock' week. Well let's be real and say my recent 'hard knock' years!

They have been like the seasons...mostly ridiculously hard and disappointing...the 'save our house' fight that we have been waging for the last FIVE years if you can even believe that, and our most profound loss...our beautiful son, and just recently the loss of his beloved kitty cat Keanu.

But also as with the gravitational pull of the earth..those seasons have had some glimpses of that first whiff of spring peeping through. My participation in Sparkpeople, my wonderful friends I've met here, some new friends we have met from our consignment gallery, our long term circle of friends I'm discovering new appreciation for. By transforming ourselves and our attitudes we transform our reality and our reaction to it. We learn when to trust and when to run the other way screaming for the mountains. emoticon That visual makes me laugh! emoticon

Life IS a challenge..that's why I like to think of our time here on earth as lessons learned. Obviously some Wall Streeters haven't been on the rotation long enough because for most of them they have one thing in mind, and one thing only and that is greed.

But I like to think we can leave those lessons for them to another life's journey.

I've been through the greed cycle myself when we were riding high on the fame and fortune that a successful business can bring. I always used to think that mega money was a mark of mega success..but after losing our dear son Josh... I've found that money can't buy you true happiness...it only buys you distractions that make you THINK you are happy. It can't buy you true respect, only the illusion of respect, because after you lose all that cash you are pretty much the same people..probably a whole lot humbler...but the same people. All of the friends that used to fawn over you for the lavish parties, the trips, and the lifestyle look at you as if you are a NOW quite a different species...even though most of them have known you for 20 some years. It's a pretty sobering reality.

I found that out yesterday with what I call yet another 'hard knock' lesson from wealthy people and the way they operate in the world. I recently met an extremely wealthy couple (or so they say) that are closing down their house here in FL to go back to New Jersey.

The husband has been into our consignment gallery at least four times. A few visits are normal...but this GUY has something up his sleeve and it's a lot more than just his arm!

He has regaled me with how successful he is (a land developer) and his entire family, (his son an architect, and his daughter, a designer) are and he's brought in pictures of all of his SUPER valuable stuff...and what would we offer him for this and that? Some of the stuff is nice, but it's pretty dated.

I set him straight right from the get go...being an Iowa girl you are prone to the truth and nothing BUT the truth even after 35 years of FL la~la influences thrown in.

"We don't BUY anything unless it particularly strikes my fancy and usually NEVER in the summer time when our season is at it's slowest." AND the prices that we DO buy are wholesale and are usually insulting to people but as a last resort if they are desperate to get rid of things and have no way of picking them up after the consignment contract expires and I really LIKE the items...we sometimes do this. But sorry, not in this scenario because the gallery is SO full."

You really can't tell someone that their SUPER EXPENSIVE stuff isn't so impressive now can you? I try my best to be tactful even with my ' whole truth and NOTHING but the truth!" emoticon

Okay, the guy semi-listens to what I'm telling him... but as most generally happens with the 'big wig' type he completely discards the information that doesn't serve him and plows ahead with his own agenda.

"Well, I have LOTS of stuff, really really GREAT stuff, EXTREMELY expensive stuff and I can't take it all back so I'll have to consign it, or sell it." BUT...I have too much stuff to take pictures of so I need you to come to my house and appraise it for me.

I'm suspicious by now, this is the 4th visit to our consignment gallery and I know this guy is playing me like a fiddle. But he doesn't live too far away and some of the stuff is appealing so I make an appointment to go to his house.

I tell him I want him to do all of his negotiating and his 'wheeling and dealing' with anyone and EVERY one else long before I come, because once I come I expect him to agree to the consignment otherwise I have more important things to do. Yep...blunt needs to be blunt when you are dealing with a trickster.
He rattles off some of the other consignment shoppes policies and asks for a copy of our contract. I tell him I don't give out contracts carte' blanche until I'm sure the items are going to arrive in our store. The contract is completed when the contract is warranted.

Seriously, consignment stores are popping up like bad weeds here in our area, and I'm not going to make it any easier for them to lift my contract and start their own biz after I've paid out big bucks for all the legalize aspects in ours. It happens...but I try not to make it super easy for the competition. Who knows maybe this guy is going back to New Jersey to add consignment king to his SUPER successful history. emoticon Okay I'm entertaining myself...this makes me laugh too..he has ZERO people skills!

This guy is starting to look like a bad penny...but if I tell him I'm coming I will...and if he tells me he is ready to have me come...I have to believe he's good on his word.

I go there yesterday in the pouring rain. The house is a mess as is usual when homes are in the midst of moving...but I'm still getting bad vibes from this guy. His wife comes to the door and I once again tell her the terms of our contract. She pulls out a legal pad. This is a BAD sign!

I ask her why she feels it's necessary to write down pricing when she will be getting a copy of the contract...."oh I just want to know the prices you are quoting."

I should have turned on my heel and left right then and there. This is a classic case of using my expertise to price out items for these people that they most likely will turn around and cut me out of the deal and try to obtain that pricing on their own from Joe Blow off the street, or their neighbors who are usually quick to swoop in and grab a bargain when they see one.

Yep this ain't my first rodeo..these types. emoticon

I tell the wife that if I spend hours of MY time going through the house and inventorying items and pricing items and then I don't GET the items to represent I would rather not take up my time in the first place. AND I tell her that I made that perfectly clear to her husband when he came to our shoppe repeatedly for this courtesy. If you aren't ready to consign, then why am I here?

"Oh don't worry honey...we'll be FAIR to you!" Danger...danger...road ranger...this is the icing on the cake of betrayal in the business world. emoticon

But HEY I'm here by now...I'm a fairly trusting soul, even though I've been around the block a few times so I inventory. It's a LOT of stuff!

The guy roams around behind me and quibbles over the pricing. He's not happy with the 50/50 split that he of course knew was the consignment deal from the get go. I explain that we advertise, we lug the things around, fix up any flaws, dust, do our best sales presentation and most importantly display on one of the busiest streets in Bonita...hey...this stuff ain't cheap for us either my friend!

Another 'hard knock' lesson...I tell myself...Roberta (that's my serious talking to myself voice) you KNOW people will most always work any situation to their advantage if they can. Especially really wealthy people...this is just the way they play the game.

You DO know that you are being used and abused here, but you are willing to stay the course and you'll probably NEVER see any of this stuff..so here you are...what are you going to do, even though you've tried your best to have these people be straight with you...what ARE you going to do? emoticon emoticon

So I low-balled them on every item. If they want to play that silly little game with me...this little Iowa girl can work that chess board right back and give it double.

We'll see if I ever hear from them again. I doubt it, unless it's stuff they can't unload on their own. Time wasted in spite of my best efforts in dealing with that type of wealthy mindset.

Sometimes in this world when you are being played you just have to pass the same sauce that you are getting right back across the Thanksgiving table...right back to the serving goose and the gander. It doesn't make me happy...but it's a 'hard-knock' world. And I've gotten the game down pretty well by now. Did this guy really win by treating another human poorly...I think not in the long run. emoticon

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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    1749 days ago
    glad you low balled him!
    1753 days ago
    1753 days ago
    Someone is always looking for a deal at someone else's expense. Hope it all turns out, in your favor.
    1753 days ago
    It sounds like you should have listened to your suspicions and drop the guy like a hot potato instead of wasting all that time. We get the same thing at our retail store. People make appointments to bring in their last 2 seasons prom dresses when they are actually at least 10 years old.
    emoticon emoticon
    1753 days ago
    Have you ever considered charging a fee to inventory and appraise? You could always give them back a credit toward future consignments but at least you should get something up front for your time and trouble. I would be beyond irritated!

    1753 days ago
    Oh boy I do not envy you for having to deal with those people! Seems strange for a snowbird to spend the summer in FL and fly north for fall and winter. Hmmm. My brother lives in south FL and when I visit the northeasterners are always a topic for discussion. Lots of crooks in the warm states. You are one smart Iowa girl!

    Take care and hang in there! Tomorrow is Friday!
    1753 days ago
  • DS9KIE
    those crazy customers
    1753 days ago
  • JUSTME29
    Maybe you should offer your appraisal services for a price? Then if/when they consign with you that price can be taken out of your end (since you do the service for free now for those that you appraise for) and if they don't follow through at least you won't be out in the cold (or the heat, whichever).

    If I moved I would absolutely miss the seasons. I can't imagine not having them, so I definitely feel for you.
    1753 days ago
    1753 days ago
    Better days are coming. emoticon emoticon
    1753 days ago
    What a confusing, always on your toes job you have. I love the metaphors that you used. If it is meant to be, it will happen, if not, so be it. There are more worthy people out there who deserve your time and attention.
    1753 days ago
    BobbiAnne, I've never been wealthy, so really can't say, but don't you find if people have to tell you they are super successful and wealthy that they probably are not? At least, in my dealings with wealthy people if they have to tell me they are rich it is an immediate signal that something is not right with them and that they lack true class! The best people are those who do actually learn those life lessons offered up to them daily! I think I would've kindly said if you are so wealthy and successful, why don't you consider donating some of these items to a worthy charity? You obviously don't need to profit with so much wealth and success! I know me and it would've come out of my mouth before I could stop it! HeeHee!
    1753 days ago
    Divine retribution I say! Let them use your pricing and sell cheap! Good for you! It is appalling the way some people seem to feel everyone should take care of them - just because they happen to exist. Not because they do good deeds or are nice people or are deserving of assistance, but just because they want it and don't plan to pay anyone for the help. Low class, ignorant, self-centered people show up everywhere and I'm sorry you had to deal with these.

    Perhaps you should establish something like an hourly fee for inventory / pricing visits to people's homes. Put a clause in your contract that there is a fee of $50.00 or $75.00 per hour for pricing, which fee will be voided upon your acceptance of their property for consignment and the signing of the contract by all parties. That way you could be sure your time was compensated and it's based on YOUR ACCEPTANCE of their stuff - so if you get there and see it's all stuff you couldn't even give away, end of story. Life is too short to donate much time to morons like these folks. emoticon
    1753 days ago

    Comment edited on: 9/8/2013 5:00:23 PM
    So sorry you had such a bad week.
    1753 days ago
  • MIRAGE727
    Sorry, I've dealt with so many of these "individuals" (I'm just being merciful now!) that I simply won't waste my valuable time on them! I should take a lesson from you on this, Bobbie! They're p!@#$%g me off just reading about them!
    Now, I gotta go and take a ride to Honeymoon Island on my bike to chill!

    1753 days ago
    Mr. Toads wild ride! Seems to me this couple was a GREAT distraction for you, this hard week! Who knows, maybe that little voice in your head, "Roberta.... what are you doing here" is the one that will help you in the long run! I have that same voice & when I hear it NOW, I turn & go out the door! It was a VERY hard lesson (loosing my home to a ponsy scammer, etc.) BUT I just saw him for the first time since it all happened in 2007 & I felt SO great being able to look him in the eye & say.... I know who you are.... I know what you are trying to continue to convince me of.... but guess what? Your NOT in my life ever again, never, never, never! He STILL tried, but I am ME now, AND THAT was the lesson I had to learn! (My Mother is still doing business with him, he has moved in with her, her choise, my Brother's choise, Bro. has power of attorney, I can not do ANYTHING except LIVE & I mean REALLY LIVE my life! The blessing in disguise!)

    I'm off to ZUMBA & sweating because of motion, not humidity! Hope it cools down for you! LOve YOu!
    *~LIGHT emoticon emoticon
    1753 days ago
    Intersting blog on lessons on various things: the four seasons , hot seasons and the doozy ways that wealthy people come here : false impressions, warning red alert!!!!! emoticon

    On a dealing this person, please look at my stuff well.... Roberta says stay outta of this..!!!! do I really want do this??? emoticon

    Business people have be semi choosy ( accomadtes some customers??? Not everyone..Be like a zooo... ) Problems crop up " behind the Scences" -- getting replacement er...refurbished parts for the furniture, or employees don't show up, etc ) I used to work in the restrurant biz with my father years ago. emoticon

    ((((many hugs to u on tough week ))))))

    1753 days ago
    You GO, Bobbi!! Did he really think you were a new, fly-by-night, wet behind the ears business owner??? Maybe, but mostly, I think, he thought you'd finance his move back north!! What a dork!! I am sorry you wasted your time, b/c unbeknownst to him, your time is also valuable!! You should send him a bill for your time and effort doing all that inventory pricing!! (Unless it was already understood to be a free service, of course)
    Well, had you not done this yet, I was going to suggest you don't go alone. I feared for his real reason for wanting you to come to his home! (I'm paranoid like that and am not the trusting person that you are! Ugh!)
    Hope you are having a better day, today. I am wishing for you a deluge of $ holding, paying, buying customers!! And of course, all the best on the "save your house" battle.
    (((HUGS))) (((HUGS))) (((HUGS))) (((HUGS))) (((HUGS)))
    1753 days ago
    LOL, Girl! You've definitely got this down! I still get this type of a$$ online trying to sell me Indian jewelry. Even though I tell them upfront that I BUY inventory from Native artist ONLY, and put anything else on consignment, they still try to get me to buy their pieces. With my business, it doesn't do a Native family any good at all if I buy second-hand from a non-Native, and for me to do that, the piece has to be spectacular and rare, and something I either want for my own collection, or something I know I can turn around fast and use the money to buy from a Native artist. Many people, especially the wealthy ones used to getting their way just don't get this! emoticon

    When I had my shop, I had a doctor that wanted to "help" me - He would be a silent partner and give me money for inventory, and I would give him his purchases at cost.......Great idea.....Win-Win Situation.......Until one day he actually came into my store, locked the door so we could talk, and proceeded to talk to me like I was a 5 year old because I didn't give one of his wealthy friends a big enough discount! emoticon I politely listened.......Found a large box, and silently put EVERYTHING I had purchased with the money he gave me into a box, handed it to him, and told him to get the *#@$! out of my store! emoticon

    That worked for me!

    1753 days ago
    1753 days ago
    What jerks! Sorry you hadv to deal with that on top of everything else!!!

    1754 days ago
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