Monday, November 07, 2005

Small Business Alert

Some of you are aware that my sibling, best known as a historian of modern Central Europe (at least, I assume that is what he is best known as, but a select few also know him as the founder of the Debauched Dingo Club and as a putative purveyor of Exploding Lawn Penguins), is in the process of launching a greeting card business. My friends Cesar and Alexis have actually gotten to participate in—well, not focus groups, but focus one-on-ones evaluating the product. (Yes, I know I told others of you that I would show you the cards, but I failed in my duty there. If you are in the Bay Area, I’m sure you could wheedle my parents into bringing forth their set. Well, maybe not, but you could try.)
Anyhow, it appears that the enterprise is well launched. He informs me:
“Last weekend, I went to the flea market on both Saturday and Sunday. The weather was good, if a bit cold. Both days I was stuck indoors, however, because of lack of space, and I did less well than I would have preferred, since relatively few customers venture inside. Good things happened, though, on both days. On Saturday, there was a convention of open-air marketeers going on in Washington, and the participants were bussed in to see our flea market (its being a venerable institution here, and all). One of them expressed interest in purchasing cards wholesale for sale at his Houston market. Needless to say, I reciprocated his interest. Then, on Sunday, my first customer bought $75 worth of cards all by herself!”

Stay tuned for further updates on this exciting entrepreneurial drama—or, of course, stop by the flea market and have a look. I’m guessing that it is the one sort of on the Washington-Bethesda border (on Wisconsin? on Connecticut? my DC geography fails me). But maybe that’s more of a farmer’s market. If you live in the DC area, I encourage you to make an educated guess which venerable flea market is involved. (I suppose it is fortunate that this enterprise is not based in Prague, as while there are many street vendors, this week’s Prague Post tells us that banks here are reluctant to lend to small businesses [“Small Loan Fears,” The Prague Post, November 2-8].)
I know there were plans to have a recipe card for Chewy Lowfat Fruit Bat Bars done by Halloween, so there may be something exciting in the offing for Thanksgiving, Hanukah, Kwanzaa, Christmas, and/or New Year’s. Go forth and buy! You too could be among that select set of $75-and-over purchasers!

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