idioms...sayings understood by native speakers part nineteen
"Okay. Tell me about our first client." As Rick pulled onto highway 224 heading north for Lansing county.
"George Sanderson in charge of purchases for Simply Perfect."
"He likes fishing, has worked there for the last twenty years. Um, Simply Perfect prides itself in having anything the consumer wants. It is a department store, the biggest in Lansing county."
"So it caters to who?"
"The rich, middle class and working poor. Its motto is, If we can't find it for you, it can't be had."
"And our contract?"
"It is up for renewal. That is what this meeting is about. Mr. Sanderson seemed very reluctant to give me a meeting, so I tried to sweeten the deal by offering a discount."
"You didn't..." Rick shook his head.
"Hal, if you don't learn anything from today, learn this. He who states the price first loses in the end." He paused. "Do you pay full price for a car?"
"Okay. He likes to fish... lake, fly, deep sea? What kind of fishing?"
"What kind of fishing?"
"There are different kinds of fishing?"
Rick laughed. "Don't sweat it. I should be able to tell."
The drive over. A half hour ahead of schedule, Rick pulled out his sample case. "Hal, we won't need yours... But you take lead on this, until we get down to the contract." He paused, "Then I want to you to listen and learn."
Hal laughed. "You have been out of this for ten years, Rick. Things change."
As they entered the office of one George Sanderson, Rick took in a quick inventory. A picture of a man standing beside a swordfish held a place of honor behind the man's desk right beside his portrait of the family. Rick stood quietly as Hal made the introducitons.
"Matthews?" George Sanderson looked thru the man. "Since when has a Matthews been placed as a salesman?"
Rick smiled. "The company believes everyone should know how hard it is to make a living. Especially family."
"Um, Mr. Sanderson, about that contract."
"About that. I have been instructed to tell you that due to lack of sales, your products have been deemed outdated and will no longer be sold here at Perfect."
Hal's face turned white.
"So, Mr. Sanderson, that is out of the way. I hear you like to fish." Pointing to the wall.
The man smiled. "Sure do. Nothing like deep sea fishing. Caught this little baby off of the Keys."
Rick smiled. "I like bass fishing myself."
"Ah, a fellow angler."
"Yes. Nothing like relaxing and letting the bait do all the work."
"Yeah... that is until it is taken.."
Rick laughed. "And that is when the fun begins." He paused. "But, it does concern me that you are stuck with our toys that don't sell. Can you tell me more about that?"
Hal shook the man's hand and followed Rick out to the car.
"How did you pull that off?"
"I found out what was wrong and fixed it." Making sure the signed contract was put in his brief case.
"But what are we going to do with five hundred returned toys?"
"Oh, maybe they still have a little life left in them.. I plan on handing them over to research and development. But our historical belle series should sell well to his rich clients... and our Sassie Sally dolls should do well amongst the middle class and working poor...Sassy Sally can grow up to be anything, including an astronaut... " He started up the car and headed out.
Hal sat in the car dumbfounded.
Rick looked over at the guy.
"Maybe I am not really cut out to be a salesman."
"Naw. If you put yourself into it, and put yourself in the client's shoes, you can pull it off. Tell me about the next client."
The old man looked at Jenny's hand. "I think you are smarter than that. Take a seat."
Jenny crossed her arms. "I have to assume that you are the proverbial head of the Matthews family, then. Right?"
"I said sit down, girly."
Jenny shrugged. "Since I am co owner of this establishment, I don't have time to sit around and chit chat. What can i get you two gentleman?"
The old man cocked his eyebrow. Jenny was reminded of Carl and Mr. Fox.... must be a family trait.
"I am sorry. We are really busy. Taking a wine list off the table, she said, "Here. Maybe you would like to try some of our wine. We use local wineries. Our brews come from the finest local brew masters. Of course we serve.."
"Shut up. I came here to talk to you."
"That would require my time and time is money, gentlemen. If you don't want anything my pub has to offer, I would suggest you leave. You are taking up a valuable space reserved for my more valuable customers."
"Stay away from Carl." The man stated evenly.
Jenny laughed. "I have never gone near Carl." She paused, and considered. "In fact, now that I think of it. He keeps coming to me." She leaned both hands on the table, scrutinizing the man. "Maybe...just maybe, you should tell him to stay away from me."
"He threatened to resign."
Jenny blinked at that, and sat down suddenly. "Really?" smiling to herself.
"I don't see what there is to be happy about."
Jenny's face went blank, she muttered to herself, "He was going to give it all up for me?"...
"Don't be so pleased with yourself."
"Oh.. no... I'm not."
"I am willing to offer you money." he paused. "I told my grandson I would leave you alone, but my sons, they are a different story. If you take this money now, I will call them off."
"Really?" She curled her hand under her chin, while crossing her legs. "How much are we talking here?"
"A hundred thousand dollars."
"that much.... " She got up. "Joey, these two gentlemen will have two white wine spritzers." She paused, and looked down at the two. "Don't worry, it is on the house. I doubt if I can even make change for the likes of you" She turned away.
The old man bristled. "What about my offer?"
Jenny turned and pulled her cell out of her bra. She hit the speaker phone, and stated, "Hey, it is me, Jenny."
" Did you get all of that?"
Sal just shook his head. "Got it."
She turned off her phone just as Joey returned with the drinks.
"Joey, better serve some humble pie with that." She sighed. "Good day, Gentlemen." Forcing herself to take her time to return to the bar, she watched in the mirror as the two left.
Larry leaned over to her, "Sis? You okay?" Seeing how pale she had become...
"Larry, I want you to get lost. maybe go visit Aunt Edna for a month."
"Jenny, I am not going to leave you."
"These guys play dangerous games. I don't want you hurt."
"I an't leavin'."
Joey came up to the two. "Are you guys okay?"
"Joey, can you promise not to ever let this guy leave your site?"
He smiled, "That is an easy promise."
"Can you just come here and home? No unnecessary visits anywhere?" She looked straight into Larry's eyes. "I mean it."
"Joey, can you move in for a while?"
"I must be crazy..." Jenny muttered. "Larry, give me the hard stuff."
"You don't mean..."
"Yeah, Coffee, strong, black and fully leaded." As she placed her head on her hands. "And two Tylenol... I feel a migraine coming on."
The two vans pulled off the winding road that led to the Blind amd Deaf schools. They were sister schools that worked directly with the State University to pool resources and be able to help not only blind and deaf children, but those who had multiple sensory deficits. Only six miles apart on a large sprawling campus with dorms, the first van pulled up in front of the Blind school. Older children with red tipped canes were heading to various buildings. Signs warning "Blind children present." were plastered every ten feet. Cross walks and stop signs were everywhere. "Proceed slowly." "Five mph." As the van stopped, a contingency of five adults stood at the entrance. The group poured out of the van. Harry, Dave, Carlson, Stan and Joe gathered their brief cases and headed up to meet the group. Steve Hauser tagged along behind them, watching the children.
The next van proceeded with even greater caution as the signs stated, "Deaf children present." "Proceed with caution only on green lights." Older children were walking through the campus. Signing, making odd noises... and laughing and smiling. As the van approached the main building an entourage of adults stood waiting. Carl, Josh, Mark, Cameron, Jeremy and Conrad exited the van, along with Lynn.
"It is our pleasure to have you here. Your interest in our communtiy pleases us. If your time here can spark interest in our children's plight, we will be grateful." As the Principal of the Deaf school, spoke and signed at the same time, she laughed, "Forgive me, Gentlemen and Miss, I have done this for so long, I find that I am no longer able to talk without using my hands. Come with me to the conference room."
Meanwhile a similar speech was being given at the blind school. Joe stood in awe as an elegant woman with red hair and freckles introduced herself, and thanked them for coming. "I am the Principal here. We are looking forward to interacting with you and see if the meeting our minds can produce some results in helping our children be able to explore their world better through play. Follow me to the conference room."
Carl followed along on the tour of the compass, after meeting the teachers. They traveled through the school and buildings for preschool, early learning, middle and high school... The sun was starting to set as the group had finished the tour and were being taken to the dorms. He pulled out his phone and checked for messages. She hasn't sent anything, does that mean she is okay? And text-ed that sentiment to Jenny.
He clenched his jaw a little as he read the message. "So far so good. Btw, met your grandfather today. Do you know how much you are worth to the old man? 100,000,000 dollars. I get dizzy just thinking about it. BTW, you had better talk to me first if you are going to resign...I don't date guys who are unemployed."
Carl read the message, she sounds okay. Maybe I am just being a worry wart Frowning, he hit a button. I need to hear her voice. He felt a hand on his arm, Lynn looked at him with concern. "Carl, the pricipal asked you a question."
"Ah, sorry, business." As he returned his phone to his breast pocket. "What is the question?"
The Cell phone alarm buzzed. Carl rubbed his eyes and sat on the side of the bed. O300. He quickly hit the speed dial.
Jenny heard the ring and saw it was silly guy. She did not want to answer. But finally did, "What's up?" As she headed out to the car after the bar closed down, planning to take Sal home. Larry and Joey had already left on Larry's motorcycle to head for home.
to be continued