Monday, March 4, 2013

The trouble selling our bed.

Life is never a straight line, there are lots of ups and downs and some funny episodes in-between. With that in mind, following is a true story that is about such a “moment” in my life, or a mild case of “bedlam" in this case might be a better description. This happened in the early 1980s. - Werner

The trouble with selling our bed.
Being a cabinetmaker (now retired) I decided to make a nice queen-size bed with beautiful rainforest silky oak timber. So we decided to sell the old double bed, which was smaller, but still in a very good condition, for one hundred dollars.

"Our classified advertisements bring results; take three and you get one free," was the catchcry of our local newspaper, the Cairns Post Since we were keen to get our old bed out of the way, I said to myself, "Let’s try it", and we took up that offer.  We certainly got results, but we hadn't envisaged that our sales drive would turn into a bit of a circus.

On the day the first advertisement appeared, we received the first phone call at seven in the morning, and another one soon after.   The first caller arrived first and paid for the bed, wanting to pick it up after work. So I rang the Cairns Post to cancel the extra ads.

The next ten callers were told that the bed had been sold.  But the 13th call (unlucky) was the buyer, profusely apologetic, saying that his wife wanted a queen size bed and he would be around to pick up his $100.00.  “Lucky,” I thought, "that we didn't spend it.” The ex-buyer handed me $20.00, "for my trouble" he said.  I thought, “If I get five more such transactions, I would not only have made the $100.00 sale price of the bed, but I still would have the bed."

The next day I rang the Cairns Post to re-insert the advertisement.  I had hardly hung up the phone, when a woman rang to see if I still had the bed, which was advertised the previous day.  She called in shortly afterward and decided that she wanted to buy the bed, and would have the money in three days time, and would then pick up the bed.  I was a little bit suspicious, and told her what had happened to me previously, but she assured me the she will take the bed and was prepared to swear on the bible, if necessary.  With such a seemingly ironclad assurance at hand, I rang the newspaper again (the second time within half an hour) to cancel the ad again.

Three days later, the lady phoned telling me that she was unable to organise a trailer, but would pick up the bed as soon she had one.  The fourth and the fifth day had passed without hearing anything from the lady, and I resigned myself that I might have had another "Clayton's sale," a sale when you haven't got a sale.

On the morning of the sixth day I set a deadline for the lady, “If she hasn't turned up by 10 am, I'll ring the newspaper again to re-insert the ad.”  The deadline passed and I walked to the phone, but got no further than dialling three digits, when my wife called out to stop.  "A car and a trailer had just stopped in front of the house," she informed me.

I had to pinch myself to see if I was dreaming, but the bed went out and the money came in. But most of all, I was sooooooo pleased that I was spared the embarrassment of ringing the Cairns Post once again, to re-insert the ad.  Even the thought, that I was only 5 digits away from an embarrassing phone call, makes me squirm.
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My thought for today. - Werner
Everything is funny as long as it is happening to somebody else.~ Will Rogers
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Kirsten said...

A very amusing story, I certainly got a chuckle from it. Thank-you, Werner, for sharing it with us.

Tony and family said...

We certain agree with your introduction that life has it ups and downs. We all have funny experiences like you, which makes life interesting, but unfortunately not everybody writes about it. All the family enjoyed reading your bemusing story, and got a chuckle from it. Thank you for sharing it.

LOL said...

Hello Werner, thanks for making the laugh of the day. Very funny story.
Have a great day.

Jenny and Andrew said...

Werner, we loved your story, it was an excellent narrative.

Barbette said...

Werner, I just finished reading your blog.... I then continued on through some other interesting articles from your 2012 blogs. I was thoroughly entertained! Keep up the good work!

Janice Skipp said...

LOL very funny Werner, not something you want to go through too often though