Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Manufacturer's Representative

I love all the comments on my blogs and it makes me eager to write some more. So many of them are encouraging and it means a lot to me. I have to thank all of you for being so generous in your comments.

Anonymous wrote 'strange that I should be home making a sofa while S. was working in a furniture store' or words to that effect. S. had become a Rep. and sold furniture to furniture stores. He was one of four reps working for a company that covered the Western States. He covered all the factories that had signed up with L. Associates. This meant he had to go to Furniture Week sales in San Francisco, Los Angeles, and Chicago. Later Chicago was eliminated and High Point North Carolina added. In the beginning they went by train but soon flying was substituted. The cost by air was higher but speed made up for for the lost days of selling. When S. became a partner in the firm, his travel costs were taken over by the L Associates. But the only benefits he had as far as getting furniture were: he could get it wholesale, or he could get discontinued floor samples off wholesale minus 5%. Our house looked like early Salvation Army and discontinued floor-samples for years. Pretty drab, until our fourth child was born and I began painting. I may not have been Leonardy but I was colorful.

I have to tell you a funny story about Furniture Week. We moved to the East Bay before our fourth child was born. Summers there were fierce, often well over 100'. One Sunday I had to join S. in the city. There were many factory owners and wives who were present and we local wives had to help entertain. My baby sitter was late arriving and I left forgetting to take into account the difference in the temperature in the city and in our area. It was 104 on our side of the mountains and it was 52 in SF. I was wearing a sleeveless dress and had no sweater or coat. What could I do. All the people were already in our hotel room when I arrived. I looked at the bedspread in our room and the color was impossible. I asked if I could check out our Southern California rep's room. There were beautiful pale Aqua covers on their twin beds. So now I could relax and charm our guests.

After several drinks it was time to get going to Johnny Kahn's Chinese restaurant. I dashed into the room next door and helped myself to one of the bedspreads. Folded properly it was a charming scarf and felt great when I got out into the foggy, chilly evening. The funniest moment came when I checked it at the door. The poor, young chinese woman took forever before she had it hanging with all the other garments.

Now that I have finished the story I feel as though I have already told you about the bedspread. Sorry. Hope it turned out to be the same a before.


Joanna said...

'Love the bed spread story and do believe it's the first time you've told it!

Pigdog and The Wordmonger said...

First time mentioning the bead spread! Priceless story. That piece of ingenuity so soon after the sofa construction episode. You are quite a fascinating person. Thanks for the blog posts!

Anne said...

I don't remember the story. But then, I forget lots of things these days. If you tell a story more than once I'll still enjoy it - especially if you remember it a bit differently the second or third time. Most of us are like that, you know. We repeat ourselves and often embellish our stories with a variey of memories.
When I am reading one of your posts I feel like we are two old friends, sitting together in a comfortable place, having tea, and you are telling me about something you remember. And it strengthen our bond of affection and caring.

Anonymous said...

I can almost feel that damp SF sunshine from here!

Mary said...

I don't leave comments often... mostly because I am usually so blown away by what you say, and how well you say it.
I just wanted to say, Thank you to S, and you, as part of our "Greatest Generation" on this veteran's day, from my husband (a Sgt in the US Army, retired) and I in Massachusetts.
I am continually amazing and inspired by your entries, and I can only beg, and plead, and hope you post more often! Thank you so much for sharing.

The bedspread was brilliant. You have the best on-the-fly solutions for things, I love it.

Della said...

Ahh! I love the bed spread story! Fabulously creative! I aspire such "vision!"

Ter-o-fla said...

:) Wasn't it Mark Twain who once said that the coldest winter he ever spent was one summer in San Francisco?

Anonymous said...

Great bedspread story. I am enjoying your blog. I totally understand the East Bay weather reference as I grew up in Orinda in the 60's. Is that anywhere near where you lived? If so, it must have been even more serene and beautiful than it was then.
Keep up the stories; they are really enjoyable. Best regards, Debra