Traveling Tommy Boy
I drove 1,000 miles in the past 2 days. I headed out to Columbus, Ohio for work on a whim and decided to drive instead of fly. I would never argue that money is more valuable than time, but this case the 6 hours or so I would have saved (travel time to the airport, downtime and renting a car + 4 hours in the air would be roughly that) wasn’t worth the $500 in savings. As I write this and start doing the math, I totally should have flew.
Either way, driving west is weird. The feeling of home being home is not lost on me. I truly like Philly. I like the attitudes of the people. The pace. The feeling that if you can make it in Philly, you can probably make it anywhere sans New York or LA. Westward feels barren. To stay with the Tommy Boy theme, I felt like Paul when he says, “is there anything fun to do in this town besides eat?”
Westward towards central USA is different in a few ways.
- Health is an after thought and obese people are the norm.
- Being inefficient is expected. I had to wait 20 minutes at a Taco Bell in Washington, PA. There may have been 2 people in front of me and 4 people in the drive thru. The guy in front of me wasn’t even bothered.
- Spend $25 extra dollars for that hotel room. I cheaped out and paid $75 for a room at a La Quinta Inn 20 minutes away from Columbus instead of $140 for the rooms in the city. Fast forward and I was worried my car was going to get stolen, I could hear a door open and close every 10 minutes from 12am to 5am, and I thought there was a meth lab above me.
One question you should be asking me is what was I doing out there? The simple answer is, I’m a salesmen. I get in my car and try to sell our company’s product. It’s not easy. Our business has evolved to more internet sales to our customers so walking into distributors unannounced is a different challenge. This happened multiple times.
I’m not saying I’ve gotten great at this job, but I can tell within the first 10 seconds of talking to someone whether a sale is even possible. The simplistic part of sales is you can’t sell someone something they don’t need. Once I target that a company doesn’t specifically need what I’m selling, I’ll move on.
I’m not sure why I write posts like this. I think it’s to give some insight into what it’s like to run your own business. I woke up at 5:30am on Tuesday and didn’t get back to 1am on Wednesday while driving 14 hours East and West and another few all around Columbus visiting distributors and another side project. Was it worth it, as in, did I earn my time? Probably not. Thing is, you don’t know unless you do it and when you’re self employed, no one tells you to do it. That’s what I’ve been trying to get better at and that’s differentiating a 9-5 from life. These posts show how my mind is operating if that is of any interest to anyone.