Tough week at the Outpost. Another ad rep gave notice, so we're back down to about 1.2 reps. Pretty tough to make a living that way. It's a tough, tough job.
And I just finished the least appealing of my many tasks: Sending out monthly statements and collection notices. I felt so down that I went over to Daily Pundit and took a shot at Bill Quick -- I know, I keep promising to stop, but it always cheers me to stir up his relentless and irrational bile. I'm sure there are worse bloggers out there, but I haven't found one who is more enraptured by his own self-importance. You can't go read my comments beause he has now seems to have deleted them -- although he left reponses up. Truly a class act.
Anyway, if I ever write my 13-volume treatise on "How to Screw Up a Business," I will certainly have a volume about the one thing that surprised me most about going into business: Discovering how many deadbeats there are out there. The number of people who think absolutely nothing of blowing off an overdue invoice never fails to amaze me.
Obviously, I don't want to paint with a broad brush. The huge majority of customers are dependable, and some, I am sure, would skip meals for a week to avoid leaving an unpaid bill on the table. But far more people than I ever expected will just flat walk away from a bill, never reply to a letter and never return a phone call. And the law protects them, so I have to be careful about naming names.
Ethically, I have a hard time distinguishing between those folks and somebody who walks into a store and steals something off the shelf. Of course, there are an awful lot of those people, too.