“Mom, we’re going to set up a shop in the yard to sell your books!”
“Great,” I said. An activity and potential moneymaker all at once, perfect.
“How much do they cost?” asked Noodle.
“Well, if you buy them at the store they’re like $15.”
“We can’t sell them for that much!” she said incredulously. “Let’s sell them for like $2.”
“Sure,” I agreed. Given that we live on a dead end street, I didn’t expect much traffic. And two bucks is two bucks, man. Halfway to a pint of beer.
They set up a lovely display of Chance of Sun, Day Trips from Portland, and a few copies of Central Oregon Magazine. 15 minutes later, they’d encountered no buyers.
“Mom, we think we’re going to sell them for a dollar instead.”
I laughed. “Sure, whatever.” Depreciation happens.
After a good long while, two customers approached (our neighbors).
“Books for sale, books for sale, one dollar!” the chickens chanted.
“What is this book about, why should I buy it?” said one careful shopper.
“I don’t know,” Noodle shrugged.
“Well, you’re selling it, you should know what it’s about,” said my neighbor, grinning.
Noodle picked up a copy and read from the back.
“Fresh, alive, exciting and bold writing. A compelling piece of writing, heartbreaking and redemptive.”
My neighbor smiled. “We’ll buy that book for a dollar. How much are the magazines?”
“They’re $5.” This mysterious pricing difference was lost on me, but I was going with my original commitment to laissez-faire parenting.
“We won’t pay $5, but we’ll give you a dollar.”
After they left, Noodle exclaimed, “I can’t believe we got two whole dollars from one person!”
Join the club, baby.
To my surprise, by the end of the morning, they’d sold six books. I rewarded them with a few cookies and covertly pocketed the bills. After all, the chickens can’t drink beer.