Fabric Field Trip: Textile Discount Outlet
My teen has decided to take a year off between high school and college. One of the things he is determined to do is learn about business first hand by becoming more involved in my business, Camp Run-A-Pup, which, ironically, has run for the last 10 plus years without a business plan. If it works, we keep doing it, and if it doesn’t, we stop. Our mission statement is simply to delight our campers and their families as often as possible.
Fortunately, Cole has little desire to create long-range plans and spread sheets or to measure the cost efficiency of handing our pups treats whenever are request one; instead, he wants to focus on reorganizing and revamping our camp dorm rooms and marketing. His first project was to test his idea of building pup cots for our camp cabins (crates). This is the Ohio way* of sharing that we ventured out to visit an epic, mammoth sized fabric store to buy material for the cots. Intimidated doesn’t even begin to describe how I felt as I approached the front door. I was certain that the cantor-like greeter who sat at the front door would refuse to let me enter, without so much as a mazel tov. However, much to my dismay, he let me follow Cole into the store. (I have a history of fabric store fails)
The cutting table took up the whole first room. Bolts of fabric were swiftly measured, rolled, and ticketed. I think I heard one cutter scream at a customer, “Solids no plaids, next!” and another bellow out, “No stupid questions on Tuesdays.” Cole says it was my imagination. Whatever . . . I couldn’t imagine approaching the cutting table with a bolt of fabric and surviving.
I was sure that no one would ever hear from us again as we moved deeper into the store looking for durable fabric to use to make pup cots. I wished you all a fond fairwell around room six certain I would never be heard from again.
After wandering aimlessly for what seemed like months, the bric-a-brac parted, and a bolt of fabric hanging high up on a fabric rack flashed before us. It was exactly what we wanted, but, alas, we had no idea how to procure it. Fortunately, an experienced wanderer was willing to stop and share her knowledge with us. The commandments were straight forward: find a rolling ladder, position it under the fabric, climb up, unhook the fabric, slide the rod inside the fabric back onto the wall, and carry the 100-pound bolt of fabric back down the ladder. Go Cole! It was a hard and awkward job, but Cole gave it a heroic attempt. Unfortunately, he lost control of the unwieldy fabric half way through the process, and it blindsided both of us as it slid off the rod and tried to escape by rolling down the aisle. As we made chase, Cole shouted that it was all my fault, despite the fact that he was running the whole mission. You don’t think he’s becoming a Democratic, do you? I digress. Admittedly, part of the problem may have been that I was attempting to take a few videos and pictures while he was wrestling with the fabric (sometimes he fails to understand my responsibility to my Odd readers).
Once the fabric was captured and contained and we had caught our breath, we proceeded to the cutting tables to make our purchase. We were both surprised when we were pleasantly greeted by a nice guy who agreed to cut our fabric for us. Intrigued with the idea of using the fabric for dog cots, he shared about his dog and how he would love to send him to camp. He also took a cotton to Cole, who—while completely uninterested in his intentions—was conversational and friendly throughout the exchange and graciously accepted the compliment about his t-shirt. When the fabric was finally cut and rolled back onto the roll, we swiftly said goodbye and bolted to the front desk to pay the cantor greeter, who was also the cashier. I could have sworn he was humming “Sunrise, Sunset” as he checked us out.
Safe outside the store, Cole and I high-fived one another and headed to 26th street for a tamales at El Milagro. Thank you friend and Camp helper Vickie for the lunch suggestion.
Later in the day, my teen built his first pup cot and put it in camper Montie’s crate so he could give it a test run**
And then we tore out the basement bookcase and 700 celling panels. You understand, it’s kind of like when you buy a new brand of toilet paper, put it in the bathroom, and three hours later, you’re repainting the entire bathroom. That’s happened to you, right? If it has, you’ll understand; if it hasn’t, you can live vicariously. This post will be continued.
Odd Loves Company,
* As discussed in the past an unscientific study has shown that people from Ohio take a very long time to get to the point of a story. We love our Ohip friend.
** Disclaimer: All pups in crates look sad. That is why you see them in crates and behind fences on every rescue commercial. Monty is very happy with his new cot and quite content!
VirtualTour Discount Textile Outlet….kind of like being there…