- Thoughts for inspired living

A “Cha-Ching” Thing - Grasshopper

The sound of an old time cash register ringing (Cha-ching) is often mimicked as a put-down for doing something solely for the sake of money.

Sadly, I can remember times in my life when I’ve done just that. For me, the financial rewards were severely outweighed by the burden of knowing my heart was not into the occupation.

These days, I feel sorry for telemarketers who call under false pretenses at the direction of their supervisors. These people know their only reward is money and the person they look at in the mirror every day is not who they want to portray. That takes a toll over time.

Reminds me of a story . . . almost a half century ago I was out of work and applied for a telemarketer’s job at a basement waterproofing company. The person doing the hiring said I was overqualified for that position but thought I would be better suited in their sales department, and added that I could make a lot more money. I accepted.

I was then provided with my tools: a tape measure, a 2 1/2 foot metal rod outfitted with a handle, a flashlight, and a notepad.

I went on one sales call as an understudy to one of their “seasoned” salesmen. We went to this elderly couple’s house and he asked them to take us to the spot in the basement where the water was leaking in.

My teacher pulled out his flashlight and asked me to shine it on the affected area, then pulled out his metal rod and tapped on each side of the crack. He tapped lightly on one side of the crack and heavily on the other and then asked the homeowners if they heard the difference. They said, “Yes.” He said that sound difference indicated a major problem and that their leakage problem would soon be worse. He then took out his tape measure and measured a sizable area of the basement and then pulled out a notepad and jotted down some numbers.

We then went to their kitchen table and he did some square footage arithmetic and came up with a price for the repair. The couple was taken aback about the huge cost. The salesman noticed their angst and asked if he could use their phone to call the home office and see if he could get them a reduction. We only heard one side of the conversation where he pleaded their case of being an elderly couple on a fixed income and how nice these folks were. He jotted some numbers in his notepad as he ended his conversation and came back to the table with some “good news.”

He was able to get them a sizable discount and stated the new amount, and added that he could only make them that offer now, and they would have to sign an agreement today to get the severely reduced price. He got the sale and I got a stomach ache.

The next day, I was sent out on my own to a young couple’s house. I did the same routine as the one I had seen the day before, along with the phone call back to the home office pretending to plead for a discount. Even with me offering a “giant” reduction, I wasn’t able to close the sale, but went home that night and closed my career as a basement waterproofing salesman.

My “Cha-ching” warning is this:  if you’re only doing it for the money, instead of going to the land of milk and honey, you’ll wind up feeling crummy with a constant knot in your tummy.

I guess my overriding message is this: If there is deceit in your chasing of loot, give that pursuit a boot, before it kicks you in the ass.

All the best,


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