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Monday, January 19, 2009

Memory Spark Monday: How did your Grandfather support his family?

Dh and I first met at a church activity for single adults—not much interaction, but we did notice one another. At a dance a few weeks later, we got a chance to talk one-on-one. I still remember something he said. I asked him what he did for a living, and he told me he sells insurance—not out of an office, mostly door to door. I wasn’t turned off by that information, I have a very successful insurance salesman uncle. But I burst out laughing with his next remark: “It’s not like I’m a Fuller-brush man.”
For as long as I can remember, my grandpa was a Fuller-Brush man. I know he tried other careers early on, but that was his real forte. He knew everyone in every small town for hundreds of miles around. And everyone knew him and his camper. Sometimes he had to take a customer’s order and bring it back, but mostly he stocked his camper and tried to deliver at the time of order. All eight of my aunts helped as they grew up. I remember Aunt Tami and Barb’s white 3-speed bikes they got so they could “go selling.” “Out selling” and “Gone delivering” were answers to the question, “Where’s grandpa?” As a job, it worked well with his little farm and his BIG garden.
He was good at it. Once when a policeman pulled him over, after some conversation about how much the ticket would be, he must’ve asked the policeman to give him a warning. The policeman refused, but when Grandpa saw his name, he said, “That’s OK, I know your wife, and I’ll go sell her enough to take care of this ticket—you’ll actually end up paying for it.” Legend is that the policeman tore up the ticket, so he only made a modest sale with the cop’s wife.

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