My First Job
SELLING KITTENS WAS MY FIRST JOB. Performing work and getting paid was my definition of a job. It would be the first of many jobs finding my niches in the supply chain of commerce. Hey, you got to start somewhere.
Our family had pets galore and in this menagerie of animals, which included birds and fish, were two female cats. The cats seemed to have one goal in life and that was to mate and produce new cats - winter, spring, summer and fall.
Yep, there was a lot of racket out my window in the months that proceeded the new litters. It always amazed me the colors and markings that Twinkle, a tiger cat, could produce at each new litter. She was the Grande dame of all our cats. She had several suitors in her life based on the range of colors and coats her little ones displayed. I also don’t think she was particularly picky, but that’s for another story.
It was my mother who encouraged this entrepreneurial activity out of necessity, as my dad’s solution for population control was a large rock and burlap bag tossed into the Rouge River. It was a total motivator for me even if it never would have taken place. I remember peddling six-week-old kittens placed gently in a large cardboard carton secured in my red Radio-Flyer. I made homemade signs front and back announcing, Kittens - 25 Cents.
I would travel up and down the sidewalk selling these little wonders. I found the little girls of the neighborhood my key prospects. Once they picked up and touched the merchandise they instantly bonded to these living dolls; I had a closing rate nearing 80%. If they were cute, the girls that is, I often dropped the charge knowing my mother would be in one of her matching moods if I had a successful morning turning the inventory.
Fond memories of growing up in Birmingham in the 1950s.