Is there a mook readin’ this blog who HASN’T seen “Glengarry Glen Ross” I wanna know? If so, please either — #1. Stop reading this entry IMMEDIATELY and go beg, borrow, steal, or just download it with a mission on your mind; or #2. Euthanize yourself IMMEDIATELY…
O.K. — I’m speaking now to those fair readers who HAVE seen “Glengarry Glen Ross” — I see you smiling now, ’cause you KNOW where (at least this next paragraph) is going — the movie-stealing 7 minute, 9 second speech given by Alec Baldwin to the sales team.
Now, if *I* was Alec Baldwin, I would be sitting home right now, cross-legged on my velvet throne, eating some cheap, disgusting but instantly-gratifying breakfast cereal (can you say “Count Chocula”?), getting high 6 times/day, and “holding court” for my never-ending stream of loyal subjects — with THAT scene on the Big Screen Tele running on an endless loop behind me — occasionally looking over my shoulder, pointed at said Big Screen, and saying — “I did that…” — followed by me grabbing a section of leg flesh/pajama pants up near my crotch with one hand, grabbing another section of leg flesh/pajama pants just above my kneecap with the OTHER hand, and saying — “This doesn’t look too BIG on ME, does it?!” Because as far as Dick Jones is concerned, THAT man don’t need to do ONE other THING in HIS life if he lives to be 152 years old — he did THAT, and that’s THAT!
Assuming we’re all on the same page here, we remember “the punchline” to that scene — where Mssr. Balled-Win brings a huge set of brass balls suspended by two cords out from behind his open briefcase, hanging in the anatomically correct place — Fuckin’-A RIGHT! The Sales Game IS a tough one; if you’ve never done it, you just don’t know, and if you HAVE, then pat yourself on the back right here & now, ’cause nobody else in the house will!
Yours truly Richard Jones has — started with selling seeds back when I was a kid (does anybody ELSE remember those ads in “Boys Life” and other mags?), through to working a “phone room” for a few months in college (where I learned the expression — “Fuck ‘im; who’s next?!” that you said out loud 952 times/day, after reading your canned spiel NINE HUNDRED AND FIFTY-FOUR times/day and being cursed at, hung up on, and generally brow-beaten by the peeps on the other end of the line, whose lives you’ve invaded), and finally on to my first “real job” after graduating college way back in 1978 — working for an office equipment company that sold dictating equipment (Yeah, I know — you gotta look THAT one up; don’t feel too bad) to all manner of offices/businesses/practices. Doctors and lawyers, bidnessmen (and women), and many others used to dictate into a recording device (stationary and/or portable) their thoughts, ideas, and even correspondence — then the secretary would “transcribe” that into a letter, a bullet-point reminder letter for the boss, etc.
So off they send us to “Sales School” for two weeks in Chicago. Sales School consisted of 2 hotshot, Alec Baldwin-type dudes who would tag-team the class of ~15 of us mooks (men and women) for 10 hours/day, giving us a collective mind-dump of all the things that do and don’t work in “the sales cycle”; followed by in-front-of-the-class role playing/sales scenarios for the last 2-3 hours of every day (followed by ~8 hours of drinking in various Chicago bars every night, and trying to stay out of prison, the hospital, and the morgue).
You wanna talk “Tough Love” — it don’t GET no tougher than THIS, kiddies! It’s like “Boot Camp For Salesmen”; 1-2 people “washed out” within the first 4-5 days — the rest of us poor dumb bastards got through it SOMEHOW, then were unleased into the Wild, where ~50% more washed out within 90 days. Anyway, one of the days’ sessions included a discussion about “trying to win over” the sales prospect when you were in his or her office by noticing something personal in the office — a spouse/family photograph, the big swordfish on the wall over the dude’s credenza, a moosehead (think the scene in “Arthur” w/Dudley Moore & his potential father-in-law) on the wall — you get the picture.
Anyway, the premise is to make a comment about the personal item that you’ve picked out, hoping the dude will “relax”, think you’re a “good guy”, and start talking on a personal level to you; in essence, you’re hoping that he “likes” you, so that when you sink your fangs into his neck and ask him to write a check for $2K+ for a bunch of shite that he really doesn’t need, ever’body won’t feel so bad about the carnage…
So there goes Dick Jones, released into The Wild with a brainful of sales techniques, a silver tongue, and 22 years of “Jersey Street” in his quiver — like a Stranger In A Strange Land — The Deep South.
What in the BLUE FUCK am *I* doing in The Deep South, you wanna know? A whole ‘nuther Oprah, for a whole ‘nuther blog entry. First day on the job; Boss say — “Go call on ‘the good list’…” — which is a list he handed each of us of bidnessmen that were either current or past buyers of OUR brand o’ shite — the assumption being that at the very least, we wouldn’t get the door slammed in our face, and have at least a 90 second opportunity to trip on our respective dicks BEFORE we got the old heave-‘ho back onto the skreet.
After 3-4 hours of knocking on doors at office buildings, depression sets in; Dick Jones is nothing if not impatient at 22 years old. I stop in a local watering hole for a sangawich and a beer (which I proceed to cry in alittle), muster up my Cowardly Lion Courage, and head back into it — Osterman Textiles — Rock Hill, South Carolina; Joel Osterman, HMFWIC (Head Mutha Fucka What In Charge).
I sweet-talk his secretary with the suggestion of a little “pickle-tickle” after work (yeah RIGHT!), and she ushers me in to Mssr. Osterman’s office, which is approximately the size of Gordon Gecko’s office in the movie “Wall Skreet”.
As I walk the ~100 yards from his office door to his desk, his head is down, nose buried in his “work” (I’m thinking he’s got the current copy of “Penthouse” behind that big sheaf of papers he’s acting like he’s studying on; I know *I* would!); I take the liberty of sitting down in one of the two chairs in front of the aircraft carrier that is his desk.
Not a word comes from behind the big sheaf o’ papers for about 2 minutes; then he puts the papers down, looks at me in a way that only a transplanted NYC “rag man” CAN look at someone, and says — “Yeah, what are YOU peddling today that I don’t WANT?!” (Nose goes back in papers, but not before I THINK I get a glimpse of Miss August).
“Well Mr. Osterman, my name is Dick Jones, and I’m with Sparrow Fart Bidness Products…” “Don’t need any; got summa your shite right here in the bottom drawer; never use IT, so I don’t want any MORE!”
Time to pull out for an “establishing shot”: It’s after my first morning of tripping on my dick for 4 hours, it’s after 3-4 beers at lunch, it’s me thinking I ain’t cut out for this game — I’ll be turning my notice in to-DAY and summarily heading BACK to that bar, so…what-the-fuck! I espy a large portrait of a woman on the right corner of his desk, pointing mostly at him, but somewhat visible to me — I lean over and snatch it up; the papers go back down on the desk — NOW I’ve got Mr. Osterman’s attention! ‘Cause he’s looking at me like — “Did this yuck just PICK UP the picture of my wife? Is this yuck HANDLING the picture of my wife? I’ve KILLED for less!”
Meanwhile, I act like I am studying the picture intently — I’m turning it up, down, and sideways in my hands, appearing to “study” the picture with a quizzical look on my face. 30 seconds go by — him watching me in slack-jawed amazement at my GALL; me puzzling over the studio-quality picture of his beloved.
Then I look him dead in the eye — “Is this a picture of your wife?” I ask. “Yeaaaah…” he replies. “Well it’s funny — I’ve got this SAME picture, except in MINE, she’s got the donkey dick in her mouth…” Time FREEZES.
The air is instantly sucked OUT of the office; there’s him, me, the picture, the wall clock behind him, Miss August — all in a vacuum. I’m looking HIM dead in the eyes now — waiting for his response. I’m watching the second hand on the Seth Thomas — 5, 10, 15, 20, 25, 30 seconds — nothing; not a fuckin’ PEEP.
Then — 45 seconds, I shit you not — after I uttered the “Donkey Dick Comment” — he says: “You got THE biggest set of balls of ANY man that has EVER walked into this office; whatever you’re sellin’, I’m buyin’ today!”…
$2,200.00 later, Mr. Osterman was the proud owner of a pair of “Time Commander” dictating machines — the second-highest priced set in the fine Sparrow Fart line of office equipment — and I head back to the bar, rewarding myself with the afternoon off for a job well done!
“You Gotta Have Brass Balls”, kids…