If I never have to see another small coloured rubber band lying tauntingly on my lounge-room floor or endure another YouTube tutorial on “How to make the wickedest, coolest, awesomest ladder band in the world” presented by some precocious 10yr old it will be too soon!!
Lucky for me and all the other parents of the world we are going to be saved by my son, who claims to have the next big idea on how to make himself big bucks in the schoolyard, a new craze to misplace the cursed loom. He’s worked out that there isn’t any money in loom bands. Funny that considering he keeps giving them away on the premise that his friends will pay him, when they get the money……. He has decided to make his millions selling black wigs marketed as “the wigs that make you look like Cyril Rioli.”
Gotta hand it to him, he’s a lateral thinker. Not sure he hasn’t fallen off the lateral thinking ladder and into the crazy wagon but at least he’s inventive and who am I to pass judgement on his dreams.
I remember when I was a child my best friend and I were always on the lookout for earning some extra cash. We had grand ambitions of gorging ourselves on $5 worth of mixed lollies from the local deli or being able to afford to buy Smash Hits magazine, these days it’s Xbox™ machines and iPads!
I remember quite clearly that one of our get rich quick schemes went as follows:
- Proceed to pick all the lemons from best-friends backyard lemon tree and cut all flowers from next-door neighbours bushes
- Bag the lemons in old Tip Top bread-bags
- Put bagged lemons and cut flowers in toy wheelbarrow
- Wheel potential cash-cow laden wheelbarrow to local nursing home
- Sell all contents to elderly residents at advertised “bargain prices”
- Wheel empty barrow home
- Explain to parents why the lemon tree is bare
- Explain to parents why the neighbours have no flowers
- Explain to neighbours why they have no flowers
- Walk back to nursing home muttering disgruntledly under breath
- Return all money to easy targets, I mean….. elderly residents
- Walk back to friends house cursing and swearing loudly.
At the age of 9 we hadn’t even heard the word entrepreneur let alone know what it meant but now I look back I think that may have been our first real foray into the world of entrepreneurialism. We saw an opportunity, a gap in the market and we catered for that. I can only ponder on what might have been had my best friends Dad been named Richard Branson and not Mr Smith. I doubt we would have had to return our spoils from that day, in fact, one could even theorize that he would have been so proud and kicked in an extra $5 for TV Hits magazine as well!
And so I come back to my son. If selling Cyril Rioli wigs is how you want to start being entrepreneurial then go for it. It is really important to me that I foster the “can-do” attitude that seems to ooze from not only the successful entrepreneurs but those who are striving to live their authentic lives.
It’s ok mate, I will support you no matter what happens. I promise to be there to console you as you stare at boxes of unsold black wigs just as much as I promise to high five Mickey Mouse and Prince Charming on a Cyriol Rioli wig-funded Disney holiday.
And so I throw the question out to you. What hair-brained scheme did you have as a child or what out-there ideas have your kids come up with to be the next school-yard success story and as Dr Phil would say, “How’s that workin for ya?”