The List

Busy people make lists.  Each in their own way.  Some people use their phones to keep up with their lists.  Others use paper and pencil.  I’m the type who makes a list with anything available.  Whenever I feel the need.  Paper napkins are a favorite.  Or church programs.  Maybe a shred of paper I found in my pocket, part of yesterday’s list.

These lists get updated with new things to be done.  Some things stay on the list for a long time, getting done very slowly.  Old lists are lost or discarded.  The real list is kept in my head.  I just write it down to keep it at the front of my mind, rather than in the back.  The things that get done slowly are the ones in the back of my mind.  Or the ones that are part of a not fully developed idea.  I keep a list.  It’s around here somewhere.

Now I have a very important list.  One I have to keep filled with details.  And updated on a regular and frequent basis.  It’s the inventory list for my store, Living History Antiques.

I’m good with Excel and I’ve made up my own little spreadsheet.  I have the item number, based on sequence of acquisition, and a description, the price paid, how much I’m asking for it, what it sold for, and when it sold.  Oh yes, and the last column.  That one tells me whether I’m going broke.  It’s labeled “Profits.”

It’s gonna take a few more sales until I hit a profit overall.  I’ve made money on everything I’ve sold, all one of them!  But I’ve spent a few bucks collecting all the stuff I have in the shop, so I need to sell a couple of things.

The list tells me where I am and what I have.  It gets longer every day.  I keep it on the computer.  But I also keep a paper copy in my pocket.  To write lists on.  And to have available should the mall people call with a question. 

“We have a buyer who’s offering such and such for that awesome thing you have.  Can you do that price?”  I need to know what I have in it.  Most of it I actually have in my head.  And for some things, going with what I have in my head, correctly remembered or not, would be ok.  But this is my business, and I need to be right.  Can you imagine selling a fifty dollar item for two bucks because I got confused?  Bad business.

So I keep the list with me all the time.  And panic if for some reason I don’t know where it is.  Yes, I can make another copy.  But what if they call right this second?  That’s unlikely, but it’s part of the business.  I know I’ve bought stuff that required a call to the owner.

Busy people, and successful people, keep lists.  And I do too.  That’s part of my story,  What’s yours?


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