Ok, so. I’m quitting my job (my last day will be March 9. It cannot get here soon enough), and opening a business. I’m not doing it by myself, because there’s just no way I could. Besides Pookie, without whom this literally would not have worked, I will have two partners.
In case you don’t know, I’m a pet groomer. I’ve been doing this since God was a pup and I’m really rather good at it. (Most memorable client? The 13 foot long albino Burmese python. Poor thing had mites and needed a bath. If you want to know what bathing a snake is like, grab a ferret or a four year old boy child (I have one you can borrow. Boy, not ferret), and attempt to wash them with any precision or thoroughness. Then imagine them 13 foot long, kind of ticked off by this point, and glaring at you with red eyes.)
Parenthetical paragraphs aside, this development is very exciting. I currently work for a company that wouldn’t collectively cross the street to piss on me if I was on fire. In case that wasn’t clear, I’m not feeling the love. Nobody is feeling the love. A few months ago, I went to work and my boss was just..gone. There one day, gone the next. He was fired, although the party line is that he was ‘moving on to bigger and better things. Which, come to think of it, would be a great closing line for a resignation.
So, we get a new boss on loan and he’s, well, he’s an asshat. He’s simultaeously clueless and cunning. On his first day, in the middle of telling me how we were going to overhaul the grooming department (gah), he says, ‘Hey, I notice everyone is really tense. Any idea why?”.
Well. Let me think. Maybe it’s because our boss is gone, in an unexplained and abrupt manner, and now you’re here. They’re all worried that they’re next on the chopping block, dumbass.
Fully eight employees have given their notice and most of those have already left. One day, when New Boss wasn’t there and we could relax a little (“What are you doing to grow the business?” “Remember, the customer is always right, even when they’re wrong! Fuckwit.), three of us got to talking and someone (I don’t remember who) said something like, “Fuck this. We should open our own place”. The other two of us agreed heartily and thus, a plan was born.
I immediately started looking at commercial rental properties and learned what frustration really meant. The money that people were asking for some of these places was crazy. One place, approximately 9oo sq. ft, was going for $1200 a month. I realize that doesn’t sound like much for that much commercial space, but this is a very small town on the outskirts of a lower-medium sized city. Our commercial real estate generally runs about a buck a foot. This place was already overpriced, but it also had ceiling tiles falling out, an awful green floor..covering (I honestly don’t know what it was) a smell that can only be described as stenchtastic and had tractors parked in it.
Now, I suppose I could have used the tractors as art/conversation pieces, but the rest of it just wouldn’t do. I asked if he was planning on doing any renovations (which was my polite way of asking if he really thought he was going to get $1200 for this shithole), and he replied that he wasn’t “putting any more money into it. Oh, and by the way, when they run the new road through here, the building will be coming down. Don’t know when, could be 5 weeks, could be 5 years. Don’t worry though, I’ll try to give you 60 days notice.” Pookie’s theory is that the nice man was, in fact, smoking the dope.
No wonder it’s never been rented out in the five years I’ve lived here.
So anyway, after much frustration and being stalked by realtors with their heads up their asses (2500 square feet for only $3750 a month! It’s a steal! Which is ironic because I’m the thief! Call me!), I found a place. It’s awesome and it’s perfect and it’s everything we need, on two acres, even.
We’ll be doing pet grooming, daycare and boarding. There is virtually no competition for the services we’ll be providing. Well, there are lots of groomers here (but we do have a fairly large and loyal following) but there is no pet daycare and any boarding is strictly ‘dog sits in a box all day and tries to avoid getting sprayed when someone cleans out his kennel’. It’s like jail, only not as warm and cozy.
We’ll be providing the space and the resources for dogs to have interaction (with both people and other dogs) and exercise. We’ll have pools for dogs to swim in, toys for dogs to chew on and sticks for dogs to chase.
It’s kind of exciting and scary and nervewracking and an absolute blast all at the same time. The thing is, the last time I did this (started a business), it was with Patsy and she was the veteran and did everything and I kind of gave her money and showed up to work when she told me to. This time around, I’m the vet and the one getting things done, for the most part. I keep wishing for Patsy, to be honest.
The two things I did last time that were of any signifigance were that I found the building and I thought of the name. Well, I found the building this time too, but instead of having to think of another name, I simply recycled the first one. Since the first business is still going strong, I figured that was a good omen. So, we’re calling it Creature Comforts. What do you think?