Cashing in my first million dollars – Shaw Local
There’s a friend of mine, Mark Fitzgerald in Mendota, who used the phrase “million dollar invention.” And he was describing this idea that you had – you know that thing, that sudden idea? — the idea of an invention that REALLY WORKS! It was cool! And, heck yeah!, had a truly LUCRATIVE appeal – money boxes!
He wouldn’t tell me his.
I wouldn’t tell him mine.
But we had a great time talking about what we would do with all that money! Dream houses, bizarre vacations, sports equipment, mountain trips, horses, sailboats, cars, wine, women and songs… A bit like winning the lottery, but in better, you get credit for DID something.
I had ideas in my head that could turn a profit.
As a child, I was excited. I had a great idea – a great idea – and one that would really help my mom. I love my mother. Great to help him. My dream machine has been sketched, pencil on paper, and from all angles. Pencil, not pencil. I wanted to invent a machine that could WASH THE DISHES BY ITSELF! What a good idea! What a good son! What a helpful boy! Be sure to give me a few pats on the head. But I showed it to him and found out pretty quickly that I couldn’t compete with Mr. Whirlpool.
I’ve had other brainstorms since. Like glow-in-the-dark paper, so you can write down your late-night thoughts. And my favorite – Electric Paint. Simply smear this product on your walls, sling a charge through it, and dial in the exact shade of Shocking Violet or Passion Pink you like. There are millions of shades of beige! Or just make white. Change it next week if you wish.
A great million dollar idea is the “box of the month”. It’s an annual subscription to receive monthly shipments of stuff. Just stuff. We have NO IDEA what we are shipping. You have NO IDEA what you are getting. You just get SOMETHING. You get STUFF. I think there are a lot of people out there who have everything they need – but you ALWAYS have to buy them a gift. THAT way they get gifts and they get stuff!
Another great idea is “Moms Who Party!” You get a bartender and a babysitter. You installed a portable bar in a mom’s garden. She invites her friends over for a few, or several or even many more nice cocktails. The bartender can give them a lot of fancy. Small umbrellas. Maraschino cherries. The works. The children are supervised by pros and have a “play date”, with a great time playing games and running around, while the mums sit and socialize with a nice cold drink. There is a lot to be said about this. It’s a win-win for the bank.
Finally, there’s one last idea that I’m always tempted to try – “Leo’s Lemonade”. You know those expensive, high-end, locally-made gourmet soft drinks? I first thought “Leo’s Lemonade” might take over the million-dollar lemonade niche – a tasty lemonade with a fancy label and a high price tag – but that’s long gone.
King of them all, however, is the Pet Rock. Will always be. My brother had one and it was good company for him. This kind of thing costs next to nothing. Sell a million and retire to a ranch in Colorado. Or Florida: Now we’re talking deep tan, huge sailboat, scuba diving, spearfishing, the beach – Boca, baby!
- Todd Volker lives in Ottawa with his wife and son, and they enjoy reading, kayaking, hiking, tennis and camping. He’s a lifelong learner with books in his hands.