Mike Rowe of Dirty Jobs fame has a knack for finding the nugget in a story or encounter and putting it in relatable terms. It’s no doubt the reason his television shows are so popular. In the short piece below, he summarizes his chance encounter with a young capitalist and ends up a firm believer in the power of a compelling marketplace.
The following was reprinted from Mike Rowe’s Facebook wall. Read the original here.
It was a negotiation from the start. Alexander wanted to sell me a cup of fresh-squeezed lemonade for $1. I wanted to pay 50 cents. So we haggled.
I argued the key ingredient – water – was free. Alexander reminded me there was a drought in California.
I pointed out that a glass of cool lemonade served on a chilly, overcast day like today, was less valuable than it might be on a day that was hot and sunny. Alexander pointed out the the importance of staying hydrated in all temperatures.
I said a glass of lemonade served just around the corner could be purchased for the same $1, but included unlimited refills.
He said that theirs was a “crappy national brand,” filled with extra sugar and “perfect for anyone who wanted rotten teeth,” whereas his was “fresh- squeezed from lemons grown in his mothers backyard, with a sufficient but modest amount of sugar added.”
He went on to discuss the cost of cups, marketing, signage, and of course, payroll. He then suggested my purchase would help support a small business, and that my patronage would forge a relationship with the owner and sole proprietor of a nascent but growing concern.
In the end, we settled on $2, which included the lemonade, a strawberry, and permission to post this photo.
Assuming he can get out from under his student loans, I think Alexander will do just fine…
Image: Mike Rowe and young capitalist Alexander, courtesy of Mike Rowe’s Facebook page.