No. of Recommendations: 9
My dad was 23 in 1930 when he graduated from the U. of MI with one of those general degrees that said "I graduated from college." He had a full basketball scholarship, much to his Depression-stricken parents' delight, but Pop's free ride ended and he went to work.

Dad was a very smart man. I sure thought so in high school when he could help me with impossible geometry homework. He explained the virtues in having passbook savings and insisted that some money earned from mowing lawns and paper routes find its way there. "You don't know what it's like to be without money. The Depression taught me all I wanted to know about that."

Yes, he was extremely smart....but not in 1930. He went to Chicago and decided to sell magazines door to door. This lasted about 2 weeks. One lady told him, "Son, I think you're in the wrong business. Who's got the money or the time for reading magazines? People are just trying to survive. Now, good-by!"

Pop made one sale, he said, and he spent the night of the sale sleeping on a bench in Chicago's Grant Park. He woke up to a gun in his face and handed over his only customer's cash payment. So ended his ill-timed choice of "career."

Later, he served in WW II in France and Belgium. He was old for the army back then, being 34 when he went in a week after Pearl Harbor. "I gobbled up those C-rations. I didn't have to buy them. They weren't that good, but I remembered lots of days in Chicago when I would've given anything for 'em."
Print the post  


When Life Gives You Lemons
We all have had hardships and made poor decisions. The important thing is how we respond and grow. Read the story of a Fool who started from nothing, and looks to gain everything.
Contact Us
Contact Customer Service and other Fool departments here.
Work for Fools?
Winner of the Washingtonian great places to work, and Glassdoor #1 Company to Work For 2015! Have access to all of TMF's online and email products for FREE, and be paid for your contributions to TMF! Click the link and start your Fool career.