I have been planning this post for almost a year – actually, I have been planning it off and on ever since I started writing this blog more than five years ago. But because of a suggestion made by a customer at last weekend’s Orlando show, I am writing it two weeks early . . .
God willing, July 18 will be Walter White’s 100th birthday. These pictures of Walter and his children, Jim and Peggy, were taken five years ago at his 95th birthday party in the classroom at our store. I have written about him at least twice over the years – on his 95th birthday in 2009, and last year when I wrote about the dollar packs that he has made in our back room for several years. And I talk about him, directly or indirectly, a lot at shows when customers come to the register with a pile of those dollar packs.
Walter hasn’t made many of those dollar packs recently – age has taken its toll and he has been in an “assisted living facility” for nearly a year. More than once over the winter we thought his time was coming, but each time he rallied. But once he made it past the first of April, I told Gary that I was certain Walter would make it to 100 – Walter loves baseball as much as I do and there is no way he wouldn’t finish out the season once it started.
Next week he is moving into a new facility – partly because Walter and his family realize that he needs to be doing something to keep his mind sharp and the facility where he is now is not providing opportunities for him to do so.
And what does he want to do? Put together more of those dollar packs . . .
So Gary made arrangements with the new facility to leave several boxes of scraps like you see in the picture above, and when Walter is feeling up to it they will help him get him set up so he can work on them for a while. Sounds like a “win-win” situation for everyone (including you!).
Anyway, at the Orlando show last weekend I was telling Walter’s story and his approaching 100th birthday to a customer – and she said “Why don’t you put that on the blog a couple of weeks early so we can send him cards?” I felt like an idiot – it had never occurred to me. As I have said many times, most of our best ideas come from our customers.
Therefore – if you are so inclined, please take a moment and send a card to our store (or if you prefer, send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org). A lot of you will probably be able to create cards with scraps that have passed through his hands over the years.
We’ll make sure that Walter gets all of those cards and e-mails on his big day . . .
25 West Whipp Road
Centerville, OH 45459