Thursday, May 27, 2010

Are we there yet?

6 games into a 9 game homestand, and I am just wiped out. I think all vendors are looking forward to Sunday Night. We all seem to need a break and some time away. 3 more games to go.

Reminds me of a time in the early 90's where we had a 15 game homestand. It was 15 games in 17 days. I cannot imagine doing that now. If I remember right, there was quite a party after the final game.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

The "Walk Around"

It rained tonight… then it poured tonight and the grounds crew pulled the tarp out and sent us waiting for 90 minutes.

Funny thing happens in a rain delay. About 35,000 people head to the concourse with the same idea. The conversation goes something like this:

Fan #1: “Hey buddy, what do you want to do now that there is a delay?”

Fan #2: “Oh I don’t know, but we don’t want to stay here and get soaked.”

Fan #1: “Well why don’t we head up to the concourse and walk around…”

Two dreaded words spoken by too many people… “Walk Around”

This starts a scene that is vaguely similar to how many college students will fit in this Volkswagen? In a matter of minutes there are 25,000 fans in an area made to hold about 5,000. Some going left and some going right. (Halftime at a football game is exactly the same way.)

This “walk around” is completely unproductive and creates something more like cattle being herded into a stockyard for slaughter. There are many wide open spaces at Target Field, but eventually people are channeled through several narrow hallways in certain areas. And it can get ugly.

A Beerman can see it firsthand. Some people get in line for food, some get in line for the bathroom, some keep moving, and there are even a few that decide they must stop their group right in the middle of this zoo to have a conversation. Each one of these lines and mobs creates more congestion, which leads to less “walking around” and more “being stuck in one spot”.

My advice… Instead of a “walk around” on the next rain delay, find a nice beer vendor to stand next to and chat with until you need your next beer. At least you won’t be stuck in the crowd without that Bud Light.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Wanted... Budweiser Knee Pads

I wore shorts today at the game. It really felt weird.

After 22 years of vending in long pants, the weather in Minneapolis dictated that I should try shorts for the very first time.

85 degrees and sunny. Why not…?

Now all I need is some Budweiser knee pads for advertising. If anyone sees a pair on E-bay, let me know.

Friday, May 7, 2010

Double Header => 2nd set of clothes.

Current conditions: 40 degrees and Rain/Snow.

No stairs for me tonight. The Twins will make up the game as part of a double-header tomorrow.

My report times on Saturday are 11 AM and 6 PM. That's not enough time to go home between and do laundry. I have 2 of everything except for knee pads. Fortunately the “knee pit” doesn’t smell as bad as the armpit when it comes to sweating.

For the fans, my personal recommendation for the second game of this double header is to buy beer from a vendor that actually changed clothes between games.

How will you know…?

Trust me, you will know.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

My beer looks good on TV.

Every beer vendor gets on TV once in a while. Whether it is appearing behind the play or having a foul ball bounce near you, it is impossible to avoid the limelight. (Besides, it's good for sales.)

Here is my most recent 3.4 seconds of fame.

(At least the beer looked good.)

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

What a Difference a Day Makes

Last night was horrible. I couldn’t sell a thing. I felt like everyone in the ballpark knew I had leprosy and might catch it if they bought a beer from me. (Before anyone asks… I don’t have any contagious diseases. Please don’t stop buying beer.)

Sure it was Monday and temps were in the 50’s… but why were the guys in the rows next to me selling beers and I was just getting exercise. It just seemed like wherever I went, beer was not needed.

I went home feeling horrible and wondered why I was the worst beer vendor at Target Field.

Seriously! I felt like a ball player after a 0 for 5 night with 3 strikeouts. What was wrong with me?

Fast forward to tonight… I was a selling machine. I was one of the top vendors in the building. Every customer was buying in sets of 4 and was waiting for me to come back. I kept the right mix of beer in my tray, so I almost always had the right beer for my customers.

What was different? Was it my attitude? Did I smile more? Maybe I smelled bad last night. What did I do differently tonight…?

The answer…

Absolutely NOTHING.

All the sales advice by Zig Ziglar, Dale Carnegie and Jeffery Gittomer means very little when it comes to being in the right place at the right time. I’d like to see one of those 3 guys carry 50 lbs. of beer and ice up and down the steps on an off night.

Beer vending is so much more than just having a positive mental attitude or “winning friends and influencing people”. There are just nights when a beer vendor isn't in the right place at the right time.

Fortunately there are other nights when I feel like Norm from “Cheers” and everyone shouts my name when I get to their section.

Hopefully there will be fewer nights like Monday and more nights like tonight.