Get your Taxable Lemonade
It’s April vacation week and we’re home. I’m letting my kids explore their mild boredom to invoke their creativity. Sure there are plenty of places I can take them and plenty of things I can do with them but truthfully I am enjoying a taste of boredom too.
Today is a beautiful sunny day and with no clear plan and no neighborhood kids in sight. My oldest announced he was going to re-open his famous lemonade stand. “That’s great,” I said, not looking up from my crossword puzzle. After all, this was not my famous lemonade stand but his. I ignored him as he dragged the old puppet theater and a chair to the end of the driveway and set to work mixing the Country Time powder into a syrupy sweetness. We did haggle over the price though. Call me old-fashioned but a cup of kid poured lemonade handed over in a sticky cup should still have a cent sign not a dollar sign on its price tag. We agreed on 50 cents. Did he offer change back from a dollar bill? I can’t say.
My son may prove difficult in some areas but good work ethic is strong and he sat at his stand all day. His first customers were the neighbors across the street. The kids came running over with their wallets and doled out their quarters. Refills are free and the kids took advantage much to the chagrin of the mom who was about to put her kids in the car for a three hour road trip. His next customers were the neighbors to the other side whose mom bought a round for all. That was the big morning rush and after those loyal friends he had no activity for the bulk of the day.
During the afternoon rush hour, he employed an advertising and promotions person. It was hard to drive by without noticing his younger brother dressed head to toe in black and red with helmet and rollerblades yelling at you to stop for lemonade. It worked. Sales went up. Daddy even bought a cup! “Okay kid,” Dad says to the stand’s proprietor, “I’m his agent (points to younger brother) and he is going to require payment for his marketing services in the form of 50 cents and unlimited lemonade.” “What, that’s not fair!” says the owner. But he pays up. He knows he should.
Dad then says, “You know what mid April is? It’s TAX TIME!”. “No Dad I’m a Republican!” shouts the owner. “Too bad for you, small business owner, there’s a Democrat in office!” the tax collector replies. This banter goes back and forth with the younger brother chiming in from the side, “I’m a Democrat! I’m a Democrat!”
It’s supposed to be a nice day tomorrow. Perfect for lemonade. I wonder if the government in our driveway has stifled small business or if small business will just raise his prices. Guess I’ll find out tomorrow.