Foreword Online

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Cleaning the Pasture

Posted by Rob Heller on 1/31/18 5:30 AM
Topics: Rush, textbook rush, inventory management

What a winter!

Any cold weather blood I once had has long been diluted by chlorine and salt water. Temperatures shouldn’t drop into the teens in the Carolinas ever — they just shouldn’t. I’m over this cold weather. Bring on springtime! Bring on the outdoors!

Cleaning the PastureThis weekend the cold weather finally broke. Saturday had cloudy skies, but temps reached a more reasonable upper 60’s. That brought us outside and brought a call from Uncle Steven. He inquired if the boys might be interested in making a few dollars gathering firewood from his pasture.

Over the last few months of ice and snow storms, gusty winds have scattered fallen limbs across his property. Steven cut most, hating to see them rot and knowing the larger wood would eventually become tractor obstacles in the field.

With a little enticement, the boys jumped at the chance to help; Provide a 15-year-old an opportunity to drive an old pickup truck through a field and a 12-year-old with enough money to buy the latest tablet app, and you have willing labor. This was a win-win for everyone.

So, with a little Bocephus and Alabama on the radio, we set out in the rolling hills of Kershaw County, South Carolina. It wasn’t long before Uncle Steven handed out crinkled dollars from his worn wallet. His field was cleared, and Alice’s Dad was going to have enough firewood to last these remaining few weeks of winter — no matter how cold it got.

This winter clean-up brought to mind college stores. Old books are like fallen tree limbs, they can be in the way or put to good use.

Now that book rush is ending, it may be time for stores to look to their shelves. Perhaps there are books remaining that were purchased from students during buyback, or books that have sat on the shelves for multiple terms because return privileges have expired. These overstock texts are now in the way. The next selling period is in the distant future.

Call your MBS rep to give you a quote. We can probably even come by and spend some time on your place. It might be worth it to garner a few bucks on the store financials, while knowing they’ll be used, rather than rot on your shelves. If you ask, I might even bring a gallon of sweet tea. It’ll go well with the conversations we’ll share as I pack them up.

Let’s find a good use for those books you didn’t sell. Let’s clean the pasture together.

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About Rob Heller

Rob Heller began work with MBS in the Wholesale Division in 2012, but his bookstore experiences stretch several decades. He began his career in the early 1990s with College Bookstores of America at their off-campus location serving Clemson University. Rob is also an accomplished sports broadcaster having announced nearly 2,500 games including the ACC and NCAA Tournaments. He has served as the home stadium announcer for Clemson University, Coastal Carolina University, and several professional baseball and soccer teams. He and his wife currently reside in Elgin, South Carolina, (near Columbia) along with their three boys.

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