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Every Friday, I post a small insight into running Curio City and/or Blue Hills Editorial Services. My most recent posts are directly below. You can also start with the first post, or use the subject labels to the right to home in on particular topics. Feel free to comment on anything that interests you.
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Friday, June 26, 2015


Like last month, June's sales tracked LY favorably until this week. Large 6-LED cap and Bald Eagle kite sales made the last week of June 2014 one of that year's best. This week's below-average sales ranked it among 2015's worst. Paying my CPA for my long-delayed tax returns (more on that next week) was the coup de grace for both the month and the year. Now I'm just going through the motions.


Total income: -22.6%
Total COGS: -25.8%
Payroll: -12.1%
Marketing: +9.2%
Net Income (Profit) vs LY: -114.1% (-$438)
Actual Profit/Loss: -$822

Year to Date

Total income: -9.4%
Total COGS: -6.7%
Payroll: -4.8%
Marketing: -1.3%
Net Income (Profit) vs LY: -43.6% (-$522)
Actual Profit/Loss: -$1,718

Old, formerly reliable vendors keep dragging me down. Jackite's going into their second year without Create-a-Bird or Sea Gull kites, depriving me of at least $1,000 in sales; they say that they're waiting for Tyvek -- a material that must be more rare and precious than you'd think. My golf ball vendor's new website put them in direct competition for online retail sales. I'm sure they'll eventually realize that retail is an unprofitable pain in the ass, but in the meantime they've killed one of my old summer standbys. Switchables inexplicably discontinued all of their most popular designs last year and those styles that supposedly survived the cut are never in stock. I'll keep my speculation to myself and just note another $1,000 or so in lost business. Panther Vision caps still sputter to life every now and then, but I don't see them ever regaining their former glory.

At the halfway mark, 2015 needs a white knight. Two more potential bulk golf ball customers, one worth $1,200 and the other about $400, have been playing me. Landing both of those would put me even with last year. Both of them ignored yesterday's warning to order by today to beat my July 10 vacation deadline, indicating that they were probably bluffing.

My "find great new products" goal has gone nowhere because I can't muster any interest in shopping and I don't have any money anyway. It doesn't make any sense to waste time on that until August.


Last July I skipped my traditional 10-day Berkshires trip because money was tight and Iggy was failing. Money's still tight -- is it ever loose? -- but Iggy's safely dead, so we're taking our week off again next month. It does me good to get out of Braintree once a year, but it also makes hitting July's modest targets pretty unlikely.

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