Posted on

Two Ball Point Pens From 16.5 Years Ago

The small things in life should mean a lot to you. Sixteen and a half years ago I was awarded two ball point pens by the George S. May Company. These pens were given to me by my boss at the time, Steven Sanchez, for excellent sales performance. Despite all of my good work, I cleared less than $400 every two weeks. I rode a bicycle (that I still have hanging in my garage). I had no medical insurance. I could not even afford to rent a room on this salary. I lived in a homeless shelter. In the end the taxpayers and charities of Santa Clara County, California were subsidizing this company so that it could pay exploitation wages to its workers. Walmart knows this story well. This is how they prosper.
On the other hand that miserable exploitation job gave me pride and hope in life. It also matches with that old saying: “Once you have a job you can always get another one.”
I carry these pens with me every day to remind me of how far that I had come in life. It gives me humility. 
After George S. May Company I was very lucky to get a job with an incredible man who owned a trading company in Holland. He gave me some profound words of wisdom as follows: “Jack I could lose it all tomorrow.” I never forget those words. Everyday I’m thankful for what I have and humble. Many people down at the bottom are never fortunate enough to pull themselves up. The millions of poor people,even in a rich country like the US, are living proof of this.


About tatamkuluafrica

I am a man who has lived n 6 of the 7 continents. I first arrived in Africa on April 18, 1981. Africa has been a part of my life since. I spent 8 months living in a Xhosa village in the Eastern Cape Province of South Africa. I was given he nickname Tatamkulu Africa. In Xhosa it means "Grandfather Africa." In April of 1994 I was allowed to vote in the first democratic election in South Africa..I was honored to be part of such a historical moment. It was a beautiful and a magical day.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s