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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Illustrate the meaning of "A Man is Known by the Company He Keeps" (without using the actual phrase). (01/31/08)

TITLE: A Wolf In Salesman's Clothing
By Joshua Janoski


“Time to put on the charm”, he said to himself while adjusting his burgundy necktie.

“You are one handsome devil” he arrogantly thought as he looked at himself in the screen door.

The glass reflected an image of a tall debonair gentleman standing in a black double-breasted suit. His black leather shoes were freshly polished. His jet-black hair was oiled and slicked back to match his attire. His facial hair had been nicely groomed with only a small patch of black stubble on his chin. A briefcase was clinched tightly in his right hand. This man stood ready to make a sale.

He pushed the doorbell and waited. Moments later, a middle aged gentleman answered the door.

“Good afternoon Mr. Heart!” the salesman exclaimed.

“Hey! Thanks for stopping by!” the man replied. “Come on in!”

The suave salesman slithered through the door and into the living area. He sat down on a plush couch and placed his briefcase on a coffee table. Mr. Heart sat down next to him.

“So I hear that you are interested in what I have to offer you today?” the salesman asked with a grin.

“Most definitely” said Mr. Heart.

“Excellent! That’s what I like to hear. First of all, let me formally introduce myself. My name is Stan. I represent Worldly Giveaways. I am excited to share with you all that I have to offer, but before I get to that, I am curious about something. How did you hear about us?”

“Well, my brother was recently paid a visit by a man who was offering him giveaways such as grace, forgiveness, and eternal life all with no cost to him. Apparently the price had already been paid somehow by someone else. It was a great deal. My brother tried to convince me to accept the offer alongside him. However, some friends of mine told me that I should look at all my options, so I made an appointment with you. They said that you have some killer giveaways.”

The salesmen cracked open his briefcase and pulled out a pie chart.

“Let me cut to the chase. I know of this competitor that you speak of. I know what he has to offer people, and trust me when I say that it is NOTHING compared to what I can offer you.”

He held up the pie chart in front of Mr. Heart and pointed to it:

“See this tiny blue sliver? Well that is what the OTHER guy can offer you! Eternal life, grace, forgiveness, it all sounds real good, but take a look at this larger red section.”

Mr. Heart focused his attention to the much larger red section of the pie chart.

“This red area represents what I will give you. Generous wealth, fame and popularity, beautiful women, the ability to do whatever you please, and so much more.”

Mr. Heart looked at Stan with a puzzled expression.

“But I have a wife already sir, and I am very happy with the home I have………

The salesman interjected:

“I understand that, but haven’t you dreamed of having more money? How about women? Don’t tell me that even as a married man that you wouldn’t like to have other women crawling all over you. What about consequences? Doesn’t that thing called morality get in your way and cause you to doubt your actions sometimes? I can take that feeling away! I am a man of indulgence Mr. Heart, and I want you to be able to indulge in all that this world has to offer you.”

Mr. Heart began to like what he was hearing.

“What’s the catch? What do I have to do in order to get all of this?”

“There’s no catch really. You simply sign an agreement saying you will join me in my exclusive Hades living community after you leave this world.”

“Where’s it located?” Mr. Heart inquired. I don’t like cold climates. I want to live somewhere warm.”

“Believe me when I say that it is a very warm locale.” The salesman snickered. “So how about it? Just sign on the dotted line, and I can begin delivering your benefits immediately.”

Mr. Heart hesitated, but he was tired of rules. He wanted to live life his own way. He pulled out a pen and signed his name with a flourish.

“Excellent! Thank you for your time Mr. Heart!” the salesman said. Remember that this agreement is…………binding.” He jumped up and rushed out the door.

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This article has been read 815 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Laury Hubrich 02/08/08
Oh boy, I love allegories and this one, Author, is a mighty fine! Great, great job! The only little tiny thing I wondered about was how the salesman could see himself in a screendoor:) Not a big deal but something you might want to fix if you use this someplace else, which you should, by the way! I love your "exclusive Hades living community" Did I mention I really liked this:)
Ron Hale02/08/08
I like the flow of this story. It grabbed and held my attention. A great piece of writing -- move on up!
Hanne Moon 02/09/08
Good writing - I love how he "slithered" into the doorway! I don't think all salesmen are of the devil, but I definitely think they slither! LOL This reminds me of the dramas my former church used to put on. Love the characters. I don't know how on topic this is, but it's still great! Keep writing!
Debbie Wistrom02/10/08
Grat job of making me feel that I've been slimed. Great character. Wish Mr. Heart had refused. Also not sure on the topic, but good stuff here, none the less. Keep writing.
nicole wian02/13/08
Brilliant! Definitely my favorite so far. Great writing and I can see the topic in there.
Lyn Churchyard02/14/08
Oh my, how did I miss this one first time reading through Level 1?
I just loved "The suave salesman slithered through the door" it set the whole scene. ~sigh~ I was hoping his brother would pay him a visit. Well done Josh, the Father's gift of words is evident.
Julie Arduini02/15/08
This is smart writing! I especially loved the description with the hair, etc...in the beginning. Great work!