“So, Darrell, how did you get into this business,” I inquired. I was writing a piece on small local businesses for our school newspaper and interviewing Darrell, a local electrician and the owner of an electrical company.
“Well, when all of my friends said, “Go to college,” I knew they were wrong. It wasn’t for me. Now, 10 years later, it’s 2018 and I’m glad I didn’t. While they are all scratching for pennies at the local café and diner I’m doing something I truly love with the electric company. Yeah, they may all have a liberal arts and science degree or something but I understood the trade businesses were where it was going to be at,” Darrell replied.
“That’s great, so would you say the expansion of the electric car business has impacted your sales in a positive way?” I inquired.
“Oh jeez, yes of course,” Darrell replied.
“Actually, I have a great story for you,” Darrell took a breath and then he smiled, “It was a nice summer day and I set out to a house call. I walked up the drive of this beautiful, new suburban house. I mean this place had a pool around back and must have been three stories! I rang the doorbell and this girl answered.
I smiled and said, “Hi ma’am I’m here from Darrell’s Electrical, I’m Darrell, I received a call to come by today and install your new state of the art electric car charger.” You see, I knew this girl but couldn’t remember her name or how I knew her.
She said her name was Cindy and that we had gone to high school together. So, of course, I was very embarrassed. The name didn’t help me at all and it most certainly didn’t help that she remembered me. Also, she was gorgeous! I just couldn’t believe I didn’t remember her. So, I said something like, “Cindy, yeah! I’m sorry, so where was that garage of yours?”
She showed me the garage and I set off to install the new charger. I had thought that whatever this girls husband did he must be really talented to afford a house like this. I’ve been in a lot of houses but this was by far one of the nicest and it didn’t hurt that they had a six-car garage filled with the nicest electric cars money can buy.
About two hours later I was wrapping up the installation when Cindy entered the garage and asked me how it was going.
I said, “Oh hey, it’s going good I’m almost all done here. Actually, is your husband going to be home soon? I usually like to get paid before I leave when I make house calls. Just so I don’t have to go through any sort of collection process. I hope that’s not rude.”
Then she asked me point blank if I remembered her and I thought, “oh crap! What should I do?” I decided honesty was the best policy, and said, “I should, I know, but I don’t. I may be the best electrician in town, but I’ve never been great with names. I am truly sorry Cindy.”
She laughed and turned and walked into the kitchen. She hollered at me to follow her and she’d write me a check since she didn’t have a husband.
I said something like, “Oh jeez I’m so sorry, the guy who called to set up the appointment, I just assumed…” Then she told me that was her assistant. I was so embarrassed I grabbed my check and split.
It bothered me the whole car ride home but finally, it hit me, this girl who spent all her time in the robotics lab and got into MIT was named Cindy but she had braces back then. Then I thought I remembered hearing something about her. So, I pulled out my phone and searched the name on the check, Cindy Thornton,” Darrell concluded.
I cut him off, “No way! Cindy Thornton?! The inventor of the electric car!“
“The one and only,” Darrell said.
“Wow. Cindy Thornton. Well thanks for the story, I can definitely use this,” I replied.
“Of course, it has been my pleasure,” Darrell replied.
“Oh, before I go, where did you say she lived again?” I asked. That would be quite the interview.
“Not a chance,” Darrell replied shaking his head.
“Darn, it was worth a shot!” I smiled.
“Last question, where can people find if they need some electrical work done?”
The Tradesman Electrician
31441 Santa Margarita Pkwy Suite A336
Rancho Santa Margarita, CA 92688