I Have Gonorrhea!

I’m a salesman. I work in the mortgage business. When I got into the industry a decade ago—before the waves of Jiffy Lube attendants and tae bo instructors joined the herd—it was just another way to make good money. And I did, right from the start. But now, handing someone a business card that says ‘mortgage’ anywhere on it is like being on a first date and slipping a note across the table that reads: “Hey, I have gonorrhea!”

It wasn’t always this way. There was a time when I’d avoid telling strangers what I did so that I wouldn’t have to help them sort through their personal financial nightmares. We, the people who do what I do, were at the cool kids’ table in the lunchroom. We were popular. We had the answers they needed. We had the money they wanted. And so it went, until someone got hold of the idea that we’d been picking their pockets the entire time. I suppose it’s fair in some ways, if you’re comfortable with the idea that everything good that happens to you is the result of you just being awesome, and everything bad that happens to you is the result of someone else’s treachery. No matter the reason, here we are, back at the nerds’ table with the Wizards of Warcraft kids.

As with any sales job, each day is a hustle. It’s invigorating. It’s disgusting. It’s frustrating. It’s absurd. And I have a strange feeling that it’s killing me. So I’ve decided to share my experiences with you. Maybe some of what I have to say will sound familiar. Maybe it’ll be new. Maybe it’ll brighten your day. Maybe you just won’t care. If nothing else, we’ll spend at least one brief moment together. And that’s good. Because, after all, nobody wants to die alone.

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