So I got a call from my dad's friend who was running a couple of businesses--primarily one that sold security systems...door to door. Now I had worked at Nordstrom as a way to put myself through college over the summers and Christmas and I was almost always in the store's top 10 in sales. I was pretty good at it. I didn't really like it, but I could do it.
We'd known this family for years and he suggested that I move to Ohio to live with them and sell security systems. His top guy was making $100,000 a year. For that kind of money, I'd do almost anything as long as it wasn't unethical. So without giving it much more thought, I gave my two weeks notice, packed my bags and headed for Ohio. Little did I know, I was just trading one unpleasant winter for another.
My time in Ohio, is mostly irrelevant to the rest of my career. Suffice to say, I hated it. Even worse than being at the ad agency. It was a horrible job and no money in the world would make it worth it to me. I guess that's the one lesson I got out of it. I lasted less than three months and then finally quit. For the next six or seven months after that I ran my dad's friend's paintball field that was part of their backyard. It was fun, but was only busy on the weekend and didn't really make much money.
I was finally ready to make the jump and head for California. I told the family I was staying with that my time there was done and it was time for me to move on. I packed my car with everything that I owned and headed west with no place to stay and no job lined up.
Just before arriving in California, I called a friend from when I had lived in Huntington Beach. We had moved away when I was nine, but the years I did live there, we were best friends. I asked him if I could crash with him for a few days while I got a job and a place to live. He said sure. Day one, I got a PO Box so I'd have an address to put on a resume.
Day two, I got a cell phone so I'd have a local phone number to put on a resume.
Day three, I was back into Hollywood, trying to find a way to crack those impenetrable studio gates. This time, via the temp agencies. It worked!! Within a couple of weeks I landed a research job at NBC!!! I was elated. TV wasn't movies, but hey, at this point beggars couldn't be choosers.
But before I even started my job at NBC, I got another call that would change the course of my professional life.