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WHEN YOU PLAY, YOU GOT TO PAY

Story ID:1427
Written by:Frederick William Wickert (bio, link, contact, other stories)
Story type:Story
Location:Oneonta New York USA
Year:2006
Person:The man who played
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We traveled this New Year Eve weekend to a city an hour away. We went for a little shopping, a little dining experience, a little visiting friends, and a little entertaining of the two developmentally disabled guys that live with us in our care.

The city we visited is called Oneonta. It is an Indian name meaning City of the Hills. We have been going there for many years. It is the home of two colleges and of the national Soccer Hall of Fame. Our grandson lived in this city for a number of years.

We have come to know quite a few people over the years. Today we encountered a girl who used to work for a man we used to know. When we inquired about him, we were astonished at what we heard.

The man about whom we inquired used to own a sizeable chunk of the city of Oneonta. His was a rags to riches story. He started with nothing. He opened a small vegetable stand. Very rapidly, this grew into a very large and lucrative business.

This man made his business and his wealth grow to the point where he owned and operated a furniture and antique store. It was not the ordinary easy-to-find furniture, but very fine and difficult-to-find furniture. He owned a florist wholesale business and a very large complex of greenhouses where he grew thousands of flower and vegetable plants, but also propagated and grew large quantities of nursery plants, trees, and bushes. He built up a landscaping business and acquired mini-excavators and backhoes for the business. To keep them busy and to help pay for themselves when he was not using them, he began renting them out.

He began breeding and raising rare fowl and game birds and in his greenhouses he also raised large numbers of different species of parrots and canaries. He opened a retail bird shop and sold the supplies to go with them. His business kept growing and expanding and he became more and more wealthy.

The former employee of his told us that the bird shop is no more. The furniture store is gone and the building is now empty and is used sometimes by large groups for a big party or for holding a dance now and then. He no longer has anything to do with any of the businesses.

It seems that he decided to play around with some women other than his wife. His wife found out about it and had enough. One of his sons now runs the landscaping business and the other runs the wholesale flower and plant breeding business. His ex-wife has the controlling interest, the house, and just about all else.

He lives by himself in a small cabin somewhere up in the hills. He has two pigs and three goats. All else of his former wealth is gone. Since the departure of his wealth, it is unknown if the former girlfriends remain his girlfriends or not. He had it all until he began to play. Now he has to pay.

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Please visit my website at: www.fredsstoryroom.com.