When I started my real estate career in San Mateo in 1986 one of the first things we were taught was to pick a farm.  A farm is an area of homes you choose to send mailings to and to knock on doors to introduce yourself to the residents to talk about the real estate market, trying to get business.  Being on a limited budget to pay for postage, every weekend I would walk my farm, which was in the "Parkside area" of San Mateo.  I had about 1,000 homes in my area.  It turned out to be very successful!  I met a lot of very nice people and they enjoyed my monthly newsletter I handed out.  I even sponsored a neighborhood party, it was a blast!

 

My oldest son, Brian, came along with me; even though he was only 10 years old, he always seemed interested in real estate.  As you all know he now works with me and has been very successful at real estate.  We are very proud of how he took to the family business.  I think, by tagging along, I unconsciously taught him the essence of real estate and that is building relationships and having integrity. 

 

Well, one Saturday I awoke  and got dressed.  I put on my "gold jacket", white shirt, black tie and black pants, the Century 21 uniform back in the day.  As always, Brian came running in asking if he could tag along.  For some strange reason I said not today son, which later turned out to be a blessing.

 

That day started out like all the others.  I started my thing, knocking, talking and passing out my newsletters.  I walked up to this one house and rang the doorbell with no answer.

 

The homes in Parkside have garages that are on the side in the front of the house.  I then heard a side door from the garage open, I thought the owner must be in the garage, so I turned to greet the owner and to my surprise I was greeted by a 110 lb. dog in mid air going for my throat!  He never barked or gave any warning, he was just there.  My first reaction was to scream like a girl!

 

I was quick enough to knock the dog away and my newsletters flew up in the air and the fight was on.  The dog hit the side of the house hard from my blow, but all that did was make him even more mad.  Then he lunged again, this time about waist high.  I hit him again but this time he got a piece of my thigh!  I saw the garage door was open so I went in the garage and shut the door.  I was bleeding pretty good.  I figured I would open the big garage door and sneak out, but it was locked from the outside.  I was trapped!!  The dog was sitting by the door like he knew he had me.  As I was standing there I started pacing the garage thinking "how was I going to get out of this?" 

 

I saw a pipe lying on the floor.  I started getting psyched for the show down!  I grabbed the pipe, opened the door and it was on again.  Here he came, I swung and hit him, he let out a cry and hit the ground.  He jumped up and he was pissed!  I said to myself, "the garage does not look that bad after all", and I ran back in and shut the door.  I then went to the corner of the big garage door that the lock was not on and it lifted enough for me to break the door to crawl out.  

 

I looked like I had been through a war; my pants and jacket were ripped, I was bleeding from my leg and I was still freaking out.  I looked up and here is a neighbor from across the street who had seen the whole thing and was laughing!!  In years prior to that I would have walked over to this guy and "dropped him like a bad habit", but it took every bit of self control in my body to just get in my car.  I was shaking and was furious.  Then I thought of my son and how grateful I was that I did not bring him with me that day.  I thought "thank you god" you work in mysterious ways.

 

-Bill