“Green Light to Support Veterans” or “Green Light a Vet”

Submitted to Community Café

First, by definition, someone on active duty is actually a Veteran – someone who has served in the Armed Services for one or more moments. The current percentage of U.S. citizens in uniformed military service is at the lowest point since about 1840.

Second, “military retirement” usually means “forced career change.” After I retired from the U.S. Navy I entered the labor market as an accountant. As an accountant, I specialized in inventory valuation and purchasing concepts. Trying to answer what to buy, how much to buy, when to buy it, and how much to sell it for is fun. Shortly after high school I worked for Montgomery Wards for about a year. Then I worked for J.C. Penny’s for about two weeks – inventory time. During college, I worked for Sears Roebuck on “receiving day” at a catalog order store doing heavy lifting as all the other employees were women – my Wife worked there and I was kind of “drafted.” In the days of old and bold, over 40% of the total floor space of the store was inventory storage not accessible by the customer. Today it is usually less than 5% and seldom over 10% of the total floor space. In the big box store look over head. Look behind your Walmart today and look behind it the day before Thanksgiving. Maybe one or two trailers today. Ten or more trailers daily over the Christmas sales period. These trailers will be the inventory holding area due to massive sales activities. Holding inventory costs money. Time has a financial value.

Someone somewhere several years ago started the “Green Light to Support Veterans” or “Green Light a Vet” concept. I suspect that it was a purchasing agent or inventory accountant that had a problem. They ordered 10,000 red lights, 10,000 blue lights, 10,000 yellow lights and, by mistake, ordered 10,000,000 green lights for the Christmas holidays. The red, blue, and yellow lights sold out during the holidays but they had a storage issue with the green lights. This is where imagination becomes a business asset.

You can make sales based on several aspects. First, you can have a sale and mark your inventory down to a point people who have no need for it will buy it. Or, you can create a need. This guy created a need. While the “Green Light to Support Veterans” or “Green Light a Vet” concept does put a degree of pride and emotional satisfaction in the Veteran and his / her family, it does not increase the pay scale, reduce overseas tours of duty, or shorten the waiting time at the medical facilities. As a retired Navy Lieutenant Commander, I support our Military and our Veterans. So, I have two green lights up as well as fly a U.S. Flag 24/7 properly illuminated during periods of darkness.

To get this light, 17 watts of LED power, to be adequately green, I got up to three sheets of plastic from 7-Up bottles and it was only “tinted” green. A visit to a craft store I found a sheet of green duct tape for about $2. That went on top of the 7-Up bottle plastic. Now it is “adequately green”

We abut a fairly heavily trafficked road and this is fully visible by the traffic leaving our little town headed to a local housing project. Plus, it fills in previously shadowed areas with soft green light. Coyotes and bobcats are common in the area. Our puppy is protected by a fence but that does not mean bobcats will not jump it. Our previous puppy, Elli, tangled with bobcats on at least three occasions. Kind of nice to know what is NOT in the shadows.

Thanks,

Rex