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Adam Blake - 77. Chapter 77

We had three months to go. Angelo did bring two men to interview for the custodian job. As much as I wanted to hire Angelo’s relative for the job, the head of the janitors was more qualified. But I did hire Angelo’s relative as an in-house janitor. I told the new custodian, I wanted to train him to take over his job as he will become the custodian of the college.

James brought the pictures back, and I inserted them in Johnny’s parent's mail envelope. Finishing the mailing to parents, now I had to finish last week’s report to the trustees. I essentially brought them up to date on the gymnasium. I did include that the auction was a huge success and the money has been earmarked for two scholarships for deserving students. One has been identified as a budding artist and is working as Mr. Angelo Rosello’s protege. I added some more information about the increase in correspondence from the families of our students and arrangements have been made for the annual audit.

James picked up the mail, stamped them, and posted them. “Do you think parents will give you permission to take their sons to your cabin?”

I looked at him and smile, “Army”

Before supper, I spoke to Marcel about offering sandwich wraps in place of bread. “That might not be a bad idea, I could increase the whole grain percentage which will affect the protein level. Let me think about it.”

I thought maybe that might be a good sandwich for the Fair. Let’s see where this goes.

Wednesday, I check Arlene’s old office area, and everything was cleared and the walls were painted. “James, have we ordered the computer kiosks for the computer room?

“Yes, they are due here in two weeks."

“What happened to all of the secretaries of the staff that left?”

“A few have left, some are still in departments, like medical and sports, the others are in a pool managed by Jane.”

“Jane is managing a secretary pool?”


"I need to check her salary, if she is a manager she is entitled to a salary increase.”

I decided to walk around a little before supper. I stopped at the study, I thought this will be a nice room, no computers here, only books and paper. That reminded me I need to subscribe to magazines and newspapers. Newspapers were the easy one, the local, New York Times, Washington Post, and The Wall Street Journal. For magazines, The Economist, and I’ll add others.

James looked at the list, “You should ask the staff if there are any they would like to order for their classroom.”

“Good idea, send a note around and then let them get back to me.”

Supper was interesting. The boys enjoyed it, but I knew it as leftovers or refrigerator raids. Marcel was good, that food was tasty. Alfred was sitting next to me, “Do you like that?”

He nodded his head yes. “Do you know what that dish is called?” Again a head movement that said no “When I was growing up, my mother made that dish once a week. It’s called refrigerator raid.” He looked at me. “You know what a raid is?”

Billy said, “It’s when you go and take everything when no one is looking.”

“Yes, more or less, if you taste everything you’ll find a little of what we had Thursday, Friday, Saturday, and Sunday.”

I watched the boys as they tried to determine the taste. One boy said there is chicken, another identified a vegetable, it turned into a game. There were so intent on naming what was in the ‘raid’ that ate it all. I was taking my plate back to the drop-off spot, Lawrence leaned into me, “Pretty sneaky, you got them to eat everything.”

“Remember it when you have children, My dad use to give me a dime for each ingredient I could name.”

“James, how many students have a computer in their room?”

“They all do, at least one if not two.”

“How are they tied on the internet?”

“They were tied through our cable service and now they are on the satellite. Why do you ask?”

“One of the students said his parents gave this to him to pass on to me.”

“What is it?”

“It’s a permission slip for Anthony to spend the weekend at my cabin. I just mailed them out this morning in the letters.”

“Johnny must have told them. I think you have just found your communication link.”

“Yes, but let’s keep it a secret. I’ll continue mailing letters. We can use that secret when problems arise. Ok, number the permission slips. I have 4 bedrooms, so unless they share a bed, 3 is all I can take. If my family is there, it will be less. I’ll try to get them all over for a weekend before school ends.”

Tuesday, my office was a thoroughfare, staff in and out with a list of magazines, some I thought were a little too mature. Marcel with the week's menu and a requisition for a dishwasher, the last one quit. Invoices needed to be approved, purchase orders approved, it was a busy office.

“Doc, there is a problem no one wants to mention.”

“But you will.”

“The laundry service is late and has messed up the boy’s clothes.”

“Let’s find a place where we can do our laundry or we get better service.”

“There is a small pop laundry business where I live. He isn’t doing well and he’s a nice guy.”

“Contact him, have him come in and make a presentation.”

The next morning at breakfast, “Knights, we have a problem which I am addressing but I need your help. I have been receiving a lot of complaints concerning our laundry service. I plan on changing our service provider. I need your help to make sure your clothes come back to you, What I have in mind, is an iron on tag with you room number. I’ll furnish the tags, but you will need to iron the tags on all of your clothing. Sheets and pillow cases are generic and don’t need to be identified.”

“What does generic mean?”

“In the case of sheets, every sheet in the dorm is the same size and made of the same material. Once clean it doesn’t matter if you get Ed’s sheet because they are all the same. OK?”

“Sir, when are we going to iron on the numbers?”

“I’ll know more this afternoon. If you ask that question at supper, I hope I’ll be able to give you an answer.”

“James, were you able to contact your cleaner?”

“Yes, I asked him to be here at 2. Could you see if you can find a copy of the contract of the current service group and see if we have the latest account’s payable run showing what we have paid them?”

The phone rang, “Hello, oh hello Ambassador. How may I help you… yes, we have a little hiccup but that will be taken care of hopefully this afternoon… I’m looking for a new service, and we’ll be instituting inspections…I did consider that but currently I have no space… I have become overzealous and converted all of the found space to the boys' advantage…Yes the study room is complete…the gymnasium is large, I may find some apace in the locker room but that isn’t designed for a washing, drying operation…. Of course, I do have one option, buy out the current company and reorganize. I haven’t discarded that idea…. I know you’ll be kept informed. I appreciate your call and support. “

Wow, my boys are quick on the uptake. I wonder how many more phone calls I’ll get.

“James, who owns that laundry service that we use?”

“You won’t believe it.” He slid the contract across to me.

I called Dad. “Dad, when you were cleaning up the mess, did you check to determine if any of the Directors owned other property?..Yes, we’re having problems with our laundry service so we pulled their contract. Guess who owns it?..Director McMillan’s family, looks like a brother from the signature. ..can we go after it?… How about negligence? Wait James just pointed something out, the contract expired 10 years ago and has never been renewed.”

“Ok, thanks. James, do we have a lawyer?”

“I’ll ask Jane, but surely if anyone has a lawyer this place should. You still want to see my man.”

“Of course, is he here.”

“Dad, I’ll call you back. Hello, please sit down. James tells me you own a laundry business and may be interested in doing the laundry for the school.”

For the next 4 hours, we talked laundry. James went and got pieces of clothing, a sheet, and a pillowcase. As a result of the meeting, he’d need a laundry truck for pick up and delivery, he would need additional tables and washers and dryers.

We ended up paying for his expansion and owning 45 percent of the business. He would charge standard prices and at the end of the year, we would share in the profits, 45 - 55. James would represent the school’s interest. We talked about identifications of clothing, simple one laundry bag per student and staff. I dropped the Ambassador a line saying the problem has been solved.

“Adam, this is our lawyer.”

I called the lawyer, explained the problem, he said a letter of termination is all it would take.

“James, make sure no dirty laundry leaves the school.”

At supper, I told the boys the laundry problems have been solved. I explained about the bags for dirty laundry. I knew I’d get a call tomorrow morning. Supper was a leek soup, which was very good. The protein was provided by what looked like a hamburger but didn’t taste like a hamburger. Marcel told me it was tofu, which is a good protein source. I noticed the boys, weren’t really into it. I went and ask Marcel for some cheese slices, mustard and relish.

I set my plate in front of me, took off the top bun, added the mustard, relish and the piece of cheese. I cut the burger into four parts. I took one part and ate it, it wasn’t bad. The boys looked, I took a quarter and offered it to Lawrence, he took it and went to get the additional ingredients. Johnny came over and whispered in my ear. I nodded yes, he took a bite and headed to the counter for additional ingredients. “Let’s do this home style.”

I went and got the bottle of relish, I then passed in front of each boy adding relish to their hamburger. Then I went and got the cheese, during the same thing. I also got myself another burger. A couple of the older boys went back for seconds.


The next morning the usual crew met me for our run, they like to beat me. “Sir, how many times do we need to go around this track to equal running around the lake.”

“I don’t know, but if you check out the map of the lake, determine the circumference and then do the same thing with the track…” I didn’t finish, he knew he could calculate it.

Copyright © 2021 CLJobe; All Rights Reserved.
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Posted (edited)

40 minutes ago, drsawzall said:

Time to take a deep dive into the rest of the vendor contracts and any other areas where the school spends monies!!

I believe this is the last contract. He handled the food contractor, supplies are an annual buy and will be bidder. Somehow this slipped through

Edited by CLJobe
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Great progress, I wonder how many other contracts had some of the former employed had family fingers in the pies, the likes to get the boys to experiment with different foods and combinations thereof


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3 hours ago, mikedup said:

Great progress, I wonder how many other contracts had some of the former employed had family fingers in the pies, the likes to get the boys to experiment with different foods and combinations thereof


I think this is the last, the other contrasts were discovered by his father 

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On 6/18/2021 at 4:16 AM, CLJobe said:

I think this is the last, the other contrasts were discovered by his father 

It’s easy to see the big ones (i.e., food, supplies, etc). It’s the little puddly things that are easily overlooked, like the laundry.  These are the necessary services needed to survive daily, but they are not the first things people think of after food and shelter are taken care of.  It’s a good thing Adam has his team looking out for those details.

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28 minutes ago, Clancy59 said:

It’s easy to see the big ones (i.e., food, supplies, etc). It’s the little puddly things that are easily overlooked, like the laundry.  These are the necessary services needed to survive daily, but they are not the first things people think of after food and shelter are taken care of.  It’s a good thing Adam has his team looking out for those details.

Yes and his team the Knights and James in particularly will look out for Adam and the boys as well. Always best to have a confidant to carry messages to the boss

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My cousin called leftovers YMCA, yesterday’s muck cooked again😂🍔🍎

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