How much does a Rasta peanut vendor make ?

Yesterday, the Lovely One needed the car at noon. On my way home from work over the bridge, was the Rasta peanut vendor selling his bags of wood-fire roasted peanuts. I grabbed a dollar bill out of my pocket, and bought a bag.

These Rasta peanut vendors ride a bicycle with big retro chopper handle bars that can carry a 40 pound bag of peanuts. They buy by bulk. The peanuts are so fresh, that they don't have a crunch to them yet. It is almost like eating a semi-dried soy bean. They roast the peanuts over coconut husks and other wood that they glean, and sell small bags of them for a dollar each.

I don't know how these Rasta guys stand the sun. Typically they are in long pants, usually cast off Dickie uniform pants worn ubiquitously by hotel staff here. They have black or dark tee shirts and usually another dark shirt on top of the tee shirt. They had their huge dreadlocks stuffed under a black woolen knitted hat, and they stand in the sun all day selling peanuts on the roads and carriageways of this tropical burg. They seem to be immune to heat.

I bought this bag of peanuts and went back to work. As I was pondering the imponderables of executed software code, I was casually munching on peanuts. I looked at the bottom of the bag, and discovered that the Rasta peanut vendor numbered all of his bags.

I had often wondered how much these guys make in a week. This number was a clue. I had bought #14 at noon. So by straight linear extrapolation, he would sell double that or roughly thirty bags a day. However at night, folks going home from work would be hungry, so lets bump that to 35 bags a day. The peanut vendor works 6 days a week, so he makes about $210 dollars a week. By contrast, our secretary earns $350 a week, which is higher than average. Secretaries make from $250-$300 per week.

So all in all, the Rasta peanut vendor doesn't do too bad. He is a self employed capitalist entrepreneur. The sun (and rain) are the only employment hazards. It must be self-sustaining, because I see peanut vendors all over town. I can just imagine them going to cocktail parties though. The opening line would be "I work for peanuts".

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