Yesterday nine boxes of music rolls -- a total of 114 rolls, plus a
dozen masters -- arrived here from Play-Rite Music Rolls (John & Jeanne
Malone) in Turlock, Calif. It took almost two weeks, which is longer
than usual, I suppose because of the Christmas mailing rush.
After I finished unpacking those rolls and jockeying them down into
the storage room, I was bushed. That made me wonder how on earth
Jeanne Malone at the age of 90, 21 years older than I and of pretty
frail build, accomplishes the work she does. I buy the rolls unboxed
and unlabeled, so that causes Mrs. Malone extra concern to pack them so
that they don't become damaged in transit from one coast to the other.
They arrived in perfect condition.
The Malones wanted to know when the shipment arrived and how it
traveled, so after taking a half-hour break to catch my breath and
lower my heart rate, I phoned Mrs. Malone to relieve her worry. I
expressed my amazement at her being able to do what she does. She
replied that packing orders for shipment is very hard on her hands,
making them ache. But she does all the work herself, because she can't
find help to do things properly.
Running the perforators takes skill and experience, I am sure -- and
that is probably the less strenuous part of the Play-Rite operation,
once you get the hang of the pace and accustomed to the noise -- but
there is a lot of dog work involved between the receipt of a master
roll and the delivery of 15 or so finished copies back to the customer.
And at Play-Rite it is pretty much a one-woman operation, although
John calls the shots.
My hat is off to Mrs. Malone, and I only hope I am as productive as
she is when I reach 90 years.