With apologies to the Beatles, the Federation of Egalitarian Communities, and the state of Vermont.

Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Chapter One Hundred and Six: Perfectly Legal

A week later the seed business sales were indeed flying.  Sal and Sally were now getting in ten to twelve orders a day.  Maybe the maple mustard greens muffins that were shipped out with every order were helping, but something was certainly working.

Doug was now calling himself Dazzle.  He looked quite different from the khaki clad lad who arrived at the commune a couple of weeks back.  He went around wearing bright bandanas, even more colorful t-shirts, torn jeans, and sandals, and had a scruffy beard.  He barely seemed at all like the person that Ken met at the door. 

Dazzle not only worked with the advertising but was also very helpful with getting the seeds packed up and shipped out.  The three workers were crowded in the little office and quite busy  when the three visitors came by.

“Peter!” Sal shrieked.  “And George and Fred!  I’m so glad you could stop by.”

“Always glad to help,” said Peter.  “So, is this the new business operation?”

“Sure is,” said Sal.  “Sal and Sally’s Selected Seeds.  I think you’ve met Sally.”

“Yes, indeed,” said Peter.  “We hung out a bit at the anniversary party.”

“We got soaked together,” said Fred.  “That rain storm was a bit of a bonding experience.”

“Great,” said Sal.  “And this is the newest member of our commune, Dazzle.  Dazzle, this is our legal team, Peter, and George, and Fred.”

Dazzle shook hands with all of the men.  “Good to meet you,” he said.

“So what have we got here?” Peter asked.  He spent the next hour quizzing them all about the seed business with George and Fred asking occasional questions.

“Okay,” said Peter after he asked everything he could think of asking, including questions he asked at least twice.  “Given your communes 501z status,  we’re going to have to be careful how we set up this company.  We’ll be back with some clearer ideas in a few days.”


A couple of days later,  Peter and Fred met with Sal and Sally to go over what they had found.  Dazzle excused himself from the meeting saying was busy “retooling” their marketing strategy.

“With the commune’s 501z status, we have to be clear that the business fits in with the mission of the commune and that all profits are shared among everyone at the commune,” Peter pointed out.

“It certainly fits in with our mission,” Sal said.   “We are trying to demonstrate and support agricultural alternatives, and you can’t do agriculture without seeds.  And believe me, we sharing everything at this commune.”

“Including toothbrushes and beds,” Sally added.  “And all too frequently germs as well.”

“Given that,” Fred said,  “I think we can just fold the new business into the commune’s regular legal structure.  Just be sure to document all this.”

“No problem,” Sally said.  “I’m going to sit down after this meeting and write it all up.”

“Okay, then,” Peter said.  “I think that this just about wraps it all up.  I will keep checking in with you and be sure and contact me if you have any questions or if anything comes up unexpectedly.”

He got up to leave but turned back to Sal.  “Oh, yeah.  One more thing.  That new guy, Dazzle.  For some reason he looks familiar to me.  Has he been here before?”

“Nope,” said Sal.  “He’s brand new.”

“He must just look like someone,”  Peter said.  “I don’t know.  Ever since I met him I’ve felt like I’ve seen him somewhere before.”

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