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Peterman Rides Again: Adventures Continue with the Real "J. Peterman" Through Life & the Catalog Business Hardcover – Bargain Price, November 6, 2000
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From Publishers Weekly
The romantic product descriptions in J. Peterman's clothing catalogue not only launched one of the most eccentric careers in the retail world but led Peterman to sitcom notoriety as Elaine's boss on TV's Seinfeld. Offering "protection against the winds of Wyoming, the blizzards of Wall Street," Peterman's ad for a long cowboy duster earned him and his partners $580,000 in their first year in business. However, during the decade of his tenure at the J. Peterman Company (which is now owned by Paul Harris), Peterman's business decisions were not always sound: he expanded the catalogue business too rapidly, opened several lavish stores around the country and didn't hire experienced executives. In 1999, he sat through bankruptcy hearings and found himself out of a job. In addition to his business venture, this memoir chronicles Peterman's lifeAfrom his days as a minor league baseball player to his journeys around the world in search of exotic products. The anecdotes about his eponymous company are amusing (who would have thought 5,000 people would want to buy a $90 gold-plated monocle?), yet Peterman's memoir reads too much like one of his cataloguesAlike a grab bag wreathed in gauzeAjumping confusingly from his college days to the present, back to his childhood and then forward to his first years of heady success. Photos. (Nov.)
Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
About the Author
John Peterman, a former second baseman in the Pittsburgh Pirates organization, was chairman and CEO of The J. Peterman Company from 1987 to 1999. He is currently developing a "second generation" e-commerce business (johnpeterman.com) in Lexington, Kentucky, where he lives with his wife, Audrey. He still wears his famous duster. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Top customer reviews
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I was right.
In the book, Peterman gives us a fascinating and unvarnished play-by-play of how "one thing led to another."
You'll smile. You'll laugh. You'll shake your head in amazement and say, "That sounds like something that I would have done." My prediction is that you'll read it cover-to-cover in a single sitting. And when you finally lay it down, you'll feel encouraged and empowered and believe more deeply than ever that "anything is possible."
Buy yourself a copy of this book and meet an upbeat and funny new friend.
We haven't heard the last from John Peterman. Not by a long shot.
This book takes you on a hell of a ride on how he built the company into a $75 million dollars a year success that gained praises from management guru Tom Peters, the New York Times, and became a pop culture icon
Unfortunately Peterman lost it all, but as with most entrepreneurs, he keeps dreaming big and has hopes that he will do it again.
Peterman Rides Again: Adventures Continue with the Real "J. Peterman" through Life & the Catalog Business by John Peterman is a fun read to about the man with the duster and trademark hat.
The "Owner's Manual" that read like literature? Open it, and you found yourself sipping martinis on the veranda at Raffles (you know, don't you, that gin was invented so the British could choke down their quinine tablets). Or sharing a tent with the Tuareg under the endless stars. Or watching an entrancing -- and very well dressed -- young woman glide through the Gare de l'Est, the crowds parting effortlessly before her.
How many catalogs made you want to run a bath and settle in to read about luggage and clothes?
This book is like that. But different.
It has some of that same flair. Some of the same locales. Even some of the same copy, printed in excerpts (and a name to go with it, copywriter Don Staley, my new hero).
But it's not escapist. It's valuable, real-world information ... like what to do when you find yourself stranded up the Yangtze with nothing but a toothbrush and silver cuff links, the kind an archduke would have worn to a Vienna ball.
Okay, not that.
But it does take an honest look at the rise and fall of a company many people loved. A catalog countless people waited anxiously -- really! -- to receive. So many people wanted it to work. "Clearly, people want things that make their lives the way they wish they were."
In some ways, it was a classic case. Entrepreneur with vision, passion, soul, creates a company with soul too. The business catches fire. It gets huge. Too huge. Too much time crunching numbers. Soul gets crowded out.
"Classic cases" become classic because people keep making the same mistakes.
For years, the business looked like nothing could stop it.
Then the bottom fell out.
Peterman knows why. And he tells you why. Some of it was his fault, and he doesn't pull punches, even when they're directed at himself.
I like that in a man.
I like that in a book, too.
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