He claims to this day, looking at his weather-beaten, dried out hands, he probably made the biggest mistake of his working career.
His best friend Julian at the time was working as a store manager and told him about the Walmart job opening, and my dad says he blew it.
My dad continued working as a carpenter throughout the seventies and found pretty steady work, but he was always on the move and travelling to wherever there was new construction, which luckily, was fairly plentiful during that era.
He always regretted not joining Julian whom he calls a true friend who was hoping to help him get his foot in the door. as it turned out, my dad did OK, but the stress of later working as a foreman for years took a toll on his health.
My dad was hard-working in every sense of the word in his heyday and I have nothing to complain about; he provided our family everything we needed to live a decent life. His friend Julian made it up the corporate ladder and retired in the early 90's making well over six figures, and he's now enjoying a heck of a retirement.
My dad on the other hand, didn't - and probably couldn't sock away enough money for retirement and he continues to struggle a little bit to this day, working as a school crossing guard at the ripe age of 72 just to augment his small retirement earnings, including social security.
He still curses to this day when he thinks about that summer day when he convinced himself he had done the right thing in not pursuing a Walmart career.
About a week after he filled out the Walmart application, he misplaced it and never bothered to look for it.
It re-surfaced in 2002, when he sold his home and moved into a condo near the ocean with my mom. He found it in the attic along with a bunch of other documents he had long forgotten about. By the way my parents are getting by just fine financially although they can't take those long vacations they've always dreamed about.
My dad has always been one to dwell on "what could have been" and the application that got away always drives him crazy, and he frequently brings up the subject when he gets a little toasted on rum and diet coke during weekend gatherings with the family.
Straight out of his mouth, this is what he always says to young adults; "Get yourself an education, do everything and anything you can to go to college, and go fill out a Walmart online job application when you graduate. Then you can visit my headstone, forget about placing flowers cause I'm allergic to them, and thank me."
I'm pretty sure he says this out of the sheer envy for Julian, who's probably in Venice, Italy right now sipping wine on a gondola with no financial stress at all!