After purchasing a news stand around 17th and Rhode
Island Avenue,D.C.-my second news stand purchase (first
purchase was at 1828 L Street,N.W.) from the Parking
garage manager whose sister had operated the news
stand purchased, and passed away, I ran into unexpected
The seller of the news stand had mentioned that his sister
sold the identical mix of merchandise I sold at 1828 L Street
N.W.,so one day when the building owner’s representive
paid me a visit and informed me that I couldn’t sell soda
because the cafeteria sold soda, I was indeed surprised.
I consulted with my lawyers who had handled the purchase.
They checked the approved lease with stated I could operate\
a news stand of quality and permitted to sell “foods of a
snack type nature.”.One lawyer’s conclusion was that
although the dictionary defined a snack as a food commonly
sold between meals”, I should be able to sell soda, it was
not a good idea to not follow a landlord’s regulations.
The other lawyer felt that it was up to me and I really had the
right to sell soda pursuant to the lease.
Inasmuch as the landlord’s representative had stated I
could sell beer and wine,I made the decision to follow the
landlord’s instructions and eliminate soda from my “menu”
In order to secure a beer and wine license there was
considerable red tape including getting permission from
St. Matthew’s Church across the street and the B’nai Brith
Jewish organization that they had no objection.
Both parties voiced no objection, and after a while I
secured the necessary beer and wine licenses.
Sales were fair and after operating the business for a while, I
sold the news stand