What do you do?
Ed Bousquet

Where do you work and what is your title?
       I am a tradesman at Barbeque Mercantile. The term “tradesman” is an old-style name (fits in with Mercantile) referring to a workman who has a skilled trade (tinsmith, carpenter, cooper, wheelwright). My skill is assembling and operating woodburning grills and smokers
What do you do there and/or what are you responsible for?
       During business hours, my main job is helping my wife, Kathy, run the store. I am primarily responsible for logistics – driving the truck for parts and merchandise; ordering grills, wood and wood products; and handling technical aspects of the grills that have microcontrollers.
How long have you been doing this kind of work (total)? How long on the Westside?
       I started grilling on a Ford company charcoal grill when I was 12 years old. I’d watch my dad and learned a lot from him. I’ve been barbequing ever since. Barbeque Mercantile will be five years old the week before Thanksgiving; I have been here full-time since June of 2007.
What do you like best about it (other than quitting time)?
       The most rewarding part of my job is helping customers improve their barbequing and grilling skills.
If you could change one thing (other than pay), what would it be?
       The long hours required for retail, which cannot be avoided.
What part of your work did your training/education never prepare you for?
       My engineering background never prepared me for being “on it” in front of the public at all times during store hours.
What makes working on the Westside special?
       The Westside provides a glimpse into the past when life was simpler with more consideration of the value of wares and relationships.

“What do you do?” is a regular feature in the Westside Pioneer. If you know someone who has an interesting job on the Westside (but doesn’t live here), he/she might be a candidate for this column! If you know someone who might qualify, give us a call at 471-6776.