It is a cliche to suggest I had a flash of inspiration from this — and yet, it is true; I did. We had all the elements necessary for a successful business enterprise. There was a need for alcohol that was truly cheap, yet not smelling like it was recycled, and I had both the right skill set and a clean credit score. Best of all, I had unfettered access to an endless stream of young people desperate to find a steady job which could employ their inherent talents. True, they were mostly from the humanities and social sciences, which meant the talents being used at first would largely involve heavy lifting; but surely some of them could be trained up for more useful work. Besides, it wasn’t like anybody else would be hiring them for their majors, either.
My first impulse was to brew beer, since I had already tried my hand at the practice (a common enough, although typically brief, diversion for budding chemical engineers). It soon became clear that the market for that was virtually saturated. And, besides: brewing beer in bulk was complicated. Too complicated for my mostly-untested credit score.