Bloom is an ad salesman. He is trying to broker a business deal, in which the Telegraph will run an ad for his client, “Alexander Keyes, tea, wine and spirit merchant.” Bloom brings a clipping of an ad that Keyes ran in another paper whose office is around the corner. He further suggests a graphic design that will make the ad stand out more.
Bloom is authorized by Keyes to purchase a subscription to run the ad “for July.” The foreman counter-offers with three months. Bloom then excuses himself to check with Keyes; he thinks first of going by tram to visit him but thinks better of it (it’s a long trip) so he phones instead.
The narrative stays at the newspaper office while Bloom is phoning Keyes. He returns just as the newspapermen are going out to lunch and intercepts the managing editor, pleased to report that Keyes is willing to buy a two months ad run. However, Keyes has asked that they use the ad copy from a different ad that he ran recently in a Kilkenny paper.
The editor, displeased at being hassled by Bloom while on his way to lunch, treats Bloom very rudely. Undeterred, Bloom will go on to the National Library later in the day to pull the Kilkenny paper that has Keyes’ latest ad.
While visiting the Telegraph, he also tries to remind Hynes about a three shilling debt, but is either too subtle for Hynes, or deliberately ignored by him.
We see in “Aeolus” both how Bloom has become financially successful —- he hustles, and has enough creativity to recognize what makes advertisements work — but also how he’s treated as less than a full member of Dublin society.