REDNECK: Invested emotions
After a hard morning of clicking through TV channels, I was faint from lack of nourishment. I had given up eating broccoli for Lent so I decided on a tray of Schwan’s cream cheese stuffed jalapeño poppers with some baked mozzarella bites and bacon wrapped short ribs to complete the food pyramid. I opened my freezer and stared in wide-mouthed horror. It was empty. Worse, I was broke and the Schwan’s truck wasn’t slated to deliver for three days!
The Schwan’s delivery man provides a lifeline to those of us who eat normal food and he is considered a hero to Hog Islanders. According to Jonathan Schechter’s economics column in the Jackson Hole News and Guide, “Social, structural and economic factors in Hog Island create an elasticity coefficient 7 percent above the variable demand standard deviation probability distribution of the prepackaged food market.” He went on to estimate that half the population of Hog Island would perish if the Schwan’s truck missed two consecutive deliveries.
Then I remembered when JH Weekly editor Richard Abowitz stopped by my trailer last year. “Great news,” he exclaimed.
“The Weekly is going to pay writers in JH Weekly stock options!”
“Wow!” I was excited. I had heard of the wealth earned by early investors in Microsoft and Facebook. Now I would have an opportunity to amass wealth, score any woman I want, buy a new truck, maybe even a new double-wide!
“Each week we’ll give you an option to buy 100 shares of JH Weekly common stock at 10 dollars,” Abowitz said. “In one year’s time you will be able to buy 5,200 shares. Should the price reach, oh say, 25 dollars a share, you’ll make a profit of $78,000 less commissions!”
“$78,000!” Move over Foster Friess! Unfortunately, the week after the options started coming in, a bus tour of Utah girls had stopped in town and the quest of investment opportunity took a backseat to the pursuit of romantic opportunity. I had forgot all about the options.
I burned rubber into town and squealed to a halt in front of Wells Fargo Advisors’ office. Kelly Lockhart listened to my story with interest but refused to buy the options. He did offer a Budweiser for one, which he pinned on the wall behind him – a reminder to his customers to always seek professional investment advice. Jo Schmillen, of Edward Jones, wouldn’t even give me a beer, but she did offer me a bite-sized Snickers from her candy tray.
Finally, I called Blythe Winters-Paulson, vice-president of ethics at Goldman Sachs, and my most recent romantic conquest. She had Goldman Sachs buy my options, package them with bonds from a company developing housing in the Nevada desert while strong-arming Moody’s into giving them an AAA rating, and sold it as a package to a municipal retirement fund in California. I made $300,000! I ended up losing all the money in a poker game at Bill Fix’s law offices, but not before I stocked my freezer with frozen pizza, poppers, stuffed pork chops and even some crispy breaded cod nuggets just in case I bring home a Westbank girl. I’ll serve it to her raw and tell her it’s sushi.