Laugh Tracks in the Dust 1-4-10
I am really disappointed. In fact, I’m crushed. I’m devastated. I may never recover. I thought I’d hit it rich and would be on easy street from now on. Here’s what happened.
The other day I went out to get the mail and found a real fancy, gold plated, embossed envelope. On the outside it read: “Important Central Bankers’ Lottery Information Inside! Signed: Ben Bernanke, Federal Reserve Chairman.”
I hurriedly ripped open the letter and there in bold print it read: “Congratulations, Mr. Yield, you are the winner of the 30 Million Dollar Central Bankers’ Lottery. Please give us a call to claim your $30 million lottery winnings and get further details.”
My hands were shaking so badly that I could hardly dial the number back at the Chase Manhattan Bank in New York, N.Y. But I finally got the call dialed and a brisk-speaking lady, talking in the finest Back East style, answered.
I stuttered and stammered that I wuz calling about winning the $30 million Central Bankers’ Lottery, and that I’d be able to pay off all my debts, quit worrying about my investments, take vacations all over the world, and buy ol’ Nevah enuf stuff that she’d get off my back all the time.
But the ol’ gal in New York quickly brought me back to Earth. “Mr. Yield,” she interrupted. “Yes, I confirm that you have won the $30 million Central Bankers’ Lottery. But you haven’t agreed to the payment terms yet. Would you like to hear them?”
“You bet,” I answered with my heart in my mouth. “What are the payment terms of my $30 million lottery winnings – a million bucks a year for 30 years?”
The New York lady answered, “No, sir, but you are close. You will be paid $30 per year for one million years.”
I ain’t stopped crying yet. I guess it just goes to show that us peons can never trust the central banking system and the Federal Reserve.
I’m happy to report that one of my best friends, ol’ M.T. Heade, from up by Leavenworth, Kan., has not only hung on to his family farm through decades of “ag crunch,” but he’s also prospered.
And while I’m really happy for him, I have to admit that I’m a bit surprised becuz when ol’ M.T. wuz in grade school and high school he couldn’t even learn to do simple arithmetic. He wuz a real dummy in school, to put it nicely.
But recently when I went up to visit him, I asked him about his secret to success in family farming and he answered: “Well, Milo, I guess I’d have to say that it’s been high quality production, innovative marketing and paying close attention to crunching the business numbers. I always make sure that I’ve got a small margin of profit on everything I sell.
Then I asked him what he marketed. He replied, “Well, Milo, I started selling homegrown, organic beef. I can raise it for $1 per pound and sell it for $3 dollars per pound to the fitness faddists. I also can raise organic eggs for $1 per dozen and sell them for $3 per dozen. And finally, I can raise organic milk for $1 per quart and sell it for $3 per quart.”
“That’s all well and good,” I replied, “but what do you figure your margin is?”
Ol’ M.T. scratched his head and answered, “Milo, I’ve been getting along just fine for all these years on that 2 percent margin of $1 cost of production and $3 selling price.”
That’s my kind of businessman.
I stopped by the other day to see my good friend ol’ A.C. Doocey at Asbury, Mo. When I drove up into his yard, ol’ A.C. wuz sitting out in the barn. “What ‘cha doin’ out here?” I asked as I drove up.
He looked up mournfully and answered, “Milo, my wife Lucy decided to clean up the house this morning and she said that she wuz gonna throw out everything that didn’t work. So she threw out the washer, dryer, toaster, the waffle iron, her curling iron, my electric shaver and then me.”
What could I say? I just sympathized with him.
I had an aggie salesman friend, ol’ Hawk M. Wares, stop by to see me recently. When we visited, he told me the economy wuz hurting his sales. “I’m finding out in this down economy, it’s way easier to give out samples than it is to deliver the goods,” he said.
Well, I’ve delivered this week’s column on time – without any samples. So, I guess I’ll take note of the New Year by sending along this meaningful quote from Founding Father, good ol’ Benjamin Franklin: “Be always at war with your vices, at peace with your neighbors, and let each New Year find you a better man.”
Have a happy, safe and prosperous New Year!
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