Tales From Normal, Mn.--FICTION

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Tales from Normal, Mn. Headline News---FICTION

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Dateline Normal, Mn.: Normal Slashes Government Costs: Installs Fake DUI Units, Fake Government; --millions saved

Recently, I have been reading how in DeForest, Wisconsin, a group of policemen set up a fake DUI unit, and since using DUI units to organize stops is illegal in Wisconsin, and since the law did not prohibit FAKE DUI units, they felt it would be reasonably legal to try this method.

Presto---it appears that the acting worked---those FAKE DUI units did just great. (click on the post for the full story.)

I wondered. And----as I always do, I called my old friend, Herman, from Normal, Minnesota, that small fishing village just south of Garrison, Mn., and I just blurted it out:

"Herman, have you heard the news about the fake DUI units here in Deforest, Wisconsin?

"Shucks, Wolfman (thats what he always called me) we have been following this story very closely----we were so impressed, we moved to quickly fire all the local city staff, and have just hired fake city personnel---from a local temporary service----and presto, we have saved millions----and what is even better---the public does not seem to notice the difference----yup---we sure have some great actors in town?"

Wow!!!! what a concept. Who wudda thunk that fake could be so effective.

Do not worry. I stood right up and defended the dramatic talent in our fair city. After all---after recently viewing the Escanaba in da Moolight blockbuster at the JC Mckenna Auditorium, I knew that we have superb talent---and can do wonderful impersonations as needed sometimes when one goes undercover. I knew that they could do a wonderful job. Nobody does fake like we do.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Dateline Normal, Mn.: 'When Buffett bought millponds"-----FICTION

Recently while I was up in northern Minnesota at my favorite fishing village, Normal, Mn., the guys were gathered together for morning coffee at Betty Lou's---where the coffee was just very strong with lots of sugar and whipped cream, and where no mochas were served cause it was too weak and besides it was too complicated to make.

Right after the second round of coffee, one of the guys, appropriately dressed in a lumbermans flannel shirt, and sporting a Loon Lodge fishing cap, was reading the local shopper, the Normal Nugget, when he came across the following words of the revered local mayor:

"I have given a lot of thought to the lake restoration project in light of the current volatile economy. Last week, I listened to a television interview of financier Warren Buffett. He believes it is timely to make wise investments."

George read those words aloud to the whole cafe---the guys were just dumstruck. After all, Warren Buffett was the wisest man on the planet---as the head of Berkshire Hathaway, he had made wise investments over the past decades that had made him one of the richest men in the universe. So---quickly---the guys tried to understand the deeper meaning of Buffett's move to buy millponds. What did it mean for their portfolios.

There was a lot of shouting in Betty Lou's that morning. Some guys thought that Warren had just hit upon a strategy that was of the scope of President Lincoln's famous Illinois Waterway con....and a project that Abe had regretted till the day he died.

After a short review of the guys at Betty Lou's cafe---the vote was unanimous---Warren Buffett had lost his mind. It was time to bail out of any of Warren's other favorite projects as well. The guys all broke for the phones to make calls to their stockbrokers.

Then one lone voice of reason stood in the midst-----"Guys....Guys.....listen up...it was just a fantasy of the local mayor...it is not real....After all, they are doing Escanabe in da Moonlight this weekend....cut them some slack."

I am so grateful. Even though I was not wearing my lumberman shirt with a Loon Lodge fishing cap---still they took a moment and regained their senses. I guess that is why I am called to join them once in a while.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Dateline Normal, Mn.: " Highschooler quadruples debt equation----solves world crisis"-----FICTION

Last week, right in the midst of the greatest financial crisis to hit our modern times, I was stuck way up in northern Minnesota----and felt by the way pretty helpless to give any instruction, which in fact turned out for the best.

Right in the middle of the frenzied discussion on Saturday morning at Betty Lou's Coffee Shop in Normal, Mn....right in the middle of quite a bit of hand ringing of the guys as to whether their cd's would be good at the local bank, one young high school freshman, smack dab in the middle of his algebra homework at one of the side tables, raised his hand in the middle of the discussion.

"Why not just quadrupple it? he shouted. Make it Debt to the 4th. Rather than cube the debt------ quadrupple it?

The crowd at Betty Lou's was just stunned. How come they had not thought of it. Just add another layer, just like they would clothes in the winter time. Kind of a layered look---not lawyered look---the layered look.

The guys were pretty wild and crazy about the idea. They all rushed to the phones to call their congressman.

Just then, the tv in the coffee shop in the upper corner flashed the latest news---it seems that their idea had travelled mysteriously all across the world and currently was being implemented in Spain...and then the total European Community. The guys were just speechless.

"This must be a miracle", Herman shouted.

Everybody went wild. And ordered another round of strong coffee, with extra sugar and whipped cream.

See. Just a little of good old common sense...from the downhome northern tundra...could go a long way to solve the handwringing of a few million worldwide. Ya just never know when a little algebra might help.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Dateline Normal: "Jersey Joe Visits Normal----explains derivitaves"----FICTION

Well what a week that was last week. With all the fluctuations in the stock market and such, I thought it was a great time to get grounded-----like in fishing. So, right as the market opened on Friday, I was on the road, and during the worst trading moments, was right in down home country AM music territory and missed the whole thing. It was just great.

I had gotten a call from Herman, my old country boy lawyer friend from Normal, and he explained that 'Jersey Joe" was going to be in town---and that if I wanted a clear explanation to what the big tiff was on Wall Street, that "Jersey Joe" was sure to have it.

We just called him "Jersey" Joe ---he was not from Jersey. It was Joe's habit of always wearing a down home football jersey even in formal situations that had given him such a reputation up in the north country----and he had become quite a legend in the accounting profession in the securities business. We just all wondered what he would have to say about the current stock panic. What would be his take?

Just as soon as I got into Normal, I headed over to the Hideaway Lounge----Herman, my countryboylawyer friend had the manhattens ready----the guys were all lined up at the bench to hear the latest.

I decided to go first:

"Well, Jersey Joe, how does this all compute? Seems like the damage is just devastating---what is your take on it?

Jersey Joe looked suprised and a little angered:

"Shucks---there is no reason for the hubub at all. After all it is just natural accounting---and balanced too. Ya just debit world wealth .....and then credit traders short accounts....it is real neat. No reason for alarm at all. The loss is non-existent....everything is just perfectly balanced."

There he stood. In his jersey at the bar. Everybody was pretty flabergasted. To so simply explain the inner mysteries of the current crisis.

I guess that that's whey they called him Jersey Joe.