Drat. I didn't win the big lottery prize, or any part of it.
The can't-miss start-up stock my savviest friend tipped me to last year is worthless already.
Just like my big California land investment of 10 years ago.
I still have the stock certificates for the company that, back in '84, was about to manufacture a 50-mile-per-gallon gizmo to attach to your carburetor. Had the idea of buying a private island in the Carribbean with the profits from that one.
But the sad fact is that I'll still be wallowing among the other 99 percenters on the day I die. Curses on you, my father, for not leaving me a fortune to squander! Oh, yes, for a long time I had hope. Why else to buy a lottery ticket at those odds? But even hope eventually dies, albeit slowly.
But there is still The American Dream. Everyone has an equal chance at The American Dream, right? Isn't that what Capitalism is all about? God Bless America and American Capitalism. And so to sleep . . .
. . . "Gretchen!" (my secretary, who pays more taxes than I do). "Gretchen, call the accountants into the office."
"Yes, sir." (They assemble around the emerald-inlaid oak table in the conference room with a view of the sea.)
"Crunch numbers. How much did I make in the last hour?"
"Nine million, sir."
"That's all? I must spend my way out of this Depression. Buy me four more senators, 10 congressman, a governor and two cruise lines. Also another small country or two."
"Consider it done, sir."
(A few hours later).
Gretchen: "The accountants are back, sir."
"What news, number crunchers? How much have I made since last I saw you?"
"Speak up! How much?"
Milquetoast, the most junior accountant, hesitantly: "A- . . . a- . . . .about 4 billion, sir."
"A mere langiappe! I'll have your heads!! Explain yourselves."
"Sir, you ordered us to buy some countries. (Pause). And we . . . we bought Bangladesh."
"Gretchen! Get me Kim Jong Un on the hotline."
(Red phone rings.)
"Hi there Kimmer, you old Hook Shot! TW here, Dennis Rodman's pal in the USA. I remember you were looking for a place to test your new neutron bomb? Well, I've got the perfect spot and I can let you have it for a mere trillion, give or take a bill."