“Do-buy on optical manufacturers.” C.W. laid his pen aside and stared into space.
“That’s nice,” I said.
“Do-buy on humidity-controlled storage buildings.”
“Super,” I answered.
Actually, I wasn’t really listening. I was reading a book titled A Time For Trumpets, about the Battle of the Bulge, and it was requiring my full concentration to keep the military units straight in my head.
“Do-buy on GlaxoSmithKline.”
That got my attention. I looked from my book to see C.W. in the form of a hollow-eyed young man with greased hair slicked back from his forehead wearing stylish clothes set off by a bright red set of suspenders. “A what for what?”
“A do-buy, you know, as in ‘buy stock’ and grow rich.”
“Who is that you just named?”
“A pharmaceutical company.”
“So you are recommending that people purchase stock in pharmaceutical companies?”
“Oh hell no,” he said. “We’re recommending those for short-selling.”
“My investment firm and my silent partners.”
“What investment firm?”
“And your partners?”
“Can’t tell you. Top secret. Let’s just say they have an uncanny feel for what companies to buy and what companies to sell short.”
“So pharmaceuticals are out?”
“Mostly,” he said, “who the hell’s gonna be able to afford drugs?”
I thought. Good point. “What about the one you named?”
“Oh,” he said. “They’re different. They make Paroxetine.”
“They make what?”
“Paxil,” he said. “Gonna need a lot of that.”
He went back to his work. “Dip-and-Flip on Pfizer, Merck, and Johnson and Johnson.”
“Birth control pills and devices.”
“What about them?”
“Buy like crazy when the economy tanks,” he said. “Babies aren’t too popular then. As soon as the Supreme Court is rounded out, sell and run like hell, hence, ‘dip and flip,’ Get it?”
I groaned. “You mentioned specialized storage buildings.”
“Wives,” he said.
“To store wives in?
“Oh don’t be silly.” He stopped, thought, started to say something, apparently thought better of it, and continued. “They, the wives are raising hell about all the guns and ammunition bought and hoarded during the last eight years. Seems they’re demanding that it be moved out of the house.”
“So, you and your friends are investing in storage buildings?”
“What do you mean, not exactly?”
“Can’t tell you specifically. Let’s just say that someone dear to my partners has a … close… associate who, in turn has other friends that can furnish us with a list of people renting storerooms for this special purpose. Such a list will be a sellable and valuable commodity.”
“We don’t call them that. We call them ‘means facilitators.’ They operate under the corporate name of ‘MFs R Us,’ and they guarantee success in a wide range of ventures.”
I let that one drop. “I think I heard you mention optical manufacturers.”
“Eyeglasses,” he said.
He held up a large glossy photo of our new first lady, nude and in the embrace of another nude lady. “Simple,” he said. He looked at it and shook his head slowly. “I think the word your species uses is ‘hot,’ am I right?”
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