June 6, 2018



Let’s make a deal! Let’s make a deal!
We all have that friend, or maybe a relative, that is always looking for a deal. Maybe you are the friend or relative that is looking for “the deal.”
You know what I mean. It is the person that will spend a day going to rummage sales, looking for that painting they can take to an Antique Roadshow and sell for $1.3 million, after they bought it for 50 cents at a rummage sale along Highway 21. Or they sleep in the street when it is 15 below because they want to be the first one in line when Walmart opens in the morning and they can buy a eight foot wide TV to put in their eight foot wide house.
We all have that relative that has wonderful moneymaking ideas. It is something that is a “cannot miss” idea. We will be in on the ground floor. For a small investment of something like $25,000, in less than six months we will be millionaires, or do I dare dream, billionaires! Then, just when you are about to nod your head to this get rich deal, your partner asks if you have $20 to buy lunch.
And you listen patiently to the spiel, then explain that if you had $25,000 you would make your tractor payment, or pay down those cows you borrowed money for last week. My banker would be happier with that.
I’ve got this one friend who does dream big. In the space of a week, we have nearly become millionaires by discovering the first sand in North Dakota that will make frac sand. This is a tremendous opportunity! How all of the geologists employed in the oil industry missed this is amazing. I can’t wait to invest.
But before we do the frac sand, we are investing in “shrooms.” I didn’t know what “shrooms” were. They are hallucinogenic mushrooms. You know. The ones that became popular decades ago. They allow you to see purple elephants and dancing giraffes and stuff. They grow along the windbreak where you winter your cows. I’m not sure if it is the mushroom or the manure that gives them a rather acidic taste. I hope we make enough money to pay for the attorneys we will need to stay out of prison.
Now this week my friend needed a new four-wheeler. I suppose to fix fence, dig sand, check cows, and search for “shrooms.” He found one in Bismarck. Used. Heavily used. But in excellent shape. For only $2,500! Cheap! The guy had just gone through the entire machine. Excellent!
My friend offered him $2,300. Just to make the deal sweeter. The seller quickly accepted. The deal was done.
A bit later, the seller called back. His wife was having a garage sale and was selling some of her own paintings! She was an artist. And like many aspiring artists, the sale was going slow. These wonderful paintings were priced like at $20. And they weren’t selling.
So the guy called up my friend and said he would knock another $50 off the four-wheeler if he would stop by the garage sale, fall in love with one of these paintings, and buy it for $20.
My friend couldn’t resist a deal like that. He “loved” the painting. And made $30. Enough money to invest in pull-tabs at happy hour.