Dear Irregular Jonathan,
A friend of my co-worker's cousin works at a Dairy Queen along the interstate in Oklahoma. He says that a couple of months ago he was taking an order for a malt from the owner of the local bank, when Warren Buffett, famous for being the world's most successful investor, walked in through the front doors.
The bank owner of course recognized Mr. Buffett, and being an ambitious man, walked right up to him and asked him what his secret to investing was. The two walked over to a booth. Now, all of the tables were already clean, but my co-worker's cousin's friend went out and pretended to wipe them down so that he could hear what they said.
"Sir," said Mr. Buffett, "I don't know who you are, but you look like an ambitious fellow, and I think you just might learn something. Besides, no one ever asks me for advice, so I'm going to go ahead and tell you my secret. Are you ready?" The bank owner nodded his head.
"Son, I don't have a secret. I guess I'm just lucky. I started out putting some money down on some stocks, and they happened to be the right ones. I've been lucky ever since. Statistically speaking, with all of the fools out there trusting their money to this and that business, someone had to be as lucky as me. But honestly, I don't know what I'm doing." Mr. Buffett got up to leave.
"Mr. Buffett! Mr. Buffett!" the bank owner yelled. "You can't be serious. Come on, we're both businessmen. You can tell me."
"Okay. I'll tell you what. People like you and I, we don't make money." Mr. Buffett pointed to my co-worker's cousin's friend and said, "People like this young fellow make money. They earn it by working. We just convince them to give it to us so that we can use it. We make ourselves richer by sitting back and letting constructive, but gullible, workers give us their money. We get the profits. More often than not, they end up with a loss. Then we lend them their money back, with interest. That's the secret."
"If you want to make an investment," said Mr. Buffett, "invest in yourself. Read something. No, not Tom Clancy, I mean a good book. You know, the kind with ideas in it. Here's another idea. Go home and spend more time with your family. And one more thing: try investing in your community by giving back all that money that you made off of hard working people like this young fellow here. Let me show you how."
Mr Buffett got up, walked over to my co-worker's cousin's friend, and wrote him a check for $30,000, saying, "That's how much you deserve for working in a dump like this."Then he left.
My co-worker's cousin's friend went to the bank, where the owner personally processed the check. It was taken out in cash.
Like I said before I know that this really happened because my co-worker heard it straight from his cousin, whose friend got the check.
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