Funny Business Cartoons

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Business Gurus and Big Thinkers

"You must have a willingness to do something when everyone else is petrified.  You must learn the lesson of following logic over emotion."
- Warren Buffett

When next we see Wooster and Lodi, they  are visiting their business guru, Jimbo Buffett.  Jimbo felt he was uniquely qualified to be a business guru for two reasons.  First, his namesake was Jimmy Buffett.  Wooster, somewhat more versed in "pop" culture,  never corrected his error, and for good reason.  Had Jimbo realized his namesake was the singer Buffett and not the financial wizard Buffett, he might have pursued a career in music rather than in business. And Wooster and Lodi would have been without their valued business guru.   Even so, he was blessed with a rich baritone.

Secondly, Jimbo didn't believe himself uniquely qualified  as a business guru because of any profound knowledge or business expertise. Rather,  he felt he possessed unusual insight because of the abject failures of every business venture he had attempted.  Let's sit in on the consultation, shall we?

Wooster and Lodi Seek Business Advice

With all the turmoil and uncertainty surrounding their business ventures, Wooster and Lodi thought it best to pay a visit to Jimbo Buffett.  Jimbo had been their valued business guru for several years now and always had sage advice to offer whenever they hit a bump in the road, which happened quite frequently, as it were.

"Well, howdy, Neighbors!"  Jimbo called in his southern drawl when he saw his two prodigies coming toward him. He looked down from his vantage point on the fourth floor window of the abandoned building that was currently his home.  "Come on up and sit a spell with me.  Ah've got some mighty fine Kentucky Bourbon Ah've  been savin' for ya."

Wooster and Lodi quickened their pace at the invitation and were soon sitting beside their guru on some very comfortable genuine leather car seats from a late model Cadillac.  The seating was arranged artfully so as to offer a  view of the abandoned, and therefore quite serene, parking lot below.

Jimbo, ever the Southern Gentleman, graciously offered his companions a shot of his precious whisky.  Wooster thought back to the time he and Lodi had considered investing in "liquid" assets like whisky.  Lodi was correct: It had been all too tempting to dip into their supply.

"What brings you two entrepreneurs this way?  I know y'all've been pretty busy with your treasure huntin' and valuables scavanagin'."  Jimbo had his own particular way with words and could make the most mundane of activities take on an air of gentility.

"That's what we're here about," Wooster answered.  "Our dumpster diving has, well, taken a dive.  They've relocated our best ones. And there's just not a much good stuff in them anymore, anyways."

"And there's so many folks getting into this business, the market is too crowded," Lodi chimed in from over the rim of his glass.  He had been taking deep breaths of the liqueur for several minutes before drinking it so as to extend the experience.

"And there's so much cheap stuff coming in from China," Lodi went on. "The Thrift stores we sell to can't compete. It's eating away at our market share and profit margins."  Disheartened by focusing so much on their business woes, he downed the Bourbon in one gulp.

"Well, what you boys need is a 'competitive strategy', Jimbo got up to generously refill Lodi's glass.  "But Ah warn you, it may involve some unpleasant choices."

"I don't know, Jimbo," Lodi lamented.  "I don't do 'unpleasant choices'." His face, however,  brightened somewhat as his glass filled up.

"What do you mean by 'competitive stratedy?" Wooster wanted to know.  "It sounds complicated."

"No, no, now don't get y'self all in a bother.  You just need some tools to predict the future."

This all was sounding intriguing and Wooster and Lodi, in the after glow of the fine Kentucy Bourbon, felt their friend was once again ready to send a gem of financial wisdom their way.  They settled back expectantly into their "rich Corinthian leather" seats.

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

The Path To Big Money Has Many Turns

"Economic history is a never-ending series of episodes based on falsehoods and lies, not truths.  It represents the path to big money.  The object is to recognize the trend whose premise is false, ride that trend, and step off before it is discredited."  - George Soros

Wooster found Lodi in a sorry state.  He was sitting by a tree, on his knees, rocking back and forth with head in hand.

Alarmed, Wooster ran to his friend and oft-times business partner.  "What's up, Lodi,"  Wooster implored.   "Why are you so upset? What's happened? Did you get a headache from my bitcoin dissertation yesterday?"

"They've relocated our dumpster," a muffled voice from Lodi's hands moaned pitifully.

"Relocated our dumpster!" exclaimed Wooster, becoming alarmed himself at the potential adverse effect on their livelihood.  "But why? Where...?"  His own hands flew up involuntarily, holding the sides of his face as if to shut out this grave news.

"The why I don't have a clue, the where....two blocks down the street.  You know what they say about 'location', 'location', 'location', Wooster.  Well this new location only gets one 'location'. It doesn't rate the other two. No, not by a long shot."  Lodi returned his head to his hands and continued rocking back and forth in dismay.

"This relocation could impact our thrift stores market," Wooster opined, alarm still in his voice even as his crafty brain was moving on to assess this grave economic data.  "I'll have to revise my estimates on our recycling revenues." He positioned himself beside his friend by the tree and leaned back to think.

 "I don't know," Lodi paused moaning and  looked at his friend beside him for guidance.  " Maybe we've been riding this trend a little too long.  Maybe it's time to bail out and find the next big thing."

"You're absolutely right, my friend.  This could be our wake up call that basic sentiment has weakened in the recycling sector, at least in the easy pickin's from that dumpster, and it's time for us to move on."

"I'll have to admit,"  Lodi concurred.  "There's been a mixed performance lately." He paused a moment, then went on. "It's just my... you know...risk aversion.  I get a little queasy just thinking about starting over with something new."

Indeed, at that very moment, Lodi's complexion took on a greenish hue and he began to heave.  Wooster took out a paper sack and handed it to his friend.  "Here, breath into this."

After his friend regained his composure,  Wooster patted him on the back and gave him a sympathetic look.

"I have just the thing for  that 'risk aversion' of yours, Lodi.  It's called 'mind body connection'.  There's a class on that very thing in the park we can sit in on.  There's a nice comfy culvert pipe very close by that will give us a perfect seat."

Lodi's face immediately became a more attractive shade.  "You always come up with an answer, Wooster."

Heartened by the prospect of taking on a new endeavor without the pain of "risk aversion", Wooster and Lodi left their tree and headed off toward the park.

Monday, June 30, 2014

Bitcoins and Other Collectables

"Success consist of going from failure to failure without loss of enthusiasm." Winston Churchill

This quote reminds me of our dear characters, Wooster and Lodi.  When last we visited with them (alas, alack, lo these many months ago), they were discussing their cash flow and lack thereof.  Let's check back in, why don't we, and see how these two ineffectual's are getting along. 

Leaning back on his favorite park bench, Wooster is perusing another abandoned Wall Street Journal.  Lodi, meanwhile, is busy searching for any cigarette  butts that may have made their way under the seat.

"Hey, Lodi.  Looks like Bitcoins are back in favor again."  Wooster called out to his friend and sometimes business partner.  "Weren't you collecting them at one time?"

"No, that was quarters with all the States on the front. Came out a few years ago," Lodi responded from underneath the seat.  "I had all fifty, too.  But I ran out of change at the launder-mat last fall and had to use them."

"That's too bad,"  Wooster commented.  "Those quarters were minted in limited quantities, ya know. They're probably worth a pretty penny by now."

"Yeah, I know.  I had to get my trousers washed, though, with winter coming on. So what's this Bitcoin?"

"Well, from what I can gather," Wooster explained to his broke but otherwise clean companion, "Bitcoins are a form of digital currency used to pay for personal and business transactions."

"O.K.,  do you keep your bitcoins in a bank or under your bed?"  Lodi stopped long enough from his cigarette butt search to peer over Wooster's shoulder at the article.  His interest was peeked at the prospect of a new kind of currency, though he was still trying to master the fundamentals of the dollar (and the quarter too, come to think of it.)

"No, according to this article, bitcoins aren't kept in banks per se.  And it would be a little hard to put a 'digital' under your mattress, I would imagine.  Bitcoin transactions are recorded in 'public ledgers'.  These ledgers are kept on servers and you can join."

"So, these bitcoins aren't something you carry around with you," Lodi's brow furrowed as he pondered this new money concept. "How would I ever do my laundry?"

Wooster took a deep breath, in preparation of a long and possibly fruitless explanation.

Sunday, January 2, 2011

New Year's Resolution: A Positive Cash Flow

Full of New Year's feasting, bleary eyed from watching Bowl games on their new-old T.V. retrieved from their dumpster dive, Wooster and Lodi are once again seated at their favorite park bench.  With the new year lying stretched out before them, full of promise and hope, they are planning their financial future.

"Well, Lodi, it's a brand new year.  Have you made any New Year's resolutions?" Wooster ask his sometimes-business partner and full-time friend.

"As a matter of fact, I have, Wooster."  Lodi flipped through his note pad where he'd been scribbling his thoughts, plans and brain-storms. "My number one resolution is to consume less.  After that enormous meal we rescued from our favorite restaurant's trash last night, I had to let out a notch on my belt."

"For a moment there I thought you meant "consume less" as in products and durable goods.  We've basically got that one down pat.  Everything we use is what someone has tossed out, surely making us poster boys  for next "Earth Day".

"That, too." Lodi returned to his list.  "It's reached the point, though,  where we're going to have to create some cash flow, Wooster.  "This dumpster diving is getting kind of crowded these days.  At some point, there'll be more divers than contributors.  Sorta like Social Security."

"You're right," Wooster agreed.  "Let's make sure our cash flow is 'positive' from now on.  That's why we're in the shape we're in, all our cash flow was 'negative'.  Only the government can sustain a financial strategy like that."

"That's a great plan, Wooster," Lodi said as he added a new line to his New Year's resolution list.  "Then, when the dumpsters get over-crowded, we'll be ready to make our own contributions.  It's beautiful how life comes full-circle - if you have the right plan."

"Plan and execute," Wooster said as he started making notes of his own.  "'Plan your work and work your plan' - that's what my Daddy always said."

"This year, let's make Positive Cash Flow our goal.  I love this time of year...."

Wooster and Lodi returned to work feverishly on their new plan for the new year, with achieving a "Positive Cash Flow" as their shared objective.  All around, shoppers were scurrying to the next after-Christmas, end-of-year, buy-one-get-one-free sale as they cleared out their closets and garages to make room for the new stuff.  The dumpster would be refilled once again.

"Cash Flow"

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Which is Better: A Real Christmas Tree or Fake?

As they rearrange the contents of their culvert pipe home to accommodate the new finds from their latest dumpster dive expedition, Wooster and Lodi ponder one of the burning questions of the day:  Which would have less impact on the environment: a real Christmas tree or a fake Christmas tree?

Wooster, taking a break to rest his back, looked around at their small but adequate living space.  "That T.V. we found is going to take up a lot of room.  We need to save space for the Christmas tree."

"Funny you should bring it up, I've been thinking about what we should do about this year's tree all day," Lodi said as he stooped down to straighten a rug.  "I've been wondering about which is better for Mother Earth, a real or a  fake tree."

Wooster looked over at his friend and business partner.  "Well, you know, those trees we get out of the dumpster after Christmas just never do make it until the following year.  The needles keep falling off no matter how much super glue you use. It usually ends up just bare branches and a trunk."

"I know.  Maybe we should look a little harder for a fake one.  We could put it away and use it year after year and not have to look for another Christmas tree ever again."

"Yeah, your right," Wooster agreed.  "Think of the man hours we'd save, the shoe leather we would conserve not going from dumpster to dumpster searching for the perfect tree?"

"And don't forget the super-glue we wouldn't have to use.  That alone would have to lower our carbon footprint considerably."

"Let's see, Lodi....we don't have a car, we're off the grid, everything we have is made of recycled materials (seeing as how it all comes from the dumpster)...Our carbon footprint is already pretty darn low, wouldn't you say?"

"Everybody can always do a little more, Wooster."  Lodi said over his shoulder as he lit the candles ahead of the fading evening light. 

.....Next Post....


Friday, December 10, 2010

Recycling As A Lifestyle

Wooster and Lodi peruse the contents of the dumpster with energy and purpose.  They always find something valuable on their daily "dives".

Wooster jumped back in excitement.  "Look, Lodi.  A perfectly good projector T.V.  It never ceases to amaze me - the things people throw away.  We can put it on the perfectly good T.V. stand we found last week. "

"Great, "  Lodi looked up from his own search to admire Wooster's find.  "A few more components for those solar panels and we can watch the New Year's eve ball drop in Times Square next month.  You know, it won't be long before a plasma flat screen shows up."

"Until recycling catches on with the general public, we've got it made.  Living in a 'throw away' society is working out great for us."  Wooster returned to his search.  "I guess I'm sort of a new-age optimist.  I believe whatever we need will eventually show up in one of these dumpsters.  We have so much to be thankful for."

"Amen,"  Lodi affirmed as he considered a lovely avocado green refrigerator lying underneath a huge pile of beeny babies and cabbage patch dolls.  "It's in abundance."

....Next Post...

Resources: Business Cartoons

Monday, December 6, 2010

Precious Metals Or Whiskey As An Investment

Wooster and Lodi make their way toward their favorite dumpster, saving the newspaper for the cold weather predicted for the coming night.  Lodi is curious to know Wooster's new investment plan.

"So, Wooster," Lodi enquired,"you've got that gleam in your eye.  Have you brainstormed a new investment strategy for us?"

Wooster turned to his friend and long-time business partner, eager to get Lodi's input on his bright new idea.  "I think it's time we changed our whole approach.  I'm trying to decide which would make a better investment, Precious Metals or Whisky. We've done pretty good with Aluminum in the past.  Those cans add up over time. What do you think?"

"That's a no-brainer, Wooster.  Whisky is the obvious choice."

"What makes you so sure, Lodi? 

"Whisky's more liquid."

"That's true," Wooster agreed.  "But I think it's also a riskier investment, though."

"In what way?"

"It would be awfully easy to "dip" into your nest egg - so to speak.  You might drink up all you profits, draining your nest egg before you reach retirement age."

"That's probably true, Wooster.  But I'm sure we'd make significant gains in friends by having a large portfolio of whiskies...we should diversify, though.  Add some burbouns, some fine wines..."

"I'm all for a nice Chardonay, Lodi, but never Merlot,." Wooster insisted as he pried open the dumpster lid.

"No," Lodi agreed as he focused his attention on the potential treasure under the lid.  "Never Merlot."

....Next Post....

Resources: Humorous Illustrations and Business Art