Archive | General Ramblings RSS feed for this section

Pfizer- Allergan Merger Sets a Trend

30 Nov

Amid all the controversy surrounding Irish company Allergan’s proposed takeover of the much bigger Pfizer in a move designed to slash the combined company’s tax bill, a trend is becoming apparent. To find out more, I caught up with Paddy O’Shaughnessy, whose company “O’Shaughnessy’s Used Cars and Small Engine Repair” has just announced its agreement to take over General Motors of Detroit. We met at the proposed new HQ of “O’Shaughnessy International” in the Fiddler’s Elbow pub in Ballaghaderreen, County Roscommon.

Critics of the deal have leveled the accusation that it is an outrageous scheme to stick it to the US taxpayer, but, over a lunchtime pint of Guinness, O’Shaughnessy vigorously disputed this claim. “Combining the two businesses makes a lot of commercial sense. They’re complimentary, you see. If you turn up at the head office of General Motors in Detroit today looking for a used Ford Transit van, you’re basically out of luck. Same thing with a broken lawn mower. Nobody there can repair it. They’re turning away business. Under the new arrangement, they could bring that lawnmower to us and Seamus will have it fixed within five working days or your money back, provided it’s nothing difficult.”

When I suggested that this was a pretty flimsy pretext for a dodgy deal, O’Shaughnessy became irate and pointed to a man sitting at the end of the bar. “If it’s dodgy deals you’re after, why don’t you go and talk to Michael over there?”

Michael was just about to leave, but he agreed to be interviewed as we walked to his shop in the company of the young lady who had been sitting next to him in the pub. I asked him if he knew what was behind the O’Shaughnessy – General Motors merger. “Sure, it’s obvious. He’s had a thing for Siobhan here for ages. Thinks his multi-billion dollar deal is going to impress her with what a big man he is.”
“And will it?” I asked.
“Fat chance,” he scoffed, opening a door beneath a sign reading “Michael Gallagher Greengrocer, Head Office of Coca Cola, Inc.”

A Comparative Study of the Effectiveness of Different Doughnut Types in Maximizing the Impact of Business Presentations

14 Sep

Readers of The Management Secrets of T. John Dick will be aware of the many benefits of having done so. Foremost among these, of course, is membership in a very exclusive club. Lesser authors might be frustrated by such a relatively small readership, but I judge success by quality, not quantity, and by that criterion my work has been a triumph. Frankly, I wouldn’t want just anybody reading my books, and in this I have been spectacularly successful. I hope you feel special. You certainly should.

But there are other benefits too. The insights and tips contained in The Management Secrets of T. John Dick have been invaluable to readers in managing their business and personal lives. They range from the benefits of applying the latest management principles to your marriage (you’re welcome ladies) to the appropriate way to respond to customers’ promises to set their dogs on you if you ever come near them again. But perhaps the single most important piece of expert advice in a book that is practically bursting its binding with pieces of expert advice is this: if you want to be taken seriously, always be sure to serve doughnuts at your meetings. Well, not you personally of course – have someone set them out on a table before the meeting. This will emphasize your position in the office hierarchy. After all, not everyone has the authority to provide doughnuts at their meetings.

You will understand then why I was intrigued to read this article from the BBC, concerning idiosyncracies of the British workplace. Most of the article deals with the importance of serving tea. Disappointingly there was no mention of doughnuts and I began to wonder how (or if) British business manages to function at all.  Then, amongst all the woolly feelgood nonsense concerning office camaraderie, I cam across this gem:

“A study by biscuit baker, Thomas J Fudges, of 2,000 British workers, revealed one in four would be more likely to close a deal in a meeting because of the biscuits provided, with shortbread, chocolate bourbons and flapjacks all likely to win a favourable reaction.”

This is pretty powerful stuff. It leads me to believe that a comparable study should be carried out on this side of the Atlantic. Several executives of equivalent experience and presentation skills could lead meetings identical in every respect with the exception of the types of doughnuts provided to the attendees. Would an executive with powdered cinnamon doughnuts command more respect than his plain doughnutted rival? Would an executive who served a wide variety of doughnuts be viewed as someone able to see the big picture or simply as  indecisive? Would a presenter who served glazed raspberry filled doughnuts find his audience’s attention distracted by the concentration required to eat said doughnuts without dribbling on their ties? Would he find his own concentration impaired by the sight of raspberry jelly on his listeners’ chins? Perhaps most importantly of all, which variety of doughnuts takes the longest to eat and is consequently most effective in preventing listeners from asking awkward questions?

I’m not sure if the editors of the Harvard Business Review have read The Management Secrets of T. John Dick or follow my blog. Frankly, I’m not sure if they would meet the stringent qualifications I mentioned above. But if they happen to be part of my exclusive readership, then I think the least they could do would be to offer to publish the results of this research, if I ever get around to conducting it. Maybe if I offered them a nice cup of tea and a chocolate bourbon?

Russian Fiction – And I don’t mean Tolstoy

11 Apr

In 1976 I found myself in East Berlin. I had crossed over for the day from the West to explore the historic center of the city and to feel that frisson of weird menace you sensed when walking about in a communist country. At the crossing point I made the compulsory exchange of 6.50 Deutschmarks for the same amount in bouncy plastic Ostmarks, which I would not be allowed to bring back out. No problem, I thought – how difficult can it be to spend 6.50 marks?

berlin 1976

A young Augustus Gump in 1976 Berlin. Under communism all images of future literary giants were blurred

The answer was, as it turned out, surprisingly difficult. There was nothing to buy in East Berlin. After walking along Unter den Linden, where thirty years after the end of the war there were still a few holes in the ground where buildings had once stood (probably just as well, as they would otherwise no doubt have been filled in by monstrous communist architecture), I eventually found a restaurant. I sat down at the opposite side of the large dining room from the two other diners and, after about fifteen minutes, was presented with the biggest menu I had ever seen. There were literally hundreds of items. So much for all that capitalist propaganda about the drab austerity of the east! I eventually settled on a dish and, when the waiter returned about half an hour later, I attempted to order it. He shook his head. They didn’t have that. I chose something else. Again the shake of the head. How about this? No. Well what do you have? He pointed at a single item, a meatbally thing, if I recall correctly and departed, I presumed to fetch it. Forty-five minutes later, with no meatball in sight, I left, suffering from a rumbling tummy and a surfeit of metaphors for the communist system.

Back on the street, I realized that I had hours to go before I had to leave and no idea how to fill them, when my eyes were drawn to the jarring sight, some way down the avenue, of a goose-stepping soldier. Drawing nearer, I realized that he was Russian and that the building before which he was slapping his jackboots on the pavement – irony was in short supply in East Berlin, not just meatballs – was a museum celebrating the “Great Patriotic War.”

Inside I found an exhibition of photographs, maps and objects depicting the Red Army’s single-handed triumph over the Nazis. To an unbrainwashed observer, the most striking thing was that in all the many rooms, on all the many maps and in all the many detailed descriptions of the course of the war, there was not a single mention of the western front or Russia’s allies. Not a mention of D-Day, North Africa, the Italian campaign or even the thousands of British sailors who lost their lives on the ships of the arctic convoys carrying the supplies that saved the Soviet Union. It was as if none of this ever happened, a big blank space in history like the big blank space in the shape of West Berlin that appeared on East German maps.

There were other blank spaces, of course – Stalin’s alliance with Hitler, the carving up of Poland, the massacre of Polish officers and intellectuals, the invasion of Finland, the deliberate delay in capturing Warsaw to allow the Nazis to suppress the uprising there, the subjugation and oppression of eastern Europe after the war, the mass deportations of whole nations of supposed collaborators.

Fast forward to 2015, and how little has changed, as is shown by this snippet from the BBC. A gallery in Yekaterinburg has mysteriously closed for repairs, just as an exhibition of the work of British and American war photographers was about to open. The official fiction of the Soviet Union’s isolated stand against tyranny continues, as does the more damaging fiction of the country’s unblemished heroism during those dark years. Unlike the Germans, the Russians, as victors in the conflict, have never been made to confront the horrific deeds they committed. This seems to leave them with the belief, despite all evidence to the contrary, that they are the good guys in any situation. If you can swallow the fiction of the Great Patriotic War, now being celebrated so enthusiastically in Russia, how difficult can it be to swallow the fiction of the oppression of Russian speakers in Ukraine and unleash your heroic military might on your neighbours?

I finally spent some of that 6.50 Marks on a currywurst and a beer, both of which later emerged little changed by the digestive process. I accidentally smuggled the remaining money back to the west where I lost it when it fell out of my pocket as I was buying a proper currywurst and bounced two feet in the air and into some bushes.

Talking through his hat – if he had one

22 Jan

Every year two events take place, which on the surface bear a passing resemblance to each other.

State of the UnionIn a country that prides itself on it’s no nonsense, get-it-done ethos and professes little time for ritual trappings, pomp and ceremony, a man stands up to deliver a speech outlining his lofty ideals and proposals for the coming legislative year. His soaring rhetoric is broadcast live and analyzed for days or even weeks by various pundits and talking heads. None of the proposals contained in the speech will ever happen.

A few months later, in a country with a whole tourist industry built on the desire of people from the first country to see men in bright red coats and silly furry hats remain totally motionless for hours, an old lady in a silly shiny hat, from whom the first country fought a war to free itself, sits virtually motionless for an hour in a very big chair and reads out a legislative program as if it were a shopping list. Nobody pays it much attention. Virtually all of it will happen in the coming year.

For people in the first country, if they ever become frustrated by how pointless the splendid occasion they are witnessing really is, the answer is simple. To render it less ridiculous, and take a step towards a functioning democracy, make the guy wear a silly hat. After all, the last time their democracy worked, they were all wearing wigs.

Apologies for not providing a photograph of the Queen’s speech to Parliament. I couldn’t find one that was royalty-free.

Keeping Romance Alive in California

20 Oct

If you are a college student in California, a new “Yes Means Yes” law requires that you obtain “affirmative, conscious, and voluntary agreement” from a prospective sexual partner.  Implied consent, the absence of a “no” or the fact that she is making bedroom eyes at you will no longer be sufficient, and reliance on such outmoded  indications that she is in the mood for love could land you in big trouble.

While the intention of the new legislation is admirable, it seems likely to have a chilling effect on campus frolics and deprive many amorous young ladies of romance, as potential suitors, fearful of the prospect of having to provide definitive proof of consent, are scared to come within ten yards of them. Those who are bold enough to overcome that fear may well stumble over how exactly to obtain consent that will stand up in any disciplinary proceedings if things turn sour.

That’s where I come in, Anxious to keep romance alive, I am providing to the college gals of California, free of charge, this handy Coital Consent Form. No need for awkward or embarrassing conversations with this little beauty in your purse. Just place it on the bar as you leave to powder your nose. By the time you come back, he should just about have it completed.

 

State of California Coital Consent Form

Thank you for your interest in having coitus with me. So that I may properly process your application, please answer the following questions accurately and completely.

1. Name:
please provide two forms of ID. Acceptable documents include passport, government issued driver’s license; cellphone junk shots are not considered acceptable.

2. Address:

3. Age:
Must be over 18 and below 26 years old (but see 5 below)

4. Race:
I am an equal opportunity sexual partner.

5. Income:
(a) Tips from part-time job at off-campus pizza joint
(b) Less than $10,000 p.a.
(c) $10,000 to $50,000
(d) $50,000 to $100,000
(e) Over $100,000
(f) Don’t know. I just get these regular checks from my trust fund
Note: if you answered (e) or (f), please disregard question 3. Actually, you can disregard all the other questions too.

6. Star Sign.
If you are a Sagittarius, I’m sorry, but you are ineligible to have sexual relations with me.

7. Please attach two references from recent sexual partners.

8. If unable to provide references, please state reason. (Check one box only)
(a) My previous sexual partners think I am a creep and want nothing to do with me.
(b) This is kind of embarrassing, but, well, you’ll be my first.
Note: answering (b) does not result in automatic disqualification. I might find it sweet.
(c) I can’t remember the names of my previous sexual partners.
(d) My previous sexual partners are members of congress and revealing their names could be very dangerous for me. Haven’t you see House of Cards?

9. I have checked my schedule for tomorrow and have no urgent appointments or commitments that will necessitate me sneaking out before you are awake.

10. Check any of the following statements which you like to apply to me in furtherance of your application:
(a) I think you are pretty and would really like to know you better.
(b) I’m not staring at your boobs. I’m staring at your heart.
(c) Didn’t we take a class together? I could have sworn we had chemistry.
(d) If you were a booger I’d pick you first.
(e) I’m not trying to impress you or anything, but… I’m Batman!

11. Are you now or have you ever been someone who farts in bed.

12. In not more than 200 words, describe why you think you would be a suitable sexual partner for someone as wonderful as me.
Write quickly – you only have until I get back from the restroom.

Learn a new langue – it doe not have to be difficult

27 Apr

A wonderful piece of spam just came my way.

Speaking a different language doe not have to be difficult.

It’s easy to learn a any language in 10 days.
(link removed)

What langue would you like to learn?

I will be singing up immodiately for this grete offer. I just need to figure out which Nigerian language to learn in order to communicate more effectively with the gentleman who is holding a large amount of money for me there.

 

Have you worked for a corporate Kim?

15 Dec

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un has dismissed his uncle from the many influential government posts he held and expelled him from the Party and, for good measure, had him executed. Perhaps he didn’t applaud long or hard enough, or maybe he didn’t take enough notes. Take a look at the Youtube video. I don’t mean all of it: it seems that North Korean news broadcasts last almost two hours. Two hours of nervous men in uniform clapping loudly or standing with notebooks poised, ready to take down the pearls of wisdom that drop from the Great Comrade’s lips and probably also his sneezes, burps and belly rumblings.

Thank goodness, gentle readers, that none of you have to live in such a bizarre and scary environment. Or at least, I hope you don’t. For I speak to you as one who has been there.

I sometimes get asked if the characters in the T. John Dick novels are based on real people. The answer is usually yes and no. A given character is not based on a single person, but may include traits that I have observed in colleagues over the years, as well as some that just spring from my imagination. In a few cases, however, a character does owe more than a little to someone in my past.

Outside a meeting room in a non-descript modern office building, two shell-shocked junior executives stand by the water cooler, struggling to manoeuver the little wax paper cups to their mouths with shaking hands.

“How did your presentation go?”

“Not too badly. I made it through OK. Glad it’s over though.”

They turn towards a handsome young product manager, who has just emerged from the meeting room. “How was it?”

“Terrible. A total waste of time. That arse made me jump through all his usual asinine loops, but nothing was decided. What’s the point of having a meeting where nothing is decided?”

The tremulous twosome are stunned. Not just because their colleague, as courageous as he is handsome, has referred to their Supreme Leader as an arse, but because he has defined a meeting as unsuccessful, even though he came through it unscathed, just because nothing was decided. The product manager with the striking good looks is not surprised. He knows that presentations to the company President, lets call him Ray, are not designed to produce results. They are staged for Ray’s entertainment.

Ray’s entertainment takes the form of making people squirm in keeping with their status as worms. To achieve this, he employs a number of techniques which are all too familiar to the dashingly handsome young product manager with the flowing golden locks. In fact, he has made a study of them in the course of many meetings presided over by Ray.

Technique Number 1 – Stone-Faced Contempt: Show absolutely no reaction to the presentation, leaving the unfortunate victim to bumble on incoherently until Ray interrupts him with a question on a completely different topic, demonstrating that the bumbler’s presentation has not been worthy of his attention.

Technique Number 2 – Mid-flow Cut-Off: A variation of Technique Number 1 is to cut the victim off in mid-flow by addressing a remark to somebody else, probably an inside joke to one of his current favorites. The bumbler can crawl back into his shell.

Technique Number 3 – The Spinning Chair of Disdain: In this silent manoeuver, Ray turns his chair to face ninety degrees from the speaker. Positioning is important here. Swing too far, and you could end up looking at the screen, suggesting that it might display something of interest to you.

The prodigiously pulchritudinous product manager never did figure out why Ray behaved the way he did. It was destructive for the company, but at least he did provide a model for the character who bears his name in The Management Secrets of T. John Dick.

What about you? Have you ever worked for a tyrant? What are some of the meeting techniques you have observed from your own corporate Kim?

Ladies and gentlemen, we shall shortly be disemplaning

2 Dec

It wasn’t easy the first time, but I did it. Realizing the waitress wouldn’t understand me if I said “tomahto,” I gritted my teeth and said “tomayto.” She still didn’t understand me. Spotting the problem, I ungritted my teeth and tried again. Success! I had just spoken American.

That was many years ago, and since then I have done my best to adapt. If you study the second sentence above, you will notice that, in deference to the customs of my host country, I have put the quotation marks in the wrong place, after the full stop – sorry, period. I barely winced as I did so. After all, I have written whole books following that illogical practice. And I long ago weaned myself from calling quotation marks inverted commas. You have to make yourself understood by the natives, after all. Besides, that one actually makes sense.

For almost two decades I have cheerfully referred to bonnets as hoods, boots as trunks, lifts as elevators, aubergines as zucchinis, coriander as cilantro and all the rest. The secret to coming to terms with this is to regard American as a foreign language, albeit one that is closely related to English. By applying this doctrine, I was even able to come to terms with calling a herb an “urb.” It wasn’t easy, but with a disciplined mind and strong stomach, anything is possible. Also, it is possible to say “urb” through gritted teeth.

Did I say anything was possible? Well, almost anything. I have discovered a line that I will not cross. This line is represented by that delicious variation on the pizza, the calzone. Even summoning all my will-power and the “when in Rome” adaptability which has served me so well, I just can’t do it. I can’t bring myself to refer to this doughy delight as a “calzoan.” This is the point at which I bring down my fist on the table and cry “Enough, dammit!” Well, I don’t of course – we British don’t like to make a scene – but I still won’t call it a “calzoan.” I just can’t.

After two attempts to make the waiter understand the word “caldzonay,” I point to the item on the menu. “Ah, calzoan, “ he says. I sigh and nod. In my mind, I’m trying my best to call it a draw (that would be a tie to you American readers), but in my heart I know it’s a defeat. Still, it was either that or change my order to a stromboli. And I really wanted a calzoan. I mean caldzonay.

chaise-longue

It’s called a chaise-longue because it’s longue. And a chaise.

The irony does not escape me that, in finally standing up for proper pronunciation of the English language I should have taken a stand in defence of an Italian word. (Defence / defense – I’m on the fense about that one). This is not the first time something like this has happened. I had an attack of the vapors (they are similar to vapours) the first time I heard somebody refer to a “chaise lounge.” I had to sit down while I recovered from the shock, ironically on a chaise longue – yes, that’s how you pronounce it, people. It’s a long chair; the word “lounge” is not French. I would have taken a stand right there in defence (there’s that word again) of the correct use of French words in English, except that it’s hard to take a stand, when you are sitting down suffering from an attack of the vapors. By the time I recovered, about two days later, the chance had gone.

For a speaker of English the way it was meant to be spoken, perhaps the most perplexing part of the American language is a change in meaning of certain words deriving from a long-ago misunderstanding or mistake. Over time, the incorrect usage has become standard. “Alternate” for “alternative” for example. Practitioners of correct English know that “alternate” means every other, or every second, as in “on alternate Tuesdays,” while “alternative” means, well, “alternative.” It is useful to have this distinction, which Americans do not enjoy. Worse is the misuse of the word “momentarily” (spurning the perfectly good “shortly”) to mean “in a moment,” instead of “for a moment.” “We will be landing momentarily.” When I first heard that on an aeroplane, I was understandably concerned. Did the pilot intend to touch down, then take off again without stopping? My fears were groundless, as it turned out, and we were soon informed that we would be deplaning momentarily. Which leads me inexorably to “deplaning.”

Americans have a great talent for inventing words that conveniently and succinctly describe a common activity. Unfortunately, they often do so in a way that causes great pain to insufferable pedants like me. “Deplaning” is a useful word, but fundamentally wrong-headed. It should mean “ridding oneself or another of planes” (as in delousing, deworming). I have yet to encounter anyone with a plane infestation, and I think I would have noticed if I had. The correct word should surely be “disemplaning,” following the example of “disembarking.” Ladies and Gentlemen, we will shortly be “disemplaning.” Doesn’t that sound better? No? Well, I think it does.

Oh, one last thing. I would appreciate it if you Americans out there would take a moment out of your busy day to study the correct pronunciation of the letter “u” or the letter combination “ou.” You are clearly capable of forming the sound “you.” You use it in the words “you use,” after all, and it would seem to amuse you to refuse to confuse the pronunciation of “cute.” You are able to remark on the beauty of a booty with no danger of being misunderstood. So why the devil do you presoom to mispronounce “institoot,” “toon,” “doo” and all the rest? And why do you make fun of me when I pronounce these words correctly? – No, I won’t say “presumably” again. Oh, alright, but this is the last time, and don’t you dare laugh.

It is, of course, your right to behave in this way, but I believe a reasonable case might be made for a constitootional amendment to prohibit the utterance of the syllabic combination “cyoupon.” Someone, long ago inserted the letter “o” into the word “coupon” for the specific purpose of informing you it should be pronounced “coopon.” Otherwise it would be written “cupon.” Presumably that person was French, given the origin of the word, and I know how a lot of you feel about the French, but there’s no need to spit in the eye of someone who was only trying to help. I mean come on. Having gone to all that trouble to eliminate the sound “you” from where it belongs, you now go out of your way to insert it where it clearly doesn’t. Nobody hates the French that much.

Unless, perhaps, the people who insist on saying “chaise lounge.”

Misguided Book Selection a Growing Problem among Malaysian Youth

6 Oct

The decision of what to read is a strange and mysterious process. Sometimes it’s a friend’s recommendation or a review. Other times, it’s more random. I have often plucked a book from a shelf in an idle moment just to flick through a page or two, only to find myself sucked in and still reading it hours later. On other occasions, I have failed to be engrossed and simply replaced the book and gone about my business. I found myself pondering this question when considering my failure as an author of workplace comedies set in the marketing department of a US corporation to appeal to the key demographic of fourteen-year-old Malaysian boys.

What, I wonder, led the unfortunate Haziq* to pick up The Management Secrets of T. John Dick. It sits on his virtual bookshelf at Goodreads beside Little Women, The Arabian Nights and Lost Treasure of the Emerald Eye by Geronimo Stilton. So far, these are the only four books listed on his shelf, which is quite understandable since he has only been a member for one day. To date, my book is the only one Haziq has rated, and clearly he was not impressed, dishing out my first ever one star rating. Nobody likes to get a one star rating of course, but I suspect that my distress is as nothing compared to Haziq’s at trying to plow through The Management Secrets of T. John Dick. He has my sympathy. Had I been there to guide his reading selection, I would have gently advised against the undertaking. On seeing him take the book from the shelf, I would have placed my hand on the lad’s shoulder, looked him squarely in the eye and said, “This is not the kind of thing for you, Haziq. It is unlikely to appeal to you. If you read it, at some point in the future you will join a social network for readers and give it one star. Put it back on the shelf. Look, here’s a copy of The Arabian Nights. Now, that’s the stuff for you, my boy.”

Haziq is an illustration of a growing problem. Worldwide, a staggering 11 billion** hours are lost annually to injudicious reading material selection (IRMS), and nowhere is the problem greater than in Malaysia. In that country alone, the figure is over 2 billion. By comparison, in neighboring Thailand, that number is only 15 million.

Clearly Haziq feels very strongly about just how bad my book is. Within minutes of joining Goodreads he had shared his feelings with the world and, by his public-spirited action in forewarning other adolescents in oriental countries of the dangers of unwise book selection, he may have averted untold suffering. Indeed, it is tempting to think that he joined Goodreads for the express purpose of doing so. If that’s the case, I am consoled by the fact that at least my novel provoked a strong reaction. Surely that is preferable to indifference.

Whom I am I fooling? As an author, you are always disappointed when someone doesn’t like your book, even if he’s not the kind of chap you would expect to enjoy it. My failure to please Haziq stings. In claiming otherwise, I’m deluding myself as much as my wife, who thinks perhaps Haziq, being new to Goodreads, might not have got the hang of the rating system and thinks one star means this book is great and five stars mean it sucks.

Sorry Haziq. I really think you will like The Arabian Nights, though.

* – Haziq is not his real name. It was, however, number seven in the top boy’s names in Malaysia in 2012. You have the right to expect this kind of rigorous research from a literary giant.

** – There is an 82% probability that all statistics in this article are made up. The margin of error is 18%.

Show Dad what you think of him

19 May

It’s Father’s Day on June 16th, and what better way to show your dad exactly what you think of him than by the gift of his very own copy of “The Management Secrets of T. John Dick” or “The Rise and Fall of T. John Dick?” Or both.

Laughing BuffoonMany dads work in an office, or have done in the past, or know someone who once did. Or they may have visited an office at some time in their life. All compelling reasons to believe that your gift will soon have him chuckling away contentedly and so engrossed in the story that he will turn down your invitation to take him out for dinner, thus saving you valuable dollars. That’s right – buying this book for your old man will actually save you money

Love is priceless, of course, but my books are not. Conscious that the going rate for displays of filial affection is somewhere between eight and ten dollars, the moneygrubbers over at Mainland Press are offering a $2 per book discount until Father’s Day. That is on top of the existing 20% discount and free shipping by US mail, so it’s a heck of a deal. If you’re not convinced, a quick look at the figures should do the trick. You can convey $12.95 of esteem in the form of “The Management Secrets of T. John Dick” for only $8.36, or cheer up the old codger with a copy of “The Rise and Fall of T. John Dick” with a price of $13.95 proudly displayed on the cover. Only you will know that it only cost $9.16.

To take advantage of this offer, just go to the “Books” section of this website and click on the link to add your chosen volume(s) to your cart. At checkout, enter the coupon code “TJ for Dad.”

There’s only one condition. You have to promise the book is really for Dad. No cheating now.

%d bloggers like this: