Apollo Investment Management 

'Twas... 2001

'Twas the night before Christmas, and Fruit was a-Looming,
This new acquisition had Buffett's mind zooming,
Underwear concepts pervaded his mind,
His research and field-testing he had combined,
He'd learned about boxers, briefs, spandex, and tees,
Leg openings, waistbands, and old BVDs,
Yes, to drawers, skivvies, undies, and foundation garmaments,
For weeks he'd directed his rational armaments,
He'd worn fifty pairs of the best of the brief,
To gain practical knowledge of which was the chief,
Now he sat with his Cherry Coke down by the fire,
And considered the rest of his business empire,

"Berkshire's products," he mused, "can make every life grand,
If our customers need it, we have it to hand,
Be it bricks, boots, or paint, a compressor or jet,
We ensure that our customers' needs are all met,
We provide every basic life-aiding enhancement,
Like soft drinks, news, clothing, and candy-romancement,
We please ev'ry customer all through the day,
To make all of them happy, Berk sure hath a way!

But the best thing about us, the part I adore,
Is that each of these businesses is such a bore,
The duller the business, the surer the profit,
It's buck after buck and our rivals can't stop it!

Yes, dull dull and dull is the business I like,
Those flashy ideas can go take a hike!
Quotidian basics are our surest fare,
And what could be duller than Fruit's underwear?"
He harrumphed, then accomp'nied by sounds rather snorefeous,
Floated into the embraces of Morpheus,

"Oh Warren," a sultry voice cooed in his ear,
"This Fruit acquisition has filled me with fear,
It's not that the business is mired in the muck,
It's just that their product line makes me say 'Yuck!'"

Buffett turned, took a look, and his jaw hit the floor,
For the sight he beheld was too much - and then more,
A tall, nubile woman, in lingerie clad,
On her head a green eyeshade, in one hand a pad,
The expanse of soft skin that her two-piece revealed,
Made it easy to visualize what was concealed,
Her top barely present, her g-string so scanty,
(There weren't enough threads there to call it a panty,)
This curvy conversant so tall and so slick,
He knew it a moment it must be St. Vick!

Her eyes, how they twinkled! Her cheekbones so high,
Helped to set off the curves of her neck, back, and thigh,
Her soft, parted lips were drawn up in a bow,
Showing bright, even teeth that were white as the snow,
There was no body fat on her thighs or her tum,
Just smooth, lissome, soft, shapely arms, legs, and bum,
Her well-rounded breasts stood like peaks 'bove her belly,
They shook when she laughed like two bowls full of silicone,
Her all-over tan gave her skin a warm glow,
And a lustre of midday above and below,
The effect, overall, was completely immodest,
For Vick was a sensual, luscious young goddess!

The effect on poor Buffett I can't overstate,
For no mortal man would not appreciate,
All the glittering charms of the lovely St. Vick,
When it comes to seduction, she knows every trick,
So let me be clear, he was not being rude,
When from under his brow both his eyes did protrude,
And the river of spittle, the panting and sweats,
Are responses that St. Vicki normally gets,
Of a kind with the brain-frying harmonic trance,
That enchained Buffett's mind when she started to dance,

"Now Warren, dear Warren," she said, undulating,
Her bosom and pelvis both counter-gyrating,
"No serious underwear buyer buys Fruit,
About their silly products no one gives a hoot,
Their numbers may work but their undies are lame,
In a field where excitement's the name of the game,"
As she said this, St. Vick her intent underlined,
By engaging in some of the old bump-and-grind,

"Just look here on eff are you eye tee dot com,
This stuff's all old hat - like it's made for my Mom!
An old gunnysack would have that much allure,
The time is long past for the simple and pure,
If to modern consumers you want to appeal,
What's needed are garments that cling and reveal,"

Illustrating this claim with a pose most erotic,
Poor Buffett's thought process now verged on chaotic,
"New products," said she, with a come-hither pout,
"Chuck the old out the door, and don't dither about,
It is clear why an underwear business excels,
For Victoria's secret is simple - Sex Sells!
If you want to sell Fruit's underwear by the truck,
Just appeal to man's basic compulsion to mate!
With new lingerie splendid your business will shine,
and you'll change dull old Fruit to an undie gold mine!"

So saying, she shimmied, and that oscillation,
When followed by soft lips in warm osculation,
Shook Buffett right out of his hypnotic trance,
While in his head visions of sugarplums danced,
Now free of her spell, he cried "I see the light!
Now I know how to do this new business up right!"
Then out of his chair he arose with a clatter,
He sprang 'cross the room and he grinned a grin at her,
The words tumbled forth from his feverish brain,
And he spoke with a rhythm quite close to insane,

"We'll start out with catalogs festooned with gals,
(Will you do me the favor of asking your pals?)
We'll display all those bodies, so long, lithe, and supple,
With them in the book, profit's sure to quintuple,
The Annual Meeting will be a great place,
For those ladies to show off silk, satin, and lace,
We'll make them the stars of our new ad campaign,
And I'll whistle and shout and I'll call them by name,

'Now Heidi! Now Eva! Now Rhea and Molly!
On Tyra! On Karen! On Alek and Holly!'
Their gorgeous physiques will make such a big splash,
We'll need double-E bras just to hold all the cash!

Then we'll open up stores in strip centers and malls,
And the buyers will rush in like Niagara Falls,
The stockings we'll hang by the panties with care,
In the hope that our shoppers will purchase a pair,
No more 'Ma in her kerchief"; she'll turn up the heat,
In a g-string, spiked heels, and a Wonderbra - Sweet!

But a name for the chain - well, it's got to be catchy,
We'll have to find one they'll recall in Wenatchee,
Let's see . . . I don't know . . . we may just have to tough it -
Eureka! I've got it! The name? In The Buffett!
And as for the gals who our image create,
Why, the phrase Charlie's Angels will suit them just great!
It's a winner! I know it! A rousing success,
That will let Berkshire's managers show their prowess!

We'll have sales, cross-promotions, and gimmicks so slick --

'With every two bras, get a free Acme brick!'

'Won't some nice Justin Boots go just swell with that teddy?'

'To wear that, Gillette's stuff will help you get ready.'

We'll up-sell and cross-sell - we'll take it so far,

'Some insurance, Madame, will enhance that peignoir,'

'While you're buying those panties (which look quite incredible),
Why not some See's Candies? For they too are edible.'

'52 double-D? Yes, it's here in the dresser,
Inflation's your thing, if I'm any assessor,
So don't miss this new Campbell-Hausfeld compressor!'

It's SYNERGY! Yes, that most overused word,
When we cross-sell our products our sales will be spurred!
It's the crowning accomplishment of my career!
I'll set the whole business world right on its ear!"
Buffett danced with excitement, his visage grew wild,
And he shouted and leaped like an eight-year-old child,
"I never knew business could be such a tonic,
It's making my former life look catatonic,
Wine, women, and song for the rest of my stint,
Once I tap-danced to work - from now on I will sprint!
And with Hef I'll build something to hold folks in awe,
It's the new Playboy Mansion - in West Omaha!

"WARREN!" - a raucous voice called through the door,
For a moment the room seemed to whirl, skip, and soar,
And when things stopped their whirling, he looked all around,
And saw good old St. Vick was nowhere to be found,
"Your hamburger's ready!" the voice called once more,
"Get down here and eat it - I'm off to the store,"
He blinked a few times, looked again, but no Vick,
"A dream?" muttered Buffett, "Now where is that chick?"
And laying a finger aside of his nose,
He took a deep breath, and he from the chair rose,

It was then that he noticed the gloss-papered flyer,
On top of the table right next to the fire,
He grabbed at the book, brought it up to his eyes,
And 'twas now that he met with a second surprise,
On the front was a woman of beauty so rare,
Wearing soft silky nothings and flow'rs in her hair,
It could plainly be seen that the book placed on offer,
The goods that Victoria's Secret stores proffer,

He studied the picture and muttered "Oh, Lord,
Am I losing my mind? Am I out of my gourd?"
He looked at her face and he gave a small nod,
And he thought he saw something decidedly odd,
He could swear she had looked up and flashed him a wink,
Then reverted to form - not a breath, not a blink.

Buffett shook his head, swallowed, then called out in kind,
"Be right down," hoping lunch would refurbish his mind,
He walked to the door with a gait most portentous,
And though he was groggy, not quite compos mentis,
He heard a soft whisper from just out of sight,
"Merry Christmas to all - and to all a good night!"

by 'Usually Reasonable'
Originally posted at http://boards.fool.com/Message.asp?mid=16282402

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