Tin Futures (1): From Thereby Hangs A Tail
Lieutenant Stine went away. I polished off my steak tips, stretched out on those cool tiles, chilled out. What a life! The final chase through the warehouse ran pleasantly through my mind. And then again. After a while, I grew aware that the Hawaiian shirt guy had moved next to Bernie and struck up a conversation, at first about Hawaiian shirts, then about something else.
“What I run,” he was saying, “is what you might call a hedge fund for the little guy.”
“Little guy?” said Bernie.
“Not little in terms of intelligence or ability,” the Hawaiian shirt man added quickly. “But for one reason or another, men of distinction who don’t happen to be Wall Street insiders. I’ve had some nice play in commodities lately. You’re familiar with the basics of tin futures?”
Bernie motioned for another drink, overturning the salt and pepper. “Can’t be that complicated,” he said.
“Exactly,” replied the Hawaiian shirt man. And to the bartender when Bernie’s drink came: “I’ll get that.” Then came a lot of back and forth about tin, puts, calls, Bolivia and other mysteries. My eyelids got heavy, way too heavy to keep open. I let them close, drifted off. Harmless talk was all it was. As long as the check book didn’t come out of Bernie’s pocket we were in good shape.
Sometime later I awoke, feeling tip-top. I got up, gave myself a good shake, looked around. The bar was empty except for me, the bartender, the man in the Hawaiian shirt, and Bernie. The only completely sober one was me. Then came the bartender, the man in the Hawaiian shirt, and Bernie, dead last. Also, the check book was coming out.
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