Oct 25

An explanation for the financial crisis with a recycled joke

Written by DJ on Saturday, October 25th, 2008 at 12:33 am
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A friend directed me to this joke today. I vaguely remember hearing something similar years ago, but this version is now much more interesting because of a new/amended moral of the story, which addresses the Chinese investors but is perhaps just as relevant globally.

The joke goes as follows (and is copied from a translation posted at U.K. forum)

One day, a plain-looking man came with a pretty-looking OL (Office Lady) to the Louis Vuitton store in Causeway Bay on Hong Kong Island. He chose an LV bag worth HKD 65,000 (£5000) for the OL.

When it came time to pay, the man took out a checkbook and wrote out a check. The salesperson was hesitant because the couple hadn’t shopped there before.

The man discerned what the salesperson was thinking and he said calmly: “I sense that you are concerned that this check may bounce, right? Today is Saturday and the banks are closed. Let me suggest that I leave the check and the handbag here. When the check clears on Monday, you can deliver the handbag to this lady. How about that?

The salesperson was reassured and gladly accepted the suggestion. In addition, he waived the delivery charges. He promised that he would personally make sure that this gets done.

On Monday, the salesperson took the check to the bank. The check bounced! The irate salesperson called up the client, who told him: “What is the big deal? Neither you nor I have suffered any loss. Last Saturday night, I went to bed with that girl already! Oh, by the way, I thank you for your cooperation.”

Moral of the story:

This story reveals the nature of the sub-prime mortgage crisis. When people have high hopes for huge future returns, they lower their guard about the potential risks. This pretty girl thought that the HKD 65,000 LV bag was going to come home on Monday, and so she lowered her guard. Therefore, she believed that her investment in the ‘one night stand’ was worth it even though it was based upon huge and highly uncertain risks. Investment companies are great with packaging high return (but high risk) deals. The Chinese stock speculators are like this pretty woman. As such, they deserve to lose money. Without people like these, how are people going to make money from the stock market? As for the media and the stock analysts, they often play the role of the LV salesperson.

This joke was also posted at a popular Chinese forum, where a follow up comment simply stated:

The story would fit the reality even better if that girl has AIDS and the sneaky man didn’t use protection.

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6 Responses to “An explanation for the financial crisis with a recycled joke”

  1. Netizen K Says:

    Why waste time on this useless joke. Its author obviously lives an unfulfilling life.

  2. chinayouren Says:

    Was this joke originally written in China or is it something that has been translated from other countries and now re-translated into English? We’ll probably never know.

    Anyway, it is funny, and it is also a good tip for those of us who are sometimes stuck in the tricky business of dating a Shanghai girl. So, funny: yes. useless: no. Thanks for sharing!

  3. Allen Says:

    I went to the Pravda store over the weekend … and tried to do the same trick … but they wouldn’t take my check! What did I do wrong??? 😉

  4. Steve Says:

    Allen, unfortunately the sales clerk had already heard this joke. Does that mean Saturday night didn’t turn out as planned??? 😉

  5. Allen Says:

    Steve, that’s not fair. You don’t kick a dog while the dog is down!!

  6. Nobody Says:

    An elderly friend (54 y.o) of a friend of mine has two girlfriends. One was just a sweet seventeen when they met and the other a nineteen year-old. They both live in the same building but on different floors. Yet after 2 years they still don’t know they are both sharing the same (old) man.
    My friend was the one who was interested in one of the girls. At the time, her father needed money for surgery, so she had asked for US$5,000 from my buddy for her virginity. Having heard similar stories a lot, he introduced her to his business partner, the older guy.
    The old fox, as my friend refers him as, upon meeting the girl immediately agreed to the deal for she is beautiful. And after the deed was done, he said to her, I will give you every penny you’ve asked and more, but in instalments. And this was how he tricked a 19 year old (but not too smart) shop assistent into becoming his girlfriend. As for his second girlfriend, the sweet seventeen factory worker, it was more straight forward. Her relative practically acted as her agent or match-maker.

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