ACT 1 SCENE 1
Curtain opens to an office setting, a man [JEFF BRIDICH] sits at a desk with a phone, a lamp, and several piles of paper on it. Another man [MAN] opens the door and sits down across from JEFF.
MAN: Hello, I had an appointment for today.
JEFF: Welcome! I am the stocks expert. Or so they say.
MAN: I don’t know who “they” are, but anyhow, I’m looking for some advice to jump start my 401(k). I’m thinking of retiring sooner and need some more funds before I do.
JEFF: Great! You’ve come to the right place, I hear, as I’m an expert. Let’s see here [JEFF begins to tap on his keyboard] we have a bunch of options to upgrade your portfolio! How about this one? [JEFF turns the computer around towards the man at the front of the desk]
MAN: That one doesn’t look good at all.
JEFF: What? What do you mean? This one is great! Look: two points the last two years! They tell me that’s good and will only get better.
MAN: I don’t know.
JEFF: Look, I’m going to hit you with a little strategy here. The big thing in the stocks world the other guys in the stocks world will always tell you is that you should cut your losses on a bad stock. But I have a different idea, and it’s pretty radical.
JEFF: You don’t sell, you let that stock tank. [JEFF makes a downward motion with his hand] and when that stock tanks [he hits his hand on the table] there is nowhere to go but up.
MAN: But I’ll have lost a bunch of money.
JEFF: Yeah but then you’ll make money cause it will go up. You haven’t heard?
MAN: No, and I don’t think that’s how that works.
JEFF: Oh, are you the stocks expert? Do you have this desk? This office? This chair? These books? That stone lion over there on my other desk? My other desk? Do you have any of those things?
MAN: I do not.
JEFF: So look, you buy this stock now. It totally hits the floor, but you’re still a genius. You know how?
JEFF: Because they’ll say you saw the rebound coming and held on because of your genius faith.
MAN: I have to be honest...
MAN: ...this sounds like a bad idea and a little self-serving? Like, I’ll be broke.
JEFF: Absolutely. Poor as a dog.
MAN: And the rebound, if it happens at all, would only help minimally, and I still lost most of my money.
MAN: So it would really just help what? My misguided ego?
JEFF: [Stands up] Buddy, in this dog eat dog world, sometimes a misguided ego is the only currency we have.
MAN: What about money?
JEFF: [Shoves papers to the ground] YOU CARE ABOUT MONEY?
JEFF: Did money buy this hair? This suit? These shoes? That car? My house? My other house? My kitchen counter? My brakes? My son’s bus pass? These socks? My fish? My other fish that died? My fish food? My fish vet?
JEFF: Of course it did! But money is all about never admitting mistakes.
MAN: Is it?
JEFF: You came to me, sir.
MAN: I was told you’re an expert.
[At this moment a MEDIA PERSON with the word PRESS on a fedora enters the room]
MEDIA PERSON: It is impossible for your decisions to fail!
[MEDIA PERSON leaves the office]
MAN: That didn’t sound entirely honest.
JEFF: You should probably believe it anyway.
MAN: I think I might go now.
GRAINY INTERCOM VOICE: Mr. Bridich you have another appointment do you want me to send them in?
JEFF: Yes please send them in.
[Seconds later a MEDIA MAN wearing dress khakis, an untucked Eddie Bauer shirt, and an old hat steps in]
MEDIA MAN: Jeff! I just wanted to say last week’s meeting went great and I’m glad we could get your motto out to the people.
JEFF: Me too, I’m glad everyone knows my company’s motto now.
JEFF AND MEDIA MAN TOGETHER: You just know the stock will eventually not tank.
MEDIA MAN: Brilliant stuff. By the way thanks for the stocks advice. I’ve never been broker and you’ve never been righter!
JEFF: Eventually it’ll go up again!
MEDIA MAN: You just know it! Everything will be fine.
[JEFF and MEDIA MAN turn to the audience and smile]