Boca Daze excerpt (2)
“You would have made a good marine.” Herb Brown patted
“I was never in the service.”
“You were a street soldier.”
“The streets could be a war zone sometimes,” I agreed.
“They’re worse now with the illegal immigrants.”
“I don’t talk about religion or politics.”
“Me neither,” he said. “But I don’t like that black senator from
Illinois. How would you like having a liberal black man from
Kenya as president someday?”
“How do you feel about having a conservative white man
from Texas as president today?”
The old soldier smiled. “Good point.”
“Hey, Eddie,” a familiar voice called. Steve Coleman, a friend
from Boston, came up behind me and rubbed my shoulders like a
trainer rubs a fighter. “How’s my favorite superhero?”
“I’ll ask him when I see him,” I said. “Say hello to Herb
They shook hands.
Steve glanced at his watch and ordered a coffee to go.
“What’s the hurry?” I asked.
“Investment- club meeting in fifteen minutes.”
“Has your club ever made money?”
“Never,” he admitted. “But that’s changing to night.”
“Do you plan to rob a bank?”
“Better,” Steve said. “B.I.G. Investments has agreed to take
I stopped in mid sip. “You’re making money because someone
is taking your money?”
“Not just someone. B. I. Grover.”
“I never heard of him.”
“Everybody’s heard of him,” Steve insisted.
“I never heard of him either,” Herb Brown said.
“He’s been making more money than anyone in the investment business for thirty years. He never loses,” Steve bragged.
“Everyone loses,” Herb Brown said.
Steve smiled indulgently.
“What’s his rate of return?” Brown asked.
“Twelve to twenty percent.”
“That’s unbelievable,” Brown replied.
“Yes, it is,” Steve agreed.
“Then why do you believe it?” I asked. Steve patted my shoulder. “Grover is a genius, Eddie. His clients are big- time businessmen, charities, and celebrities. His fund has been closed for years.”
“Why is it suddenly open?” I asked.
“It’s not sudden. It took us two years to get in. We got lucky.
“Or unlucky,” Brown said. “How much did you invest?”
“Twenty guys at two hundred and two hundred and fifty grand. That’s his minimum.” Steve glanced at his watch again. “Gotta go, money never sleeps.”
Steve was barely out the door when Brown said, “And a fool and his money are soon parted.”
“You think he’s being foolish?” I asked.
“No one beats the competition all the time. Something isn’t kosher.”
“A lot of smart investors think he can.”
“Who says they’re smart?”
“Are you an investor?” I asked Herb.
“Yeah. I’ve had my money with a rock- solid company named Lehman Brothers for years.”
I nodded but the name meant nothing to me.
“Is Steve a good friend of yours?” Herb asked.
“He’s my best friend’s brother- in- law,” I said, referring to Togo Amato from the North End of Boston. Togo had been the best man at my wedding forty years ago and one of my wife’s pallbearers twenty years ago. “I’d say we’re pretty good friends.