One day, I went to visit the wealthiest, and therefore wisest, man. The man lived in a giant mansion that was built by the many many peasants.

I went to him, armed with nothing more than a question.

“Wisest man,” I said, “how is it that you can justify living in wealth and luxury in your giant mansion, while the many many peasants continue to starve?”

The wisest man answered my question with a question, as wise men who are also kind of assholes tend to do.

“Phil,” he said, guessing at my name incorrectly, “imagine the following:”

“A terrorist leader takes 100 innocent people hostage. You are summoned to negotiate with him.”

Advertisement

“The terrorist leader hits a button on his big-ass desk, and a sliding door slides upwards for some reason, revealing that he has also taken your best child captive. You didn’t even notice the door at first, that’s how awesome his lair is.”

“The terrorist leader then pulls out a gun. It’s a pretty fucking cool gun because it has 100 barrels. He puts one bullet in and spins whatever the fuck the spinny part of the gun is called.”

“He then tells you that he will free the innocent people and quit terrorism forever if you point the gun at your best child’s head and pull the trigger once.”

Advertisement

The wisest man, obviously feeling pretty badass at this point, said to me “what would you do, Paul?”

[We kind of accepted the fact that the wisest man was shitty with names.]

“Well, wisest man,” I said, “I’d spin that spinny thing right so that the bullet was in the right place to shoot, just like Criss Angel did in that one awesome Mindfreak that they couldn’t show on TV. Then I’d point the gun at the terrorist leader and blow his brains out, freeing everyone. Since everyone in the world would love me at that point, I’d take out some bank loans to actually buy a bullet company so I could get more bullets. Also I kept the cool gun.”

Advertisement

The wisest man thought about this answer, but I had already left and told everyone that it had really happened. I wasn’t able to buy a bullet company quite yet but enough people would buy me drinks after I told them the story that I saved up and bought a bunch of smaller guns and bullets and then used them to force the wisest man out of his house and take it for myself. Then I was able to get the good-ass loan so I bought a bullet company and a gun company.

Many years later, the wisest man tried to seek advice from me, but I hired some guards so he didn’t even make it to the door.