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WEST VIRGINIA, I HAVE A DEAL YOU HAVE TO TAKE

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Let's not let something as base as money settle this, friends.

Dear West Virginia administrators and other flintlock-bearing Appalachian hoi-polloi,

I write this letter today in order to offer a resolution to the $4 million dollar lawsuit filed by your university against me. Most of the time I leave this to the lawyers, but an offer like the one I'm going to put out here right now requires a personal touch.

You and I both face huge legal bills due to this unfortunate misunderstanding regarding my departure from West Virginia, a place I love both as my home and as the place where we accomplished great things together as a football team.

With that, I propose an end to the acrimony not by nitpicking over money, but instead by talking about settling the dispute the old-fashioned way. Money's a shortcut for real value, and what I propose worked for centuries in its place.

I'm talking about the noble and ancient exchange otherwise known as barter.

You wouldn't believe how effective the practice can be! The other day, I paid my plumber not in cash, but instead with thirty signed Michigan sweatshirts. He walked away happy, and I didn't have a guest bathroom soiled with the remnants of the prior tenants corn-heavy diet all over the place. It's almost a metaphor for what we have here, really: shit everywhere, and you and I sitting here with the tools to make it right in our hands. How poetic!

I don't propose paying you in sweatshirts--though this could be a lovely bonus prize for you to trade up to something like a bass boat, mobile meth lab, Hannah Montana tickets, or something else of equivalent value. The important thing with barter: I'm not reigning in your possibilities. With $4 million, you'll only be able to get $4 million dollars worth of goods and services.

But with barter, the possibilities are endless. I traded a VHS copy of Beethoven for a pound of thumbtacks. And what do you know, but four weeks later I'm the proud owner of a new rototiller. The boundaries are limitless! I'm prepared to offer the following items in exchange for the inflexible $4 million dollars contested in the lawsuit.

One: An old ab-roller. I couldn't use the thing without face-planting right into the carpet every time. At no extra charge, I will throw in a bag of old cedar shavings. Their fragrance has a value you can't possibly measure in money.

Include another pic of someone giving the thumbs up. It'll help sell it! Take this out before the final draft! God, that's a lot of money!

Two: The collected works of Suze Orman. Really, with her help you'll be accruing wealth in no time! She's got lesbian money powers you can't possibly understand until you experience them.

Three: A Sega Dreamcast. At no extra cost to you, I will also throw in an old copy of Shenmue, perhaps the most revolutionary video game of its time. I'm not really a video game player, but I got this in a trade two weeks ago for a glue gun, three pounds of frozen beef, and a large but promising piece of particle board. I cut and paste that description from a Google search, but judging from its enthusiasm, you're probably already just three or four steps from turning that INTO YOUR VERY OWN HOUSEBOAT WITH WATER SLIDE!!!!

Please consider this offer carefully. Keep in mind, there's no limit to what you can do with barter, the past economy of the future. If you have any questions, you can reach me via ham radio.

Operator-interns are standing by.