Dear childless widow with terminal brain cancer. I have already inherited more than $100M this year from a host of benevelent benefactors with all sorts of terminal illnesses and no immediate heirs, and have no idea what I would do with the additional $3.6M you want to leave to little ole me. Suggest you take it with you.

Right Place! Wrong Time?

Downtown Newark, NJI been in the right place, but it must have been the wrong time; or so goes the song by Dr. John. Maybe I was too, but who can really say? All I know is I walk into a drug store in downtown Newark a couple of weeks ago, looking for an old friend who, I’m told, was employed there. I’m a little anxious and uneasy because I haven’t seen this guy in almost twenty years. And even though I’m looking forward to the meeting, I am mindful that it’s not a social call. I’ve got some real bad news to deliver. Sounds easy enough, right? Wrong!

The place is bustling with the typical five o’clock crowd, and the fact that I grew up in this city doesn’t stop me from feeling like the bastard step-child at a family reunion. Nevertheless, it’s a welcome escape from the stampeding suburbanites fleeing the city on the other side of the door. I eye the cashier, a weathered and withered old guy tending to a long line of customers, mostly women on cell phones. I walk past them hoping to spot someone who looks like they might be in charge, wondering how anyone could work here without losing their God forsaken mind and suddenly…


The sound is followed by a chorus of packages hitting the floor – bags, boxes, plastic containers – and a symphony of coins whirling around in countless spirals. The screaming started right after that.

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