Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Dalpner Suffington's Sudden Demise

In eighteen ninety-four, a riverboat gambler and amateur chemist by the name of Dalpner Suffington invented the concept of multi-level marketing. The story of his subsequent rise and fall is short and brutally savage. (Brutally savage, because it ends with him being stabbed to death by a furious farmer and thrown into a ravine where his body is devoured by gophers.)

It all started one beautiful June morning in 1894. Dalpner Suffington was trying to concoct a hangover remedy and happened to stumble upon a liquid formula that repelled voles but attracted gophers. Just a few drops of this strange solution was enough to drive away every vole, and simultaneously attract every gopher, for miles around--even the albino gophers that nobody ever sees. (Which scared the hell out of the local Indians for reasons that to this day aren't fully understood--something to do with an ancient legend and prophesy.)

For months Dalpner tried unsuccessfully to make money with his serendipitous discovery, but for some reason no one was the slightest bit interested in paying even a cent for a formula that almost one for one replaced voles with gophers.

Depressed, Dalpner dumped most of his formula into a cornfield. When the farmer and his sons ran out to figure out why their crop was violently twitching, Dalpner snuck inside and had carnal relations with the farmer's wife. The farmer returned, caught them in the act, stabbed Dalpner to death and threw his body into a ravine; where it was devoured by gophers.

And so fell the curtain on Dalpner Suffington--truly a man ahead of his time. It would be years and years before door-to-door Amway salesmen realized they could usually take sexual advantage of the capitalistic flush and intoxicating surge of financial independence their afternoon visits tended to elicit from lonely farmer's wives.

And Dalpner Suffington has never received his due credit--until now.

I am Latigo Flint--good night.


At 2:52 AM, Blogger Lightning Bug's Butt said...

Man, with knowledge like that, those Baristas are sitting ducks.

At 4:21 AM, Blogger Peter said...

Harsh treatment indeed for poor old Dalpner, 'n him an inventive genius 'n all.

At 8:29 AM, Blogger Monkeypotpie said...

I attended the Dalpner Suffington School of Adultery and Casino in Biloxi, Mississippi. There I learned the arts of gambling and seducing farmer's wives.

I'm still picking buckshot out of my ass and hitting on 16. Guess I'm not a good student.

At 8:21 PM, Anonymous Westacular said...

I suppose his great business mistake was to not combine his formula with The World's Biggest Gopher Trap. He had the perfect bait -- AND as an added bonus it gets rid of all the voles, too.

At 11:35 AM, Blogger Trevor Record said...

I'm afraid this is simply a case of a product being created before its time, then being largely forgotten when the time came that it could be capitalised on. While a man 100 years ago would have no use for a gopher lure, today there is a booming exotic pet industy that would pay an arm and a leg for such a solution. By current methods of lure and capture, there is no way that the supply of gophers can possibly meet the demand that rich socialites in costal cities exert.

At 5:13 PM, Blogger OldHorsetailSnake said...

Yes, I can see how this all makes sense. But I bet I am the ONLY one who can see it.

At 12:26 AM, Blogger MJ said...

And THAT, folks, explains the full story behind the verb "to suffington" someone.

At 10:07 AM, Blogger Amandarama said...

That rat bastard Suffington died owing my great, great grandmother's next door neighbor's cousin's friend child support. Or so I've been told.

At 6:32 PM, Blogger Cindy-Lou said...

Financial independence gets me hot.

At 12:15 AM, Blogger greta said...

I've found that when applied strategically to the wrists, decolletage and behind the knees, Amway's Crystal Clear is effective in repelling possums and attracting small, high-waisted-slacks-wearing corporate trainers called Neville. But maybe that's just me.

At 3:27 PM, Blogger Ari said...

I retold this post to someone else, guffawing as I did. They didn't guffaw quite as much but that's probably because funny stuff loses something during my telling sometimes.

I still think there's something beautifully existential here, but I'm damned if I can say whether it has to do with the gophers or the voles.

Also, I hope retelling's not a copyright violation. Is it?

At 6:00 PM, Blogger Latigo Flint said...

You'd think so wouldn't you LBB? If only Latigo Flint had more than a few bits to rub together.

But if history has taught us anything Peter, it's that inventive geniuses are often the most likely to be stabbed to death and eaten by gophers.

You can't measure heart Monkeypotpie--swab your bleeding cheeks with some peroxide and get right back out there, you hear?

That's probably true Westacular. Business can sometimes be the cruelest mistress of all.

I know Trev--it's all so tragic, ain't it? History is rife with brutal ironies.

(Actually Old Hoss, just between us, would you mind explaining it to me?)

Your verve and wit suffingtons me MJ.

But no one could ever be mean enough to sue the descendants of a man with gopher teeth marks on his skull, right Amandarama?

Hey Cindy-Lou--did I ever tell you about the time I invented the scrub activated musical loofa?

Probably a little of both Greta, probably a little of both. The depth of the decolletage swoop could have something to do with it too.

That depends Ari... Did you charge for the performance?


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