Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Wanted Dead (Not Alive) - Chapter 1 of a tale of fiction with an uncertain future

It had been a disastrous year for him.His marriage of over 20 years had crumbled due to his abuse of drugs and his wife, not necessarily in that order. He had lost half of his net worth in that battle. With the costs of alimony and child support, the landscape was changing dramatically.

The stock market had swallowed up large portions of his remaining assets. He had some of his portfolio with one of the feeder funds to Madoff, and that had disappeared.

He had been left with his interest in the record company he had founded. It's value had not crippled him in the divorce, as the industry in general was staggering, and his company was hemorrhaging money. Bad choices in artists, bad management and bad luck had left him barely holding on. He was one step away from nowhere.

In looking back, it was easy to see why he had chosen this path. But, to the world it was to be a shock.

It all began innocently enough, as these things often do. He had been reading the newspaper when 2 stories collided in his mind. The first was a true tale involving a cop turned TV personality. He had developed a popular show tracking down criminals. He had made a habit of being the first on the scene to investigate. The police wondered for years how he was always able to get a jump on them. It turned out that he had been hiring killers to commit these murders, so he knew the how and when. He had become a murderer for increased TV ratings.

The other story involved a rival label. They reported that shortly after the death of Michael Jackson, there had been increased revenues of over $100,000,000. Michael's death brought renewed life to the company.

Michael and Elvis had, truth be known, seen better days way before their deaths. Michael was attempting a comeback tour at the time of his accidental overdose. Elvis, battling weight and a music industry that had in large part moved onto to another sound and another generation, was hoping to resurrect his career when he too was felled by a lethal dose of drugs. Many years after his death, the Elvis industry still produces much more revenue than it would have had the King survived.

He knew both of these performers had been icons, and he could not envision any of the old timers in his stable being able to create that kind of profit for him if any one of them died. There were certainly 3 or 4 who had been among the pantheon of stars in the 1970's and 1980's. They were still around, still on his on his label, but they hadn't generated a hit in years. Yet, for the baby boomers, and maybe for their children, there would be renewed fervor after death.

He also had several current stars who had seemed to be on the edge of greatness. One more hit, one more CD, one more dalliance with a movie star, or made up celebrity, and maybe. But not yet.

There was one performer however that was of particular interest.

He dismissed these thoughts from his mind. Times were tough, but they were tough for everyone.He would be able to find a way out without resorting to this madness.

But, as the days of summer turned into fall, the reality of the depths of his financial woes descended upon him. The company was on the verge of collapse. The endless pool of money into which he dipped with abandon through the years was now but a memory. His car payments, mortgage payments, alimony payments, college payments and the constant nagging of his ex-spouse created a crescendo of noise that he couldn't turn off. There was no escaping the reality that presented itself before him.

His mind returned to thoughts of murder.


PickleBiz said...

Change "Record Company" to "Pickle Company" and there are haunting similarities to past events! BTW, TT continued the merciless ass-kicking after you left.

Robert said...

All similarities to real persons are pure coincidence, or maybe not.