Can’t figure that much money

“I just heard at Glover’s Bar that them guys in Bismarck are finally thinking of using that $10,000,000,000 pile of fracking and gas money molding away in the state treasury,” Madeleine Morgan said with authority as she entered the ZCBJ hall for a special meeting of the Homeland Security Committee.

“Well, it’s about time they started sharing this money with those of us who are still living today – especially the kids, of which we no longer have any,” said Orville Jordan, the retired depot agent who retired with the Soo Line Railroad.

“I hope they are thinking about sharing the money with all of us living people who have a stake in this windfall,” offered Dorsey Crank.

“Maybe we can bring back the blacksmith shop,” agreed Holger Danske. “My horses haven’t had new shoes since Gory Berkrit went to Wahpeton to learn about working on vehicles…he thought it was time to go with the flow.”

Little Jimmy, the only town resident not on Social Security and the proud owner of the only computer in the city limits, spoke up from the back of the room.

“I’ve been trying to figure out how to divide the money so everybody can share the benefits but my computer can’t handle $10,000,000,000.”

“I’ll bet that’s been the problem when those people decide at the Capitol,” added Einar Torvald.

“It’s so much money they don’t know how to divide it.”

Speaking from his fur-lined hoody, Einar Stampsted said that he had spent the last month trying to figure how to break that $10,000,000,000 but the numbers are just so far out of his league that he couldn’t do it.

“There is no doubt that this has been the big hold-up on spending it,” agreed Dorff. “They have been economically constipated.”

Orine Erfald shuddered at the use of such raw language in a mixed group.

“For starters, Einar, what kind of figures do you have?” asked Orville who came with six pages of figures stuffed in his back pocket.

“I’ll bet Einar thinks the abacus is still the best calculating machine ever invented,” snickered Orville.

“Well, I’m not too sure what makes sense but dividing $10,000,000,000 by our population of 750,000 I come up with $1,330 for each North Dakota person so far born,” Einer reported.

“Let’s save some for the unborn,” Orine inserted.

“Holy smoke!” exclaimed Orville. “I come up with around $1,333,333 each.”

“Look!” Dorff barked. “We have so many needs I don’t care which it is…let’s go for it. I could use my share right today.”

“I’m not for giving this money out to individuals,” Madeleine, the refugee from Montana asserted. “I’ve been deputy sheriff of Lincoln County and I know most people are just going to get drunk or some other silly whim.”

“I’m for reopening the blacksmith shop – my horses haven’t had a change in shoes since Blitzy Bulger left for Wahpeton to learn about automobiles,” Holger argued.

“For one thing, the town could use a culvert under Madison Boulevard to keep the water out of town every spring,” pleaded Old Sievert who lived on the wrong side of the water.

“Wait a minute! Wait a minute!” exclaimed Chairperson Dorken. “Nobody can spend money until we figure out how to break this monstrous windfall.”

Rising as he spoke, Orville smiled like Tammy when she had three mice for breakfast.

“Since everybody is scared to death by this big sum, let’s just take it one piece at a time – say $10,000,000 – even the Legislature can handle that – and figure out how to spend that. We can keep doing that until it’s used up.

“What a breakthrough!” Ork announced. “We’ve solved the problem so this meeting is adjourned.”

Everyone cheered.


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