* Welcome to The Big Jewel, where we usually have more important things on our mind than mere money. Not today, though, thanks to Todd Dorman.

Our $pinning Globe

By: Todd Dorman

They say money makes the world go round.

But does it really? I don’t remember much from my school days, but I do remember an old science teacher of mine, Mr. Owens, saying something about gravity and mass. Then again, Mr. Owens always wore the same tie, smelled like fish, and wept in the boys’ room about his mortgage payments. So maybe all that talk about gravity and mass was just wishful thinking on his part.

I wonder about the time of the dinosaurs, before money was invented. Did the world not go around then? Dinosaurs had their own kind of money, I guess — the money of “You better run or I will eat you.” That kind of money could have made the world spin a hell of a lot quicker than our paper kind — especially if a lot of dinosaurs were running in the same direction.

That leads me to the big question of how money connects itself to the earth, gets the traction to spin it, and then lets go fast enough to not get spun around itself, in a huge cyclone of money. Or am I missing the piece where money gives itself to some secret company with a giant Spinner Machine?

Money does seem to like to hide things. Like itself, from me. Sometimes I think the best way to find out how money makes the world go around would be to just get all the money together and ask it. But whenever I put money in the same place it seems to be replaced, eventually, by empty gin bottles, shot-up drone kits, and ‘cease and desist’ notices from the fine folks at sexygungirls.com.

As a result, science suffers.

Maybe what they mean is that money makes the world go around in a more spiritual sense. You could get that idea from a lot of places, like church. When you go to church, they tell you about God, and then they ask you for money. But why? Does God need money to spin the world around, like a service charge? If I were running things down at the church, I would just say, “Forget it, God, we’ll keep the money for ourselves — let the world stop spinning.” What’s the worst that could happen?

I told my minister that idea, expecting she would be happy about all the money she could save the church. But she just looked at me in that certain way she has that’s so money in itself somehow, and said maybe I should worry less about what makes the world go around and more about what kind of job I’d like to get.

I said her job, and she said I could have it, but it turns out she wasn’t serious about that.

After a while it occurred to me that maybe the answers were on the money itself. The next time I got my hands on a dollar bill, I examined it closely. George Washington had nothing to tell me, though he did look a little smug. On the back were the bald eagle and the pyramid. The eagle held a tree branch in one talon, and that made me think: maybe eagles grab the trees and flap their wings so hard that the world turns? But I haven’t seen that happening much. Anyway the eagle had a bunch of arrows in his other talon, so does he somehow fling those the other way in a wild display of centrifugal force? No, he does not. What do crazy flapping eagles have to do with making the world go round? The eagle is a red herring.

Then there was the pyramid with the eye. It’s very mysterious. But the more I studied it, the more it seemed to be saying, Egyptians knew all about this and you don’t, you stupid idiot. Which is why you only have one dollar.

Finally, I thought maybe I should take the minister’s advice and look to myself. Maybe the world is like me, I thought. What makes me spin around? And that brought me back to my empty gin bottles and my poor shot up drones, and the poor slighted folks at sexygungirls.com who try to give a free public service to every poor American who likes to see babes in their underwear shooting at stuff, and to the poor SGG lawyers who want their clients to be able to put out their wares just so, instead of having secondary angles taken from far above with high-powered lenses that sometimes fall out of the drones — and most of all to the poor startled babes who already have enough trouble in life without telephoto lenses falling on their heads while they’re shooting.

Maybe they’re wrong about money making the world go around. Maybe it’s not money — it’s liquor, bullets, and artistic integrity. I remembered that one time I poured all my gin out in the yard and vowed to change my ways and gave my drones to the neighborhood kids to have some fun with. And I thought, “Well, maybe I’ve done my part.”

In the end, I don’t really know if money makes the world go around.

I do know that I want some more money.

* Welcome to The Big Jewel, your ultimate summer recreation spot. Your guide this week is Todd Dorman, and this is his first piece for us. Treat him as you would any camp counselor: put frogs in his bed and glue in his hair.

Welcome To Unemployed Executive Daddy “Summer” Camp For Kids

By: Todd Dorman

Welcome to Unemployed Executive Daddy “Summer” Camp for Kids, the only camp we know of run by unemployed executive dads for children of any age, race, or gender who have money. Boy are we glad you’re all here! We know it’s cold, but October was the month closest to summer that we could afford. Please be sure to leave your certified check, credit card, or wad of cash with Leo Foster, former head of accounting at a former accounting firm you’ve all heard of, ha ha ha, in the payment area down by the lake. (Please note that credit cards will not be returned.)

We have a great week ahead, full of impactful, synergistic and planful activities. (Parents, please note that all impactful activities require a helmet. Helmets are available for purchase from Mr. Foster down by the lake.)

Each morning at Unemployed Executive Daddy begins with the Internet Search Game, where you get to take out the laptops you bought or will soon buy from Mr. Foster, log on to our pay-by-the-minute WiFi, and surf the web for specific phrases and pay brackets your counselors will provide to you in the form of their resumes. The more opportunities you locate and optimize, the less good-natured yelling there will be. If you can’t read yet, it’s OK, some of us counselors don’t read too good either!

(Parents, please remember that we prefer kids at Unemployed Executive Daddy to show promise in any two of the following three areas: creative math, storytelling or LexisNexis. Financial penalties may apply for children who do not: please see Mr. Foster with any questions. If your child does not excel in one of these areas but likes to order around people who do, Mr. Foster will collect your canoe toll and send you and your child right across the lake to Jeff Lang from HR, who will enroll your child in the special Fast Track section and equip him/her with a personal staff and a camp Town Car.)

As for the rest of you, please bear in mind that the Internet Search Game usually takes longer than you think it will, so it’s likely we’ll have to skip swimming and boating most days. We do have insurance for loss of life, but only for our counselors. The faster you complete your resume stacks, the more likely you’ll get into the lake, but don’t count on it. Besides, the lake is usually iced over in the morning.

Lunch will be served alfresco on the grass, after a quick hunting and gathering lesson taught by Terry Noosebaum, former Senior Vice President of Advancement at a large university that had some public image issues a while back. Our regular chef got another job — we’re happy for him! Really! — so anything you hunt and kill this week won’t be cooked unless you somehow find a way to cook it. Maybe stick to fish that can be cut up and served as sushi, or better yet just stick to gathering. Again, please try to avoid walking on the lake, even if the ice seems thick. It’s not.

Late afternoons (gathering, too, always takes longer than you think) are generally reserved for reflection/self-medication/reading the self-help books counselors have hurled out of their cabins — though many of the counselors may retire to the Weeping Tent for Cocktail Hour (Cocktail Hour starts at 1pm and lasts until well past dinnertime). Please do not enter or come near the Weeping Tent, because we really can’t afford any more lawsuits.

Speaking of naptime, I see that some of you brought your own sleeping bags. That’s great, but because of the bedbug epidemic up here, and other epidemics, we require that all sleeping bags be purchased from Mr. Foster down by the lake. If you brought a sleeping bag, please give it to him. He will return it to you, sterilized, at the end of the week, and provide your parents with a bill for the cleaning. Of course, you’ll have to rent another sleeping bag while you’re here. Remember that many sleeping bags look alike, so if Mr. Foster takes your sleeping bag, goes into his shed, and comes back out with another sleeping bag that looks just like yours, it’s a coincidence.

Dinner is whatever you have left over from lunch, and you can eat it whenever you want. There is usually potable water in the pool. (Nobody up here eats breakfast, but you’ll find out all about that in the morning.)

Evenings in the Main Lodge are reserved for the development of your PowerPoint skills. We hope you completed the creative interview prep assignments included with your camp acceptance letter. If you failed to do so, please understand that your counselors may express disappointment/rage when you tell them this, given that Cocktail Hour does often drift into Lodge Time.

Please turn in by 9:00, as we can’t be held accountable for anything that happens to anyone, including ourselves, after that time. Please note that the howling sounds you hear in the woods do not emit from werewolves or zombies or alien monsters, but from Dads who are just like your Dad will be once he loses his job. If you did not bring earplugs, you can purchase them from Mr. Foster. Be advised that Mr. Foster always sells out of earplugs by the second morning of camp.

Finally, if you have any questions about anything, please don’t hesitate to see good old Mr. Foster down by the lake. Or me. And please note that answers to all questions cost $100 cash — no exceptions.

Have a great week!