My Grandmother said that JP Morgan (the bank) has a wonderful head.
I think she meant that they have a good director. But just imagine...
morgan's head, preserved for all eternity, raised on a high plinth and
guarded by twelve burly women. No one has ever seen these women sleep,
or move from their position, yet they breathe, they blink, they return
your queries with cold stares that send you scurrying backward in shame as though
you had broken wind in the presence of the Pope.
At the start of each quarter, the employees of the company, every one
of them, from every branch, all over the world, come to New York City
and gather in the great cathedral space wherein sits the greenish head
of JP Morgan. The plinth is bathed in sunlight, the kind of summer light
that bleaches all color and slows time to a crawl.
All are gathered in a great circle around this pillar of eldritch light,
bowing low, the teller clerks bowing lowest, the board of directors
folding their hands and nodding their heads in reverence. To the sound
of a Taiko drum, which rattles the bones of the gathered faithful, the
President walks down the center aisle, holding aloft a quarterly report
framed in mahogany and gold. "We offer ourselves to you, oh great one,
oh founder of our fortunes, oh mighty wise investor, oh predictor of the
capricious whims of stock markets. We offer this record of our
quarterly profits. We beseech thee, oh shrewd, oh thou canny, oh thou
patient, oh thou opportunistic, we beg your guidance for the coming
The light grows brighter. Whiter. Only those of true faith can stand to
gaze upon the light; the unworthy avert their gaze. The elders of the
board of directors squint, tears well up in their eyes, but they do not
Suddenly Morgan's green eyes gleam straight through the blinding
light, and a rumbling, wheezing, buzzing voice echoes throughout the
The light fades. The President bows, turns, and exits. The employees
rise, and mumble to themselves that this act is an expensive bit of
theatric trickery, well done, oh yes, oh well done. The faithful shush them
and warn them that there will be no golden parachute for them in
paradise if they continue to say such things.
(Though many are unfaithful, not a one of them ever, ever mentions
Morgan's huge nose. Even the impious have the utmost respect for the
Some devoted few remain, staring at the plinth for the remainder of the
day. The expressions of the guards do not change, yet the eyes they fix
upon these few are soft, even kind. It is the only kindness anyone has
ever seen these guards express.
Expensive as it is to gather the company each quarter, JP Morgan has,
under the guidance of their fabulous head, survived storms that have
felled lesser, weaker, more foolish banks.
And to this day, all employees of JP Morgan say "Morgan guide us" when
venturing upon an uncertain task.