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Monday, April 27, 2009

We've moved! Welcome to PP blog 2.0!

Surprise! Thanks to our pals at Blue Ion, we're movin' on up in the blog world. You may now find our latest news, musings, Tweets and other sundry hilarity at http://blog.patpropllc.com/. See you there and thanks always for your support!

Thursday, April 23, 2009

What Gin & Patrick Properties Have In Common

More gin talk. Well, actually it's more about marketing, branding and positioning, but I'm using Hendrick's Gin as the example. But first, a bit o' history.

When I first came to Patrick Properties, I was walking through The William Aiken House one day with Randall. He was regaling me with his encyclopedic knowledge about the House's history. As we walked across the gorgeous wood floors, they made the indescribable noise that is unmistakable, true character. Now, I love that noise. That noise has many wonderfully rich emotional attachments to it. To me, it's an immediate sense that there's a story here. Dozens upon dozens more than likely. And you know at least some of them have to be REALLY GOOD stories. But I digress.

Suffices to say that I spent some time thinking about that. Later, Randall told me that a prospective bride that toured the House and asked if "something could be done about the floors." She no likey the creaking. Which, in my view, pretty much means, she doesn't like Patrick Properties. Because if you're not down with a good story and character, you're probably not going to understand what we're all about.

And that's fine. Really. We understand and take no offense.

Which brings me back to gin. Specifically Hendrick's. And here's the brilliance.

On the small tag that hangs around the best bottle ever, the Hendrick's people say their gin is: PREFERRED BY 1 OUT OF 1,000 GIN DRINKERS.

That's correct. In other words, not a whole lot of folks are drinking Hendrick's. (Andra and I do what we can, but people, we are only human.)

And rather than hang their heads or wring their little ginny hands, the Hendrick's folks have taken their "tiny handful of people all over the world" and made them feel unique and wonderful and like they're in on something that not everyone else "gets." Their tag line says it all: Hendrick's: It is not for everyone.

Hello, brand loyalty, I am your slave for life.

As it turns out, creaky wood floors and gin have an awful lot in common.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Earth Day & award-winning goat cheese

It's Earth Day, Internet! Oh, AND it's Administrative Professionals Day. Very busy, VERY busy.

In celebration of Earth Day, check out some insightful commentary on sustainability and some MAJOR controversy surrounding my girl Alice Waters and Ruth Reichl.

Nico just buzzed over here to PP HQ to let me know that one of our local producers, Split Creek Farm, won a bronze medal in the U.S. cheese competition. That's right, you can now eat award-winning artisnal goat cheese when you dine at Fish! Congratulations to the Split Creek Farm family. FYI: Split Creek produces not just goat cheese, but also milk, yogurt and fudge.

I unwittingly celebrated Earth Day a tad early last night when I received the gift of a tomato plant from our very own Fish Manager/Mixologist/Renaissance Man Evan Powell. (Do watch his video from yesterday.) It's always fun to receive a gift from a friend, but I have to say, it's extra meaningful for someone to give you something that is alive and needs care and grows something you can eat and share. Tomato plants for everyone!

I'll leave you today with a quote from writer, thinker, grower Wendell Berry:
"Better than any argument is to rise at dawn and pick dew-wet red berries in a cup."

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Did someone say happy hour?

If you haven't met Fish Restaurant Manager/Mixologist/Fisherman/Renaissance Man Evan Powell, you are missing one of my favorite people. When it comes to wine and all things mixology, Evan is eager, passionate and tireless in his quest for more and more knowledge. He always has a fantastic wine recommendation, and whipped up a new spring cocktail today that I just had to document. It's called the nectarita: tequila, elderflower nectar, fresh lime juice and lemongrass dry soda. A little sweet, a little sour. Quite sincerely, the perfect beverage to be sipped on Fish's outdoor patio. Happy Hour begins at 5:30. See you soon.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Sunset, big moves & local potluck

Thanks to Lowndes Grove General Manager Ashley Gunnin who snapped this gorgeousness on Friday night. Sigh. Happiness along the river.

Our friends over at Blue Ion are in the process of a transitional move before they make their BIG move to a new space they're creating at 301 King Street (otherwise known as "the space above the Apple store...ooooo!")

When I first started working with the B.I. crew, their office was above Lucky Jeans on King/Wentworth. Peruse their past offices if you're so inclined. One of the niftiest things about that space was a functioning, open kitchen/bar area. It's where we always ended up talking. (We were working, I SWEAR.) Which makes sense since people always congregate in the kitchen at parties.

Anywho, what makes B.I.'s new office exercise more interesting is the thought they've put into it. It's not just about finding or creating a "cool" space on the peninsula. It's about creating an environment that is sustainable and sustaining. Does it facilitate creativity? Is it comfortable? Nurturing? If you're thinking of finding new office digs, do some serious thinking. The truth is, if you're going to spending 8 to 12 hours a day somewhere, you want that space to help you be as comfortable and productive as possible.

On the local food front, Lowcountry Local First is gearing up for its 2nd Annual Chef's Potluck at Middleton Place on Sunday, May 3 from 4 until 7 pm. If you've never been, you really need to check it out. I think this is one of the most fun, most laid back foodie events in Charleston, and everything on the menu features locally-sourced products. Fish, Hall’s Chophouse, Anson, The Glass Onion and a host of others will be on-hand to showcase the best from our local farms and fishermen. Nico's making a beef nam sod spring roll with potato puree AND a strawberry, arugula, fennel salad with a sweet soy vinaigrette. Um, YUM.

Live music will provided by Fish’s favorite Thursday evening chanteuse, Elise Testone. Local beer, wine and coffees too! Tickets are $40 for Lowcountry Local First members and $45 for non-members. You.must.be.there!

Friday, April 17, 2009

Design walk, haiku & PROM STORIES!

Last night's Upper King Design Walk was a smashing success and thanks to everyone who came out to support one of the city's best neighborhoods. The weather was lovely; the sidewalks were teeming with people and hey, the Mayor did the ribbon cutting at SieMatic! Good stuff. Check out the City Paper's Flickr pics and video of the Mayor's speech.

Check out this moo shu haiku submission. Not only is it thorough, but it rhymes! And yes, still accepting submissions via comments or email: jenny@patpropllc.com.

Soup, salad, moo-shu,
Fish, shrimp, beef, chicken, tofu
Ten dollar lunch: woo hoo

Okay, now for the crux of this post. It's Spring here in Charleston and that means it's prom season! In fact, as I type this post, the young ladies of Ashley Hall are decking out The American Theater for their Havana Night prom. We have sneaked a few peeks and the space is looking marvelous. Potted palms, large, fake butterflies and vintage Visit Cuba posters as far as the eye can see! I have to say, it got all of us at PP headquarters harking back to our own prom memories.

So, me being me, I sent out an email to the company asking folks to share their prom theme and/or song and the color of their dress, tux or suit. Here, then, are some highlights.

(Please note: it's no typo. There were, in fact, two occurrences of Boyz II Men. Names have been omitted to protect the innocent and not-so-innocent.)

After deep thought, I think my theme was “End of the Road” in reference to the hot band at the time… Boyz II Men. This is embarrassing.

My dress was yellow and super big like Cinderella’s. It was the year that the style was to wear a tight fitting dress, and I was the anarchist.

“Lady In Red” is coming to mind as a prominent song. “Always” by Atlantic Starr also big. The swoon song, if you will. Hard to remember since it was so long ago and I barely have memory left at this point… I wore a lovely baby blue number with lace up to my chin. Sleeveless but had a nice big ruffle that went across the front and covered my shoulders. You’ve seen Mystic Pizza, yes? My date wore a white tux with a matching blue cummerbund.

Mine was "It's So Hard To Say Goodbye" by Boyz II Men!

I guess I have always loved me some baby blue—from Prom to Wedding.

Senior prom : dress was strapless and rose colored. Junior year: turquoise. Freshman year was a hideous dress with a rainbow bodice and blue-ish bottom.

I wore a borrowed, black strapless number. Song was “Wonderful Tonight” by Eric Clapton. My date asked me while I was in the hospital recovering from appendicitis. He broke a pact with his friends to ask me. (They were planning to boycott and go golfing.)

As I was walking downstairs to greet my date at my house, a mother came running up behind me realizing I was exposing my behind…due to my zipper being completely broken at the bottom of my dress near my rear! So, I was sewn into my dress my senior year!

I attended a prom and the theme was Shania Twain’s “From This Moment,” and we went cow tipping afterwards. Welcome to Kentucky.

I didn’t go to prom…my father showed up at school 3 weeks before and threatened to shoot the knee-caps off of anyone who thought about alcohol in my presence. Needless to say, the phone wasn’t ringing off the hook.

Our theme was Viva Las Vegas, and I wore a red dress. Got lucky, too.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Design Walk & Moo Shu Haiku

Gearing up for the Design Walk, people! It's been quite the hustle and bustle day here at PP headquarters. As you are out and about this evening, stopping by neighborhood hotspots like Lesesne, Blue Bicycle Books, Suite Sole, SieMatic (the Mayor will do their grand opening ribbon cutting!) and more, do remember that our resident mixologist Evan has put together a super fresh Design Walk cocktail: tequila, kumquat Dry soda, fresh orange and ginger. Shaken. Over ice. It's like a sassy bit of spring in a glass.

From the just good creative fun file, please peruse the MOO SHU HAIKU below. If you'll recall, I put out a call for moo shu haiku last week to celebrate Fish's $10 lunch. Please feel free to submit your haiku (5, 7, 5, kids) through the comments or email me: jenny@patpropllc.com. And thanks to all who have submitted thus far.

Half salad half wrap.
That is how I rolled today.
I live on the edge.

-Jessica, Sales Manager

PR Needs Haikus
I’ve Nothing Better to Do
Please go eat Moo shoo.

-Charlotte, Sales Manager

Siracha cream sauce
Chicken or pork? Hard to choose
Definitely chips

-Courtney Jo, Project Coordinator

Yummy rice pancake
Stuffed with grilled tofu and rice
Hot spicy sauce on top


Office takeout fave
Shrimp moo shu defines the day
More cilantro please

-Margaret, Skirt! magazine

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Good business

So, last night at the CVB Travel Council meeting, PP Director of Events Jennifer Goldman announced a darn cool corporate meeting promotion that has some serious pay it forward oomph behind it.

Here's the thing about the all of the brouhaha surrounding the recent corporate meeting scandals you've heard so much about over the past few months. WRETCHED EXCESS, anyone? Clearly, a company that's giving its highrollers beluga caviar, private jets and two-hour massages whilst they rob hardworking people of their 401Ks is not just criminal. It's bad manners, bad business, bad karma and serves no larger purpose.

At the same time, when it comes to GOOD business, nothing takes the place of face-to-face meetings. (And this is coming from me, who loves the social media.) Whether it’s a social, public or educational event, a team-building dinner or strategic planning session, it's important, now more than ever, to bring people together. (Remember, my cafeteria-style strategic planning weekend?)

So, with all of that in mind, here's what we're doing. From now until the end of 2009, Patrick Properties Events will donate 10% of any corporate venue rental fee to the non-profit (501c3) of your choice. That means having your event with us can actually help you pay it forward.

Let's talk reality. What can 10% do?

· Provide a healthy breakfast for 45 people at Crisis Ministries
· Vaccinations for meningitis, measles or polio for 50 people
· Training and employment services to help a homeless person find a job through Crisis Ministries
· Medical training kit containing basic drugs, supplies and equipment to treat 1,500 patients for three months for Doctors Without Borders

If you're thinking of planning a corporate event, you should give us a buzz. Charlotte McDowell and Jessica Kafer, our Sales Managers, are amazing and funny, too. Just call 843.853.1810.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Tuesday Museday

1. Last night, I responsibly enjoyed some Hendrick's gin with Andra Watkins of Positus Consulting. How much do love the packaging? A vintage apothecary bottle? Genius. P.S. Andra is smart and hilarious. If your business needs some new energy, you should call her.

2. Just returned from the Charleston CVB Travel Council Meeting at The American Theater Ballroom. (Yes, a short commute for me.) You can call it a hospitality industry pow wow. There was wine.

3. Funny moment from aforementioned meeting: Andy Rankin's rallying cry for everyone to use packages (accommodations, excursions and otherwise) to attract visitors. He used a package he found online called: THE PUTT & PAMPER (golf & other luxuries). It just might be my new favorite phrase.

4. Thanks to PP Event Manager Rachel Sneed and ALL of you who got haircuts for Salon Couture's Cut-A-Thon. In all, $1200 was raised for Crisis Ministries!

5. General observation: if you live in Charleston long enough, you will find that there are really only two degrees of separation.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Eggs, turnips & more!

Egg salad and deviled eggs? Does that pretty much cover the "what to make with 18 colored, hardboiled eggs" discussion?

Spent lots of time outside this weekend, in the yard, with friends, walking, playing. Much needed. Got to taste some wonderful local produce too, thanks to friends who have a share in Ambrose Farms' CSA. Here's what was on the menu: scalloped turnips, sauteed turnip greens (olive oil and garlic) and fresh strawberries over what may have been the best pound cake ever. Yes, I have wonderful friends.

On Saturday, my partner in crime made her inaugural visit of the season to the Farmer's Market in Marion Square. She scored some grapes, roasted beet and goat cheese ravioli and a gyro. Yay, Spring!

PP Event Manager Rachel Sneed spent her day off getting her hair cut as part of neighbor Salon Couture's Cut-A-Thon. All proceeds from today's business go to Crisis Ministries.

By the by, in case you didn't see it, please peruse Bill Thompson's fine piece on PP Managing Partner Randall Goldman. It's definitely the most incisive piece I've read about Randall. (Well, except for my tell-all expose, but that's a few years down the line.)

Just a reminder for Thursday's Upper King Design Walk. Remember, Lesesne has the new line from Sideshow Press! Oh, and I'll be there too. See? Bonuses all around.

Friday, April 10, 2009

A Truly Good Friday

If you're torn about whether you should go out tonight, rest assured. What better way to spend Good Friday than with Episcopalian-Priest-by-day-DJ-by-night, JAZ?
JAZ, AKA John Zahl, is Fish's Friday night DJ. And, hanging out with John when he's spinning is a nearly, well, a religious experience. That's because JAZ is passionate about what he does. He LOVES music, LOVES vinyl (it's a sensory experience, kids), LOVES interesting people. And to top it all off, he's sincerely one of the kindest, warmest people I've ever met.
More interesting tidbits: He graduated from Kenyon College in 2000 with a degree in philosophy and went on to Oxford for his Master's in Divinity in 2008. He also has a direct connection in the Charleston fashion scene. His wife, Deirdre is Creative Director at Mary Norton. See? Small world.
I have to say, I think of John in the same way that I think about a Bruce Springsteen concert. When asked about his performances, Bruce said something like, "If I get people off their butts to sing and dance, their spirits will naturally follow." A Bruce show is part opera, part comedy, part political rally and part spiritual revival. Hanging out with JAZ, well, you'll just need to follow the music and the man and see where it takes you. JAZ spins every Friday at Fish, from 10 pm until 2 pm.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

These are a few of my favorite things

Super cool paper products, friends, babies, sweets and champagne. And whiskers on kittens. (Ok, not really.) But guess what? They were all in ONE place last night: Lesesne, for Sideshow Press' launch of their latest and greatest. It was a fabulous turnout and got to have a few moments with some great folks...like Annie Byrd Hamnett, Kristin Newman, Tina Garrett and Gus Serrano just to name a few.

Chatted with designer Amy Pastre about the beautiful work on display last night. Turns out the ladies of Sideshow Press use some vintage plates along with their vintage printer. Amy said they find many of their plates at antique stores and even better, they often get them really reasonably because most people don't realize what or how valuable they are.

As much as I love you, Internet, I have to admit there is something awfully appealing about paper that's been cranked through a letterpress by hand. What can I say? I'm a writer, after all, and have a love for the full sensory experience that is a book. There, I said it.

By the by, it's shaping up to be a really busy month around these parts. On Tuesday, The American Theater will host the CVB Travel Council Meeting. Hors d’oeuvres and wine will be served as Travel Council Investors and industry experts take their time getting to know our fabulous new ballroom.

On Thursday, our neighbors at uber kitchen design boutique SieMatic will celebrate their Grand Opening. The Mayor himself will be on-hand to cut the ribbon and welcome guests. Woohoo, photo opp! And, it’s also the night of the Upper King Design Walk. AND, at the same time, The William Aiken House will be hosting 200 people for the Family Circle Cup V.I.P. party! The next day, the Family Circle Cup folks move the party to Lowndes Grove. And finally, near the end of the month Mitchell Crosby of JMC Charleston and Southern Accents descend upon The William Aiken House for a fun-filled holiday party photo shoot. I'm officially tired. Must lie down.

Oh, and one last thing. Should you be a fan of Fish's $10 moo shu lunch, I am officially putting out the call for entries. Comment with your best moo shu haiku. That's 5, 7, 5, people. Give me your haiku, and I will proudly display it here on the PP blog and make you the star I know you are. Thanks!

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Family-style hospitality

Check out a few scenes from today's PP Family Lunch. All PP Managers were asked to either prepare a dish to share or bring in non-perishable food items. We set up all the food as a buffet, loaded up plates and sat at one long table to eat, laugh and just have a few moments together. The lunch was delicious...and varied! Some of my personal favorites were:

Evan's lentils

Courtney Jo's broccoli casserole

Charron's penne with the best cream sauce of MY LIFE

I'll be honest: most days, we here at PP HQ eat at our desks. So, a group-get-together-sit-down-laugh-and-chat-experience is so much fun. You know me, I'm all about bringing people together over a good meal. And that's exactly what this was. After lunch, we gave the non-perishable items to our friends at Crisis Ministries.

Buffet style. Cram a plate with every tasty morsel you can find, sit with friends and eat well until you feel like you might pop.

Seriously, this was a spread that rivalled any major holiday spread. We come to eat.

I think you could safely say that we at PP HQ fancy a sweet morsel now and again. This is Pastry Chef Susie Ieronemo's banana, chocolate pie in mid-attack. We show no mercy.
Finally, if you're out and about tonight, stop by Lesesne between 5 and 9 pm for the debut of Sideshow Press' new line. Free champagne and desserts courtesy of Fish.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Ah, Spring...

In my bones, I know it's Spring, even if the weather this morning tried to tell me otherwise. Take a look at the scene outside the Patricks North Carolina mountain house! Reminds me of Easter snowstorms when I was a child. You know, shivering in your thin dress and white tights while the snow piled up? Memories.
In celebration of Spring (fluctuating temperatures aside), take a look at the list of Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) farms put together by our friends at Lowcountry Local First. CSAs are a great way to support our local farmers AND keep yourself stocked up with the season's freshest produce available.
Other cool bits I ran across today:

Not only did Green Olive Media go to the original Ninfa's on their recent trip to Houston, Texas, they also introduced me to artist Amy Evans. The title to one of her paintings?
I Have Given Up Trying to Be A Gracious Lady. I’m Going Back To Raising Mandrills. ~Flannery O’Connor

The supercool wedding blog, StyleMePretty, ran a stunning real wedding story that featured a same sex couple. Nicely done on the heels of Iowa and Vermont.

Great philosophy no matter what the economy: neighbors over at HOOK do not mark up production costs on any outside services. Oh and they produce some of the most innovative and spot-on creative around. Check out the sweet environmental campaign they put together for sneaker boutique Suite Sole.

And finally today, thanks to the City Paper who mentioned Fish as a favorite outdoor dining spot. Hey, it's Spring. Join us on the patio or the piazza. (Bring a scarf just in case.)

Monday, April 6, 2009

The PP Bridge Run Team AKA The Also-Rans

Look at these world-class athletes, Internet! All members of Team PP who dashed up and over our fair city's biggest bridge on Saturday. (Thanks to Susan Lucas, Queen of King Street, for the photo!) People, I would really love to share more action pics with you, but it seems that Team PP jettisoned and/or forgot all cell phones/cameras in their valiant efforts to make good time. If you're dying for some fabulous photos, do check out The City Paper's flickr set. Suffices to say that everyone on Team PP completed the race. Thankfully, there were no injuries to report, although I do have it on good authority that a certain Executive Chef needed a massage today. (I'm just saying.)

Yesterday, Managing Partner Randall Goldman joined the folks of AFFA for their 2nd Annual Oyster Roast Fundraiser at Bowen's Island. (Sidenote: Liam, age 3, was a huge hit with the female toddlers in the crowd.) The fundraiser was a phenomenal success, raising more than $7,000 between tickets and a live auction by the one and only Doug Warner (fresh from his Charleston Fashion Week gig!)

Now, I have been out to Bowen's Island for a couple of oyster roasts now, and one PP holiday party. But I confess, I had not seen their "green" roof until now. It really is on the roof, so I did have to climb up to see it, but wow, it's impressive and beautiful.

Friday, April 3, 2009

Pre-Bridge Run Banter

Was out at Lowndes Grove earlier today for the Bridge Run Press Luncheon. Saw Mayor Riley and...randomly...three singers and dancers (or hoofers, as my Dad used to say) who did the whole Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy number. I am not kidding. It was very USO. Really got the crowd going.

Anywho, in other news, 6 members of Team PP are gearing up for tomorrow's Bridge Run. Nico will be putting his recently rehabbed knee to the test. Never fear: photos to come on Monday.

In clever and funny food advertising news, check out Julia Louis-Dreyfus as she plays the unspokeperson for Healthy Choice. Her facial expressions are so very Elaine. Great way to add some energy to the brand.

By the way, if you're looking to peruse Fish's spring menu, it's now on the website. And it. Is. Good. Perhaps you should reward yourself after the Bridge Run with a nice meal. You and Nico can trade stories about whose shin splints hurt more. Fun!

And finally, mark your calendars for next Wednesday, April 8. Our friends at Lesesne are hosting the debut of the newest letterpress creations by Sideshow Press. Fish is supplying the desserts. Shindig start time: 5 pm until 9 pm.

Okay, kids. Don't forget to stretch. And remember, don't be a hero! Good luck to all. (I'll be the one waiting at the finish line with the mimosas.)

Thursday, April 2, 2009

A veritable plethora of subjects

Boy oh boy, nothing like a little April Fool's tomfoolery to get the creative juices flowing! The Charleston blogosphere was awash in antics yesterday. I can take no credit for Randall's resignation epistle, though as it was penned by the man himself. I can honestly say I have never written nor uttered the word Brobdingnagian until, well, this moment. Tis catchy, though. Really catchy.

In other news, Fish is reviewed in the hot-off-the-presses April issue of Charleston Magazine. Writer Patricia Agnew covered every inch of the Fish experience, from decor to small plates to flavor and texture and hey, she even referenced this very blog!

In other food and beverage news, I simply adore the photo and write up of Charleston Grill's Chef Michelle Weaver. I have been a huge fan for years.

Off to meet photographer Tim Zielenbach (he of the amazing moments that open our website) in a bit. Not only is Tim a talented photographer, he's also very funny, a great storyteller and JACKPOT, a Bruce Springsteen fan! In fact, he sent me lyrics to the long lost Bruce classic: Does this bus stop at 82nd Street, which begins with the magical line: "Hey bus driver keep the change, bless your children, give them names..." Speaking of Bruce, if you haven't watched fellow New Jerseyan Jon Stewart openly adoring Bruce TO Bruce, you should.

And finally, for those of you who dig on swine, I mean, sweet pigs named Dallas Alice, check out these lovely photos from Melissa and Keith's recent wedding at Lowndes Grove.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Breaking News: Randall Resigns!

April 1, 2009

To All-

It is with great sadness and regret that I announce today that I am stepping down as Managing Partner of Patrick Properties. As you can imagine, this decision was not an easy one. In my time here in Charleston, I have been blessed to keep company with some of the finest hospitality minds around, and I have made many friends whom I will cherish for the rest of my days.

I am proudest, of course, of our efforts to continue increasing revenue while saving positions given the current economic conditions. Our staffing hires over the past few months and years have assured that we shall rank among the city’s, State and nation’s elite event destinations for years to come.

But despite these accomplishments, the hospitality can be a harsh mistress, and I have ambitions and dreams that remain unfulfilled. It is with that in mind that Jennifer and I have decided to retire to the Texas Hill country, where I will pursue my first love: raising Emus. Not as a source of food, mind you, but as a means of human locomotion.

Some of my finest hours have been spent cantering across the Texas plains on the back of an Emu. They are stately, resplendent, Brobdingnagian birds, capable of carrying a man at full gallop the length of 30 hectares on a single hogshead of millet seed.

For those who know me best, this announcement comes as no surprise. I have always been passionate about large flightless waterfowl. It is well-known, of course, that I ate the last Dodo, and less well-known that I once crossed the Straits of Magellan on the back of an Emperor Penguin.

But my passion for the humble Emu was sparked by a chance conversation with Alan Rau. Jennifer and I were vacationing with Professor Rau at his single room cabin in the Montana wilderness. Professor Rau, as was his custom, was wearing his hooded sweatshirt and aviator-style sunglasses while he worked on one of his lengthy manifestos. I chanced a remark that I was thinking of purchasing a Segway scooter (I had recently been bested in a drag race between my trusty Saab and a group of tourists on Segway scooters). Professor Rau immediately unleashed a stream of invective, something along the lines of “the Industrial Revolution and it consequences have been a disaster for the human race!”

I immediately backpedaled from my suggestion, but I was captured by a singular notion: what if I could mesh the idea of sensible personal transportation with Alan Rau’s Druidic ecological purity?

The answer, I realized, was right in front of me, as that evening we happened to be dining on ostrich burgers. But the ostrich, as I discovered after a few test rides, is a surly and noisome beast, and I quickly gravitated towards riding the more elegant, redolent, and pulchritudinous Emu.

One can only imagine the Xanadu that awaits us all, as cars are rendered irrelevant and our reliance upon fossil fuels evaporates. Cities will be redesigned, carbon emissions reduced, and in place of the automobile, Emus will become ubiquitous. We shall all bear witness to the boom of the Emu Economy, with Australia poised to lead the way, fueled by its abundance of Emus and affordable criminal labor.

And so it is with great sadness that I must bid you farewell. My time here as Managing Partner has been the finest of my life, but as I ride off into the sunset, please think of me as I’d wish to be remembered: galloping across Texas on the back of a large flightless bird.

Warmest regards,

Randall Goldman

(Ed note: Not really.)