words to live by

Michael Lewis dishes out definitive business advice:

Danny Moses, who became [Steve] Eisman’s head trader [at FrontPoint Partners], was another who shared his perspective. Raised in Georgia, Moses, the son of a finance professor, was a bit less fatalistic than [Vincent] Daniel or Eisman, but he nevertheless shared a general sense that bad things can and do happen. When a Wall Street firm helped him get into a trade that seemed perfect in every way, he said to the salesman, “I appreciate this, but I just want to know one thing: How are you going to screw me?”
    Heh heh heh, c’mon. We’d never do that, the trader started to say, but Moses was politely insistent: We both know that unadulterated good things like this trade don’t just happen between little hedge funds and big Wall Street firms. I’ll do it, but only after you explain to me how you are going to screw me. And the salesman explained how he was going to screw him. And Moses did the trade.

Hence the difference between business and pleasure. Thus spake Rod Stewart, thrice married, twice divorced, sire to seven children from five different women: “Instead of getting married again, I’m going to find a woman I don’t like and just give her a house.” No cause for inquiry there.