1. Hobbit Your WayWe at the Five Dumbest Things Research Lab recognize the constitutional right of publicly traded companies to send nutty emails. But we draw the line at corporate poetry. So imagine our outrage this week when data storage company Network Appliance ( NTAP) sent us a rhyming message. Perhaps our mistake was to read beyond the salutation: "Greetings Data Earth, from the Lord of the Enterprise," read the email. But, having nothing better to do, we read on. In the land of the enterprise, where storage continues to evolve.
One unified storage platform to rule them all,
One unified storage platform for enterprise customer needs,
One unified storage platform to bring power to all,
And simplicity to data deeds.
In the land of the enterprise, where storage continues to evolve. Catchy, huh? And rhythmic, too! Anyway, depending on how much time you spent reading about Frodo Baggins, the Orcs and other denizens of Middle-earth, you may recognize that NetApp's poetry is a takeoff on a prominent bit of verse in J.R.R. Tolkien's Lord of the Rings trilogy. (Note to future English majors: "One ring" rolls off the tongue more easily than "One unified storage platform.")
|Net Poets' Society |
2. Letter RipMost of the time, a Schedule 13D -- a form that shareholders must file with the Securities and Exchange Commission once they own more than 5% of a company's stock -- is pretty dull reading. But not when Robert L. Chapman Jr. mails one in. Chapman, managing member of Chapman Capital, is an investor of the scorched-earth variety. If he assembles a big stake in a company, it's usually because he thinks management should scram and/or sell off whatever they're managing. And when he wants management to know this, he doesn't mince words. The latest target of his wrath is NWH ( NWIR), owner of a health-care services company. As RealMoney Pro contributor Mark Haefele pointed out this week, Chapman wrote quite a missive last week to NWH chief Terrence Cassidy, a copy of which he helpfully included in
3. Library Honoree Gets BookedAnother day, another person with his name on a building at New Jersey's Seton Hall University gets into trouble.
|Seton Hall of Shame |
Bad men on campus
|Not Very NYSE |
4. I See a Vacation Day and I Want to Paint It BlackSpeaking of unsolicited advice, here's some for the New York Stock Exchange: If you don't want people to be taking off early Dec. 24, just say so. Certain executive orders such as these should be done face-to-face, not via a poorly art-directed schedule of holidays on your Web site.
5. El Condor PasaThe Research Lab now brings to your attention the latest craze sweeping the nation: memorably awkward statements made during retirement ceremony tribute speeches. Yes, you probably were thinking of Trent Lott's "senior moment" at Strom Thurmond's goodbye party. But don't overlook comments made this week by William Wise, chief executive of El Paso ( EP). In a statement marking the retirement of one Joel Richards III, executive vice president of administration, Wise said, "Joel Richards played a crucial role in developing the highly disciplined corporate culture that defines El Paso's workforce." Highly disciplined corporate culture, huh? Well, we're sure Joel Richards is a good guy and he has nothing to do with any of this, but "highly disciplined" isn't the first thing we think of these days when we get around to thinking of El Paso's workforce.
|El Paso's a Gas |