Editor's Note: Welcome to "Funny Money," a feature written by New York-based comedian Jeff Kreisler. Lest there be any confusion, please note that this column is a work of satire and intended for entertainment purposes only. Enjoy the weekend.This week Alan Greenspan agreed to publish his memoirs, which will be marketed as an alternative to Ambien. The 300-page book, which will include a 500-page glossary of cryptic terms, lays out in shocking detail how steroid use made him the home run king... After AT&T's $67 billion purchase of BellSouth -- who was a character in The Dukes of Hazzard by the way -- industry watchers think Verizon will make a big purchase next. Let me just say this to Verizon: I have an unlimited supply of both string and empty coffee cans. Call me. Uh, actually, better send a letter. My phone's not working. In other merger news, NBC purchased iVillage, an Internet company devoted to women. What's the big deal about an Internet company devoted to women? That's pretty much all I have bookmarked... Speaking of which, the studio behind Desperate Housewives has been aggressively shopping reruns of the show before everyone realizes it's just a soap opera that airs after 6 p.m. Blackstone, ever nefarious, purchased CarrAmerica in a devious attempt to have Carr battle Kitt in a final confrontation over which David Hasselhoff vehicle was better: Knight Rider or Baywatch. DaimlerChrysler dismissed several employees involved in an international bribery scheme, mostly because it didn't work. In a weird joint maneuver, lawyers defending Merck's Vioxx claimed that Ken Lay was responsible for approving the faulty drug, and Lay's attorneys blamed his addiction to Vioxx for decision-making at Enron. Actually, Enron's defense team really did suggest that CEO Jeffrey Skilling was just being sarcastic when he said, "They're on to us." Ah, the old "just kidding" defense. Frankly, as a lawyer, I would've gone with the "whoever smelt it, dealt it" strategy. In another twist, former HealthSouth CEO Richard Scrushy was seen at the Enron trial, in the strangest crossover since Mork appeared on Happy Days. Mork calling exploitation, come in exploitation.
I don't know why Enron is putting up such a fight. Can't Lay just plead guilty and then wait for President Bush to pardon him on his last day in office? Krispy Kreme named Daryl Brewster CEO. You may remember Brewster from Brewster's Millions, in which Richard Pryor had to eat 10 million doughnuts in order to inherit 300 million scones. Wal-Mart sent a cease and desist letter to a man parodying the company. Let me say this to Wal-Mart: You're great. Shareholders at Hewlett-Packard complained that the $21.4 million severance paid to Carly Fiorina was too high. Noting that it's women's history month, Dick Grasso and his $193 million just laughed and laughed. Shell Oil bought $32 million in residential property in New Orleans to lease to workers. No joke, just kudos to Shell. (Though I'm sure it's all part of some sinister plan. Damn those good deeds!) The government of Dubai pulled out of the controversial ports deal, telling the President it was better to keep making billions off America covertly, rather than out in the open, to which Bush replied, "Ah, but I wanna tell them about our love. I'm not ashamed!" Then Dubai said, "I wish I could quit you." The NYSE became a publicly traded company this week. Oh no! What will happen if the stock exchange is infiltrated by greedy people just looking to make money? A big concern is whether humans will be phased out by electronic systems. One trader was quoted saying, "I give us 10 years, max." To which several others replied "9!" "7.5!" Eliot Spitzer's case that the music industry isn't honest and merit-based moved forward. Next up: Boxing seems sketchy. For the first time in 20 years, soda sales slumped. Coke and Pepsi issued a joint statement blaming Red Bull, Celebrity Fit Club, and former FEMA chief Michael Brown. Finally, U.S. worker productivity fell in the fourth quarter for the first time in four years. Thank you, "Funny Money" readers!