Making Book

John Haber
in New York City

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The Donald Trump announced today that he was quitting his race for the presidency to acquire

The news stunned hundreds of people who have heard of the Reform Party and surf the Web all day while pretending to work. Insiders put the purchase price at $3.8 gazillion.

At a press conference held on the front page of The New York Post, the real-estate mogul seemed elated by the decision. "The Web is going to be the next big thing after my residential tower overlooking the UN. I may have already found a site for it." Don't ask, do tell!

The celebrity-for-some-reason-or-other refused to comment directly on the troubled retail operation, which has yet to return a profit. "What do you mean, books? We're talking amazons, with deep tans and big boobs."

Standing at his side, Trump's campaign manager and close confidant, the Artist Formerly Known As Prick, vowed to help continue the fight for the Reform Party banner. "Donald's girlfriend has every intention of carrying on—I mean, carrying on his ideals, whatever they may be, in his place."

The former supermodel, the Artist Formerly Known As Tits, insisted that politics to her was more than a rich person's hobby. "You must be thinking about Steve Forbes or George W." She noted that her symbol in place of a name is already in use by ordinary Americans, especially in men's toilet stalls. "This campaign," she boasted, "is about every man's dream."

She immediately proposed a program of sweeping tax cuts targeting the fifteen wealthiest Americans, Jesse Ventura, and the Professional Wrestling Association.

Seemingly awed by the changes, her leading opponent for the Reform Party nod gave up on the spot. Pat Buchanan said he plans to retire to his newly adopted home, the state of Israel.

Meanwhile, Wall Street struggled to make sense of's loss of independence. "What could they have done wrong?" questioned an analyst at Smith, Fred & Barney.

"An online store has almost no warehouse expenses. The customer pays shipping. Even the Christmas parties are boring." Other traders pointed to freshman tuition for the firm's founders and the price of appearing as a running joke on Letterman. "The cost," said analyst Dan Nerdling, "had become simply prohibitive."

Speculation in Washington could not be heard over the shouting on the McLauglin Group. Later, however, George Will attributed's failure to a decline in moral values. "They insisted on shipping books indiscriminately."

Scholars largely agreed. "Reading has to fall off," commented social critic Francis Fukuyama. "With the end of the Cold War, there is nothing left to write about. Besides," he added, "Reagan is now too senile to buy my books."'s outgoing chair said the decision to sell had been a difficult one.

Reached in his dorm room, Jeff Bozo called it the product of weeks of struggle. "We had to, like, explain to the entire board that, like, you know, money is cool."

The firm's chief financial officer had been especially disappointed, Bozo reflected. "MBAs were calling our approach just-in-time and thought it was really hot. He wanted to surprise them with, like, even more cost savings, just as soon as he got his baseball cap on right.

"Take the orders, hey, rake in the cash, don't even bother to send out any books. He was gonna call it 'not-in-time retailing.' He was, like, so proud of himself."

Asked about his share from the takeover, Bozo anticipated no major changes in lifestyle. "Like most evenings around midnight. Send out for pizza."

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