So You Want to Invest in a Man

by John Thompson

Hello there, and congratulations, for you have bravely chosen to embark upon a voyage into the world of male investment! As seasoned veterans of the man management business, it’s long been our position that claiming personal stake in male humans brings with it manifold benefits. As a new entrant into the market, you should know that male investment is a frequently frustrating and only occasionally productive practice. We’re here to make sure you know what to look for when it comes to building your portfolio.

Like a precious stone, male investment has many facets. When most people think of investing, their minds often turn to “romantic investment” arrangements. These are among our most popular portfolio options: whether he is housebound or free range, deeply involved or simply functional, a man can provide no small measure of entertainment and something proximal to love for anyone with enough time on their hands to bother.

Other men offer additional, exciting opportunities in the world of “social investment.” A poor romantic investment can often salvage value in the sphere of the social. With their limited comprehension and poor reasoning skills, men can liven your circles with appealing dopeyness. Laugh along with your friends as he makes sounds with his mouth! Men can also serve as board game opponents.

The third and final realm of male investment is “cultural investment.” Many men have produced things that are, arguably, of cultural value. Savvy investors can pick and choose which such objects they want to elevate through their patronage. If nothing else, investment in male cultural detritus can create bonds with others who have likewise deemed it worthy of notice. We think you’ll find that the curatorial impulse has a magic all its own.

It should be said, however, that male investment is not for everyone. For all the purposes that a good man can serve–smelling good, picking things up, record collecting–there are some investors for whom the man simply holds no appeal. Additionally, any sort of investment in a male carries a systemic risk. A man can be, and often is, quite troublesome. The crude and ugly legacy of man stretches back through time. Somehow, they’ve managed to jury-rig the apparatuses of politics, culture and technology to be open to them in ways not afforded to us.

All the more reason to keep a tight leash on your investment.

If you are able to make it past the general risks, you should still keep in mind that different varieties of man carry idiosyncratic risks of various natures and qualities. To help you on your way to a stable and profitable portfolio, we’ve compiled this (incomplete) list of man variants, with short analysis as to their suitability qua investment:

Mandy Patinkin: Beyond its clear potential for profit in the beard futures market, the novelty value of this man is improved by its rich tenor. We recommend that this investment be primarily cultural, as the creature is known to be temperamental and prone to abrupt flight and thus a poor candidate for domestic ownership. Great care must also be taken not to kill its father.

Professional Wrestlers: On the one hand, professional wrestlers are professionals. Investors interested in the aesthetic merits of “swole” morphotypes will find much to recommend in this portfolio area. However, prolonged study has revealed that this breed of man is prone to abrupt shifts in mood, from heroic to villainous and back again, and many investors report that their pro wrestling men are uncooperative and preoccupied with “going over.” We recommend a purely social investment, which will abrogate risk while preserving aesthetic enjoyment.

Vincent D’onofrio: Many adventurous investors are drawn to eccentricity, and for these people, the gentle twitchiness of Vincent D’onofrio is a balm upon the soul. Like a Saint Bernard, this man is very large and prone to distraction, but emotes well. Perhaps a bit unstable for social investment, but in the realm of the romantic and cultural, you could do worse.

Jean Genet: The infamous gay thief-turned-philosopher/playwright significant countercultural cache provided by this model would be a boon to any investor of a certain class and circumstance. Please note that optimal ROI is generally reserved for Lower East Side poets of the 70’s and 80’s (see also: Rimbaud). However, like most culturally productive investments, Mr. Genet is a volatile asset when deployed socially.

Jonathan Franzen: The archetypal poor all-around investment. Terse when it should be eloquent, loud about any number of things it should quiet itself over (and that’s a lot of things, even for a man), unfit for the home or social gatherings. Its cultural value fluctuates with its productive output, and the actual quality of said fluctuates as well even as its perceived quality is inflated.

Tom Hiddleston: British ~thespians~ are a huge pain in the ass, for real. They can’t even save face after talking shit without adding a bit of backhand. Can you imagine having to deal with that on a daily basis? Plus, can you even be sure you know what you’re getting?? A toxic investment.

Richard Dawkins: Not suitable for investment.

Iggy Pop: Some prognosticators maintain that Pop is past its prime, and frankly, this is impossible to dispute. But some classics don’t go out of style. If nothing else, you’re probably taller than it is. Please note that whatever fell pact that was famously preventing Pop from aging expired sometime in 2005. It is old now, and it likely does not wear underwear.

Beat Poets: Long considered the pyrite of man investment, the significance of beat poets’ value is routinely and shamelessly exaggerated. Please note that exposure of young males to beat poets can potentially ruin them forever.

Russell Brand: Another example of investment value inflation, Russell Brand receives inordinate praise for saying and writing things that are nominally sane. It also wears leather vests, a classic red flag (please read the Joel Schumacher appendix for more on this topic). Speculators have claimed it has “great cheekbones”, but this is disputable. You could do worse, but you could do so much better than the Brand brand.

Johnny Depp: While there is something to be said for swarthiness as an appreciable asset, it is difficult to tell at this point whether Johnny Depp’s skin is made from wax, leather, human tissues or some combination thereof. Remote and uncooperative for social use, and possessed of judgment unbefitting personal use (refer to: public statements; tattoos; Marilyn Manson, friendship with). Overstates own eccentricity. Comes with private island.

Daft Punk: Thorough analysis indicates that all social and cultural benefits derived from Daft Punk would be gained from Michael McDonald or Christopher Cross investment at a fraction of asking price. Only chrome enthusiasts and / or Francophiles need apply.

Lot: Previous investors testify that Lot is a perfectly nice man, but it seems to attract unusually severe value fluctuations in other investment portfolio areas, particularly in agriculture and daughter sectors. Initial ROI valleys should be weathered until God decides to stop fucking with Lot and double your investment, as though it were no big thing.

Art Students: AVOID.

Photo via Shaun Wong/Flickr

John W. Thompson is a professional student pursuing a Master’s Degree at the University of Colorado at Denver. He tweets at @Basic_Chunnel. His work has appeared on The Toast.