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Celebrated columnist Stanley Bing is an anthropologist of corporate culture, a satirist of corporate greed, a comedian of the libido. In his remarkable first novel, Lloyd: What Happened, Bing gives us the last word on business in America.
Brazenly honest and wildly funny, Lloyd shows us one crucial year in the life of an upwardly mobile executive for whom pain and gain walk hand in hand. Lloyd is a pretty decent guy. He has an assortment of flaws. He's married, a little chunky, well into the mid-six
figures, which sounds great but means only that he has to work harder every day just to stay where he is. He can see through the corporate veil of stupidity and brutality when he wants to, which is not very often. He loves his wife and children and, suddenly, a senior financial officer named Mona.
Reeling toward the millennium in the era of gross, global consolidation, the corporation is on the verge of launching the most audacious transaction in the history of capitalism. They call it Moby Deal, and Lloyd is put in charge of making it all happen, a mandate he receives early one morning through the miasma of a let-me-die-now hangover. The good news is that Lloyd is perfectly suited to the task: he looks okay in a suit, can drink or eat just about anything that's put in front of him, and has a strong value system that has never stopped him from accomplishing any assigned duty.
Can Lloyd achieve Productivity? Can he get lean without being mean? Can he inspire increasingly greater numbers of people to do more for less while he himself does less for more? Can he gain the world without losing his soul? Can he keep his hands off a valued and extremely attractive associate?
Lloyd: What Happened is brilliantly and comically annotated with color bar graphs, pie charts, diagrams, and illustrated flourishes. It is the iconographic equivalent of an illuminated manuscript for the modern world, with a story that will make readers laugh out loud and cringe with recognition of every character and situation. Bing is a master storyteller and has written what is sure to be a classic of our time.
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Lloyd seems like a good guy. He's got an average wife, two kids, $200,000 a year with perks, plus a nice dog named Steve. But what happens to Lloyd when he starts to climb the corporate ladder? Lloyd--What Happened : A Novel of Business is the story of the modern corporate workplace--its greed, politics, affairs, drugs, groveling cohorts, graphs, and dietary habits. Fortune magazine columnist Stanley Bing follows Lloyd month-by-month in his pursuit to reengineer his company and pull off one of the biggest deals ever (we're never quite sure what the deal is exactly).
Bing is at his best when describing Lloyd's many idiosyncrasies: what he buys when grocery shopping, his love of his dog Steve, his appraisal of various beers. For example: "There was Foster's lager, which was average beer but came in an enormous can, which was not something to be sneezed at. When one's wife said, 'How many beers have you had?' on the cusp of driving off to someplace social of an early evening, the honest Foster's husband could say 'One!' and not be criticized, even though that one beer was the equivalent of two gigantic tankards of lusty ale."
Lloyd includes a portfolio of full-color presentations chock full of business clip art that graphs everything from the "Number of Laughs Enjoyed in Lloyd's Corporation As a Function of Profit Growth" and "Suit Size As a Function of Income/Vodka Consumption" to an examination of "What Lloyd Eats" and a summary of Lloyd's travels in Germany. If you enjoyed Stanley Bing in Esquire and Fortune, then you'll find that Lloyd is a must read. Bing's good humor captures many of the follies of business life that most readers will recognize and appreciate. --Harry C. EdwardsFrom the Back Cover:
"A scathingly snide send-up of American business that's rendered with expertise, affection, and satiric brilliance by one who's lived it."
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