Thursday, April 26, 2007

The Plot Thickens

Herewith, Dear Readers, a mystery worthy of Hercule Poirot, or at least Miss Marple. Whilst raping and pillaging some poor unfortunate company this morning away from my quotidian domicile—or office, for those among you habituated to respirating with mouths agape—my trusty Blackberry shivered invitingly with the arrival of the 6:00 am cut from FT Alphaville. At the first opportunity, I turned eagerly to the missive, as is my wont, in order to discern what fresh outrage my brethren across the pond might have precipitated upon victims corporate or institutional, so better as to incorporate the model of their misdeeds into my own repertoire of misbehavior.

Imagine my delight, then, when I perused the following item secreted demurely near the end of the communiqué:
Blackstone ensures no more ‘secrets with Stephen’
Those of you who have Blackstone chief Stephen Schwarzman’s “anonymous” blog - “Secrets with Stephen” - bookmarked may have noticed a drop-off in dish, says DealBreaker. No speculation concerning the how’s and why’s of Henry Kravis’s new puppy, Mr Barky Von Schnauzer, and his recent “operation”. Not even a thinly veiled account of dining at the home of someone sounding suspiciously like Kohlberg, who served a sea bass that Stephen felt “left something to be desired”. What’s up? Well, it could have something to do with the fact that Schwarzman received a note from Blackstone IT last week informing him that they’d been keeping track and found an average of 4.5 hours a day on something called to be “inappropriate use of a company computer”. Or it could just be because Blackstone is currently in its “quiet period”[?]

Now, while I modestly number myself among the Wise and Great when it comes to decades of experience with investment banking rapine and slaughter, I openly acknowledge being a neophyte when it comes to all things internet. I had never heard of Mr. Schwarzman's eponymous blogsite, and I chafed with eagerness to investigate it once I had returned to a locale more conducive to full-screen browsing.

But lo, when I returned to my secret volcano lair and attempted to click through to the blogsite cited in the DealBreaker link referred to by the FT piece, I came up distinctly empty. There was no "" to peruse. Thorough canvassing of the blogosphere by my sainted assistant—after she had returned from her appointed task of delivering me a double tall soy milk latte from Starbucks—turned up no trace of the missing link, either.

Now, I am aware that some commentators out there view DealBreaker as a silly and nonsensical blog aggregator with delusions of grandeur, but I for one am convinced of the reverence and utter seriousness with which its contributors approach the world of private equity. (After all, who else among their sources can afford to buy them $40 martinis at the latest downtown hotspot?) I know the DealBreaker staff would never intentionally mislead their readers—much less the Financial Times—and I also know that their fact-checkers are second only to those employed by that peerless exemplar of financial journalism in our times, The New York Post. Therefore, I can only conclude that there indeed was a website so named, so authored, and containing content so outlined, but that it has been taken down without a trace.

Given its authorship by one of the preeminent literary commentators of our time, and the no doubt penetrating insights said blog offered into the mind and morals of a Titan of New York Society, the fact that a person or persons unknown had the temerity to censor the most intimate thoughts of Steve Schwarzman strikes me as a great crime, one ranking in enormity with such modern-day horrors as soy milk lattes and Donald Trump's combover.

I am outraged, outraged; and I want answers.

© 2007 The Epicurean Dealmaker. All rights reserved.