Originally Posted by Nords
Let's not overlook good ol' pioneering capitalism-- the true American spirit.
There were some of them I'm sure, but many of the guys who wound up here were the elite, the guys who were on the collecting end of the bribes being paid back in the old country.
My partner and I took a SCUBA certification class together in the 80's, and three of our fellow students were the regional directors for security for the three major chains of convenience stores in the city back then. When we had to go out of town on an open water dive class one volunteered to transport us in his company car.
The drive was passed with us all telling
lies war stories
w*rk stories. Having crime fighting in common, and specifically convenience store crimes, which are so often the scene of criminality (police nicknames for two of the chains were "U-Rob-'Em" for the U-Tote-'Em stores and "Stop-n-Rob for Stop-n-Go stores) most of the stories were about what went on in c-stores.
Among the stories we heard, was one involving a family comprised of a former government official and his wife and sisters-in-law who had been movie stars. They had escaped as a group and found there wasn't much work for Vietnamese movie stars or former government ministers in the US, so they purchased a franchise store and were all working there together.
One of the younger sons had made off with several thousands of dollars worth of money orders. His parents came to see the security guy to find out what it would take to make the problem go away. Mom came in the office holding a 3-pound size Folger's coffee can that she held on her lap during the meeting. They were insistent that there had to be some way of making baby boy's legal problems go away without involving police and courts. The security guy acknowledged the family's excellent service to the company, and said if full restitution was made he would drop the charges. Moms smiled and put the coffee can on his desk and indicated he should look inside and take what was needed.
The can was almost full of diamonds.
Another involved one of the ex-colonels who had started with one store and was working his way toward his own little c-store empire. A nasty divorce inside the corporate offices of the chain resulted in a phone call from an executive's soon-to-be-ex to tell the security people about hubby's activities that were defrauding the company. She invited them to her house where she opened the safe and showed them the gold bars that her husband had collected. The colonel was paying him off in gold to grease the skids and cut costs on the purchase agreements for all the company stores he was collecting.
They were an interesting people to work around back in those days. Especially the generals, colonels and what not. Those guys, or a lot of them, had been the power in Vietnam and the smart ones had saved up a few dollars (or carats) of "get-out-of-town" money in case the regime bit the big one. The no-so-smart ones stayed behind to be "re-educated".
Men in those occupations have to have post-regime options. Do you remember the famous photo of the Vietnamese Police General executing a VC guerilla? He "retired" to the US and owned a pizza shop for years.
When I saw the movie The Ladykillers
, with Tzi Ma playing the character, "The General" (who owned a donut shop), I instantly recognized the character. I think his cousin ran U-Tot-'em store # 411.
Hilarious, but Not Safe For Work Video follows: