I really like working for the guys at the agency. I call it the agency, or I just tell people that I work for a detective agency. I can’t bring myself to call it “G&B Detective Agency.” Do you know what G&B stands for? Guns and blades! Come on. Everyone askes me, “what does G&B stand for?” and I have to tell them, “guns and blades.” Uh, yeah, I work for Guns and Blades Detective Agency. I just think that they could have come up with a little more businesslike name. But it is a good place to work, and the guys treat me great. They treat my daughter Essie great, too. She loves the heck out of both of them. They’re sweethearts.

I feel like my job is to keep them on track. They both tend to do things without thinking, especially Max. Skip thinks that he is more on top of everything than Max is, but he isn’t. The biggest thing that I do is screen the calls that they get. They don’t want to work. I know: why even have a detective agency if you aren’t going to take cases? Because they don’t know anything else. I mean, they could open a cupcake bakery and not make cupcakes so they had somewhere to hang out all day, but that wouldn’t work because they don’t know jack about cupcakes. At least they know something about being detectives. So they have a detective agency that doesn’t take cases.

So back to the calls: when you win the Powerball, you get real popular. We get our fair share of scammers. I know they are scammers because they sound like scammers. You can spot a scammer a mile away. Haha, just joking. I sound like Delbert. Seriously, scammers are tricky, but I’m pretty good at hanging up on them. Then there are people looking for the guys to invest in some business venture. At first I used to listen to their pitches. There are some pretty creative people out there trying to make a buck. I used to like to hear what they had come up with, but honestly, the guys are not venture capitalists. It takes a particular business acumen to be a VC, and the guys just don’t have it in them. It is better for them to stay away from things like that. Commodities too: sometimes Skip starts thinking he is some kind of investment genius and starts looking at commodities futures. The nice thing is that he always comes up and runs it by me before he does anything, and I shut him down as quick as I can. I try not to be subtle about it. He needs to know that it isn’t a good idea. The financial and investment adviser and I keep a close eye on Skip.

Then there are the people looking for help. Those are the hard ones. Some of those are scammers, most are legit. The problem is who is who and where do you draw the line? So around Christmas every year, I sit down with the guys and we decide what charitable giving we are going to do for the following year. Then we give ‘til it hurts. That’s what Max says. It actually doesn’t hurt, it feels good. And once we get that all down on paper, that’s that. Of course, I can’t keep them from writing a check to the Boys and Girls club or the Battered Women’s Shelter, but those are just smaller donations, and it is good for the guys to be reminded that a little bit here and there can help someone out a lot. I actually fudge that into the charitable giving budget each year. But for the most part, I play the bad guy for them and screen the calls.

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