Dear E. Jean:I was recently referred for a job opportunity to be the right-hand person of a bona fide Manhattan billionaire. It’s an amazing opportunity, for which I am very well qualified as a recent Stanford business-school graduate. I would give my left foot for this job! The problem is that to even have a chance, I feel that I must get a personal introduction to this billionaire, not just to one of his aides. (I already have that.) Through a mutual friend, I reached out to an old society grande dame who can connect me to Mr. Billionaire, but she hasn’t answered my missive (and I’m afraid she never will).
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So how can I get a one-on-one chat with Mr. B? I am working all the connections I have, but I seem to be coming up short. E. Jean, do you have any other suggestions? I’m willing to try anything! Thank you! —Ardent
Ardent, My Artichoke: Edith Wharton is guffawing in her grave at your innocent “reaching out” to a Manhattan socialite. One never “reaches out” to the rich. One sends the “old society grande dame” a gift, perhaps a box of vintage Cartier note cards. (We may as well make another couple of billionaires richer, because now that I think of it, I just made Sergey Brin and Larry Page fatter by Googling “Cartier vintage stationery.”) Add a note inviting the lady to tea at Manhattan’s legendary Carlyle hotel. The rich love presents. Didn’t they teach you anything at Stanford?