super heroes

Investors gave Bernie Madoff money because they trusted him. They gave Sam Israel money because they liked him—a gregarious, disarming goofball who, as a Wall Street apprentice, had invented an alter ego he called Captain Proton, a fearless superhero whose special powers were granted by vodka and cocaine. Now in his forties, he lived in a Westchester mansion, rented from Donald Trump for $22,000 a month, with an adjacent chapel in which he had built a replica of the Bayou trading floor alongside an 800-­gallon saltwater fish tank and a menagerie of rare reptiles. He’d also installed a high-end studio for jam sessions, where he’d play with the Allman Brothers’ drummer when the band was in town. He owned a fleet of Porsches and signed personal checks printed with the image of SpongeBob SquarePants…Once he’d welcomed his family home from a short trip standing in the driveway wearing cowboy boots, his wife’s bikini underwear, a lacrosse helmet, swim goggles, a life jacket, and a cape, then started screaming at his wife when she didn’t get the joke. [NYM, related]

He’s not asking for it, he’s just saying, if you want to do it, it’s cool with him. A comic book would also be okay. [TCL]

  • 12 Oct 2010 at 3:52 PM

Help Us Design The Dollar Dominatrix Action Figure

Late last week, Bloomberg Markets profiled AQR founder Cliff Asness, who has continued his boyhood “obsession” with comic books and their characters into adulthood. His desk in Greenwich is home to Spiderman, Captain America, The Hulk and Iron Man, he has a Captain America shield on his right bicep and he “identifies with” many a super hero. In sum, Asness fancies himself one of them and to that end, is clearly dying for someone to make a character modeled after him. A very talented DB reader (and fellow hedge fund quant) did just that. As we were discussing possible sidekicks and a love interest for Quant Man, however, we realized there was a problem that needed rectifying. Before we can continue with Cliff, who is the one person who truly deserves her own action figure? Read more »

A talented DB reader submitted the following image in response to our earlier Cliff Asness post, wherein we learned the he has not only a lifelong love of but “identifies with” many a super hero, and suggested there might be a hope inside him that someone, one day, will create a character modeled after the AQR founder. We think the sketch bears a haunting resemblance to the man himself and view it as a solid first attempt at Quant Man (working title). Read more »

These are your hints:

1) Asness is currently a Marvel comic book collector, in addition to his duties at AQR Capital

2) As we know from Scott Patterson’s The Quants, as a teenager in on Long Island, Asness was “obsessed with little besides girls and comic books”

3) Also from The Quants, the following image: “Friday morning at AQR, August 10. Asness glanced pensively at a candy-colored array of Marvel superhero figurines lined up along his east-facing window. Spiderman. Captain America. The Hulk. Iron Man.”

4) In a new profile of Cliff out tomorrow in Bloomberg Markets magazine, the manager sits on his desk flanked by said dolls, in a full-page glossy photo.

Okay, give it your best shot. Read more »