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The mortgage mole

Feeling the heat

It took around seven hours to recover from that buffet brunch at the Corrinado (Mole, October 27) and Mole couldn&#39t help but chuckle at the location. It seems the Corrinado is also home to Billy Wilder&#39s 1959 cinematic classic Some Like It Hot. The film, which stars Marilyn Monroe as Sugar Kane Kowalczyk, Tony Curtis as Joe (Josephine) Junior and Jack Lemmon as Jerry (Daphne), is about two musicians who witness a mob hit and flee the state in an all-female band disguised as women. Now, Mole&#39s not one to delve into personal affairs but made a note to ask Michael (Michelle) Bolton and Stephen (Stephanie) Sandiford if they had a reason for choosing the venue other than the food.

Food for thought

Craig S Focardi. Remember that name. Craig is a consultant for US firm Tower Group and is working with UK past master Frank Eve on research into wholesale lending via the web. Craig, who is one of the most interesting market experts Mole has met and ranks alongside John Malone and Ray Boulger for wisdom and depth, invited a famished UK contingent to dinner one evening – but then couldn&#39t pay. He&#39s heading to the UK soon. You have been warned. So it was an early night for us, pausing only for GMAC-RFC&#39s annual reception at what is allegedly America&#39s largest &#39cultural park&#39.

Al together now

And so it came to pass that on Monday morning, Mole and the rest of the bleary-eyed UK contingent were sitting patiently in the conference hall waiting for proceedings to begin. After the national anthem and the drumming in of the &#39Proud to be a mortgage banker&#39 message (if only the Yanks had the same problem with Bs as Jonathan Ross has with Rs) it was on to the main event – Al Gore vs Bob Dole. This was a rare insight into the workings of US government and, of course, nothing whatsoever to do with mortgages. All credit to Gore though, whose opening line had to be one of the best ever. “Hi, my name is Al Gore. I used to be the next president of the United States. Well, what are you going to do? You win some, you lose some – and then there&#39s that third category.”

Nips

A hard day at the conference really builds the appetite. Hooters, which obviously refers to owl noises, is home to some of America&#39s finest home grown birds – chickens that is – and a tasty sauce. “The only reason we come to Hooters is for the grub,” an unconvincing Ron Howell proclaimed. “It&#39s that all-American experience and good brain food for the conference.”

The night was still young though and so on it was to party with those nice folk from First American, owners of First Title in the UK. With a free bar and even more food, Mole and cohorts couldn&#39t refuse. Tipple of the night? Louis XIII brandy. With a street value of $125 a shot, Mole and Co could have been landed with a bill for $2,250 if it weren&#39t for First Am. Thanks Howard.

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