You're at a restaurant with friends. A television is on in the corner and in accordance with that golden law of nature, at least one of your party is staring intently at it. The conversation among the other members of your group continues unabated until the TV watcher lets slip a sigh of disappointment. In that moment, you learn who among your chums has filled out an NCAA bracket because everyone turns toward the big screen. Cheers and sobs soon follow: The agony and the ecstasy of March Madness is on full display.
For many fans, there's a certain relief—catharsis—in being wrong. But for John Swansburg, Slate
's editorial director, there has been no reprieve. His basketball bracket is perfect at 16 for 16, and now he's holding Warren Buffett hostage in an uproariously funny
note he penned.
"You have publicly stated that if a contestant in your $1 billion bracket challenge makes it to the final four with an intact bracket, you'll buy them out of the deal, perhaps to the tune of $100 million. That's the kind of savvy play that I'd expect from the man who went long on Dairy Queen. At this early stage of the tournament, I'm willing to offer you the chance to buy my perfect bracket for $10 million. This is a one-time offer, and it's exploding—I need to hear back from you by 2 p.m. ET, or it's off the table. The clock is ticking, and a lot of your money is at stake," Swansburg wrote.
"If I'm you, I'm sitting in Omaha thinking, How do I get this Swansburg fellow out of my silver hair, and fast?
According to the article, Swansburg is one of 18,741 people who have thus far drawn perfect picks for their NCAA brackets on ESPN.com. That's out of a total of 11 million brackets that have been filled out in total, or .17 percent of entrants.