Schwartz and Feldman, partners in the garment industry, had just suffered through their worst season ever. Eight thousand madras sports coats were hanging on the rack unsold, and bankruptcy was looming closer each day.
Out of the blue, in walked a buyer from Australia. He began, "You boys wouldn't happen to have any madras sports coats, would you? I've been looking for them everywhere."
Schwartz said there MIGHT be a few left, and soon a deal was made whereby the eight thousand jackets would be shipped to Australia at a handsome profit.
"There is one thing though," said the Australian buyer. "For an order this large, I'll have to get a confirmation from my home office. I don't anticipate any problem, and unless I send you a telegram by this Friday, the deal goes through as planned."
Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday passed slowly, with the partners nervously waiting to see if the Australian would change his mind. Friday morning went by without incident. Schwartz and Feldman were closing up shop when, at five minutes to five, there was a knock on the door: "Telegram!"
The partners froze. Trembling, Feldman grabbed the telegram and opened it.
Suddenly, his face lit up. "Schwartz, GREAT NEWS! Your brother died!"