Burt Kerr Todd (1925-2006)
In this context, Kiko's House would be remiss to not note the passing of a real-life J. Peterman by the name of Burt Kerr Todd.
Todd, who was 81, had an eye for the deal and made many with the heads of state of mostly small countries in Asia and the Pacific. He counted among his friends the sultan of Brunei and king of Bhutan. (He and wife Susie are shown with some Bhutanese warriors in a 1955 photo.)
Todd piloted his own planes, was an excellent big game hunter and could and did sell anything, including rum, used Rolls Royces, seaweed and bat guano.
He was an indifferent student, but managed to graduate from Oxford. He then trekked across Nepal to Bhutan, becoming the first American to visit that remote Himalayan kingdom, where he befriended the king and became his de facto business advisor.
Todd suggested that the way to economic success was the postage stamp, which Bhutan began regularly issuing in 1962. The stamps were dismissed by serious collectors, but became popular the world over. Some were printed on plastic or silk and a few were "talking stamps," small disks of grooved rubber that could be spun on a phonograph.
One played the Bhutanese national anthem, while another had Todd delivering a (very) short history of the kingdom.