This Christmas, there's no need for layaway. I've hit my hakuna matata! Offers from all over the world pour into my e-mail in-box:
Dear Beloved, I am very sure you can make a lot of difference by replying to my mail, become good friends in and see that with greater power comes greater responsibility. You can make a lot of changes in the life of others with this great offer from the Lord through me to you.
Mrs. Rabia Kabir, a dying widow alone in the world, has chosen me to receive the $10 million she is too sick to spend. She says she knows I am a good Christian and will use the money to aid orphans.
I'm considering her proposition - I've always had a soft spot for widows and orphans - but I shy from hasty action. While Mrs. Rabia Kabir sounds simply lovely, her generosity comes with the obligation of finding an orphan to help. John Fanzi, on the other hand, has e-mailed me about a straight-up inheritance.
Fanzi is an official heir hunter and a consultant to the government on foreign remittance payment. He says that when people die without a will, the Treasury pays him to find a recipient for the estate. I'm due $5 million.
But I don't know. It's not as much as Mrs. Kabir wants to give me.
Then another unsolicited financial boom burst out of cyberspace. This one, so kind and in need of editing:
Greeting dear, Compliment of the day to you, please i don't want this short note to be a burden to you or in any way meet you at the bad mood, I have a proposal for you however is not mandatory. Dearest one I am in a sincere desire of your humble assistance in this regards. Now permit me to ask Can you honestly help me as your sister? What percentage of the total amount in question will be good for you after the money is in your account?
Tender 19-year-old Angela Louis from the Ivory Coast wants to be my sistah and share the $4,500,000 her deceased parents left to her. Furthermore, she is an orphan, whom I am sure Mrs. Kabir wishes me to assist. But I already have a sister.
My hesitancy to commit to any one bid has resulted in a disappointing pattern: the promised funds diminish with each new inquiry. But as usual, when things get twisted, something heavy pulls the kinks out of the string:
Dear Friend, I am working with one of the prime bank here in Burkina Faso, Can you help me repatriate the sum of $15.5 million dollars to your oversea account based on percentage. Can you handle the project? Can I give you this trust? What will be your commission?
Best regards, Mr. Akim Musa
Thrilled and impressed with Mr. Musa's brevity, I replied:
My sweet, you must feel certain that I need a friend in these desperate times. I need Christmas money, too. It is of my good fortunate that you have found me. You are captaining my incoming ship.
Of course I would ask 150%, but I know you will object. I will settle for 105%. Naturally, I take your trust. Thank you for it more than ever. As for handling the project, it really depends on if it's hot or sticky. I don't touch messy stuff.
If you could send one of your children to care for me in my old age, it is necessary. And send a goat. I have always wanted one.
I have yet to hear back from Akim. I fear the request for the goat may have killed the deal.
Lucy Adams is the author of Tuck Your Skirt in Your Panties and Run. She lives in Thomson. E-mail Lucy at firstname.lastname@example.org and visit her Web site, www.IfMama.com.