Spam, Spam, Spam
by Mike Bell
I love my Monty Python introductions. ‘Spam’ was another of their ‘hit’ songs, like ‘I’m a lumberjack and I’m OK’ and it is also the name of a folder in my email account. As a doddering pensioner, I must admit to being scared of catching one of these viruses that infect computers from time to time. At my age it could make my hard drive go all soft and floppy. I foolishly opened an intriguing message once and was rewarded with the Blue Screen of Death, so I’ve steered clear of them, till now.
I took my car for a service and because the concept of booking an agreed time for the aforesaid is alien to Thai thinking, the garage provided a waiting room. It had three computers with Internet access. This was my chance to open all the suspect packages in my spam folder without causing MY computer to blow up. So I did.
A whole new world opened before my eyes. For a start I was rich beyond my wildest dreams. Complete strangers had chosen me to help them smuggle vast fortunes out of Africa. Lotteries I didn’t remember entering assured me I’d won first prize of millions – not baht but dollars. All I had to do was provide my bank account name and number for the money to come rolling in.
Some of the people who had written to me sounded so exotic as to be almost untrue! A Mrs Susan Shabanga offered me a share of 11.5 million $! The recently widowed Susan Dube of Harare, Zimbabwe went one better at 12.5. I rejected these two as untrustworthy as both suggested they had come by the money in dubious fashion.
Far more interesting and worthy of my help was Daniel Smith Intiwar. He had had a thrilling life in America since leaving Africa. His (white adoptive?) father Smith had amassed a huge fortune and transferred it to Africa with a view to returning. Unfortunately he died before the final details had been sorted. A wicked uncle has got wind of the money which is why I am urged to act quickly.
I know the good people of Issan are desperate for me to start doling out my new fortune, but I won’t be rushed. I am not a greedy person and do not propose to accept all of the fortunes on offer to me: I need only one.
I am a real sucker for Royalty so when Princess Saral Al almoudi appealed for my help, I wrote back immediately and received in return the name of her lawyer in Madrid, complete with email address: firstname.lastname@example.org. Unfortunately my Skype credit has run out over a mix-up using Paypal so I can’t ring him. She was a bit vague about how much is mine when the deal goes through: ‘Finally let me reiterate here that honesty is very important in life therefore I will like to have a strong assurance from your side that you will not sit on this fund when it finally gets to your custody. Upon my receipt of your assurance I will inform you of your entitlement for participating in this business accordingly. I await your urgent compliance.’ I think I detect she doesn’t altogether trust me once the money is in my Bangkok bank account.
So I turn to the last name on my shortlist: Karen Roland. This lady has only weeks to live; she is in a hospital in the Netherlands suffering from Cancer and Pneumonia. She has lost the ability to speak but has managed to compose an email to me asking me to take charge of $5.5 million but only for distributions to charities of my choice. She is a born-again Christian and signs herself:
Yours in Christ,
Mrs. Karen Ronald.
After top-level discussions with my wife, we are going to write back to Mrs Ronald and asking her to approve the following list of charities:
SBBA – The Sick Buffalos of Buriram Association,
CIRD – The Confederation of Issan Rice Driers,
BECPS – Breast Enhancement Confederation of Pattaya Surgeons,
S6LGCE – this last one doesn’t exist yet and I’ve snuck it in without her indoors knowing; The Soi 6 Lost Girls Charitable Events; Chairman, Treasurer and Sole Member, Mike Bell.