As some of you will know, whilst launching a new blogging project recently I had cause to publish an email address of mine online. Only a Yahoo webmail account but still one that I use frequently.
I didn’t think anything of it to tell you the truth. I doubt it was online for more than a day or two.
But by God have I been deluged with spam mail.
Nothing about Viagra or sex techniques to make my woman “cry like a baby with ecstasy as I keep going all night without stopping” – well, I could write a book about that myself, couldn’t I?
Just loads and load of emails from various gentlemen in Burkina Faso who, it seems, wish to enlist my aid in helping them out of a rather sticky financial quandary. They’ve obviously heard that I‘m a financial whizz and regularly move immense sums of money into and out of my bank accounts without rousing any kind of suspicion whatsoever.
Take Dr. Alim Hadi for example. The poor man is the trustee of a monetary estate worth $9 million. He’d like to release the money to me as it seems I am the next of kin to his client who died in a plane crash with all of his family in July 2000. The account has lain dormant since then with nobody coming to claim the money. Nobody at all. The money has just sat there all this time. Unmolested. Wow.
Apparently I am entitled to 40% of the above sum which he will happily see transferred into my account provided I supply him with all of the necessary banking details. Of course I must keep this all top secret. And delete the email if I am not interested. Confidentiality is very important. As a high roller like myself fully understands.
I think what insults me the most (though of course none of this is particularly personal) is the assumption that I’d be stupid enough to fall for it. I mean please. Next of kin to a previously unknown African branch of the family?
Mind you my granddad did spend time in Durban during the war so it’s quite possible he got up to some naughties with an African beauty of big bosomed persuasion whilst on shore leave...
The thing is Dr. Hadi, you’re not even trying. Your attempts to screw me are clichéd and formulaic. At least be a little more inventive. A little more theatrical.
I want to see photographs of the crash site. I want to see mortuary pictures of my long lost relative laid out on the slab (something for the family album). I want a lock of hair or a fingernail – hell, the whole finger if possible (who’s going to notice its absence?) – something I can get DNA tested. And I want paperwork. A letter from my great granny perhaps talking wistfully of her elicit liaison with the late denizen of Ouagadougou and exhorting him to one day get in touch with the UK branch of his family should he ever fall onto hard times but especially should he fall onto good.
And most of all I want a huge, obsessively detailed family tree laid out on parchment and an episode of “Who Do You Think You Are?” reserved for my very public reconciliation with my long lost African brothers – something in the style of Roots would be fine.
Give me all that and you can have my sodding bank account details with absolute pleasure. And, if I really must, I suppose I’ll accept my 40% cut of the $9 million. After all it’s what my cousin, Kunte Kinte, would have wanted.
*Sigh* Global families. Don’t you just love ‘em?
P.S. Can I just say that I am not available for babysitting?