The other day, I was reading about a couple in New Zealand who owned a gas station. They went to their bank to get a draft for 6 thousand dollars for one thing or another, but the bank made a small mistake. It gave them a draft for 6 million dollars. Now, I would imagine that the couple had only a few hours to make a momentous decision. Return the draft to their bank and point out their mistake, or take the money and RUN!
They ran. And I imagine unless they have spent years planning for such an unlikely event, or possess the most incredible luck in the history of man, they will be tracked down and forced to return the money. And I thought about what I would do in the same situation, except it hurt my head too much and I drifted into another mode that I sometimes settle into really late at night. It's pure fantasy, but it keeps a sleepy mind occupied until the sandman kabongs him.
What different ways could I come into big money without working for it? I've come up with three ways. The first two are plausible for everyone, but the third is pure "Rob's tired mind at work in the land of the absurd". But I'll share it with you anyway. Let me lay this out:
Inheritance: For many people, this is a real avenue to come into money without too much trouble. Well, maybe a little work. You've got to be nice to relatives you loathe and maybe you have to do some shameless whoring, but for the most part, it's easy. Sadly, this isn't a possibility for me. My parents have little money, and my chance for marrying into it were dashed the second I saw Jan's parent's house. In fact, the only person I know who inherited anything was the guy across the street who got his aunt's "old lady car" when she passed.
Lottery: A few of us do strike it big time playing the lottery. I'm not a real gambler, but I'll generally pick up a ticket once per week, either on the state Lotto or one of the national lotteries. I have no illusions of winning, and in fact, I'm carrying around a couple in my wallet that I haven't checked for weeks. I usually buy a state lotto ticket, because the payoffs are not humongous. I can live with 5 million dollars or so, and besides, when you don't win super large jackpots, you aren't going to have all the hassles and tragedies that winning ungodly sums of money often entail. At least that's the way I think.
Supernatural Powers: Also known as "magic". Unless I find an alternative universe where Al Gore became president and komodo dragons have PhD's, this method of money gathering would be patently impossible. In this scenario, I wake up one morning and find I have the ability to teleport "things". And the first "thing" I want to teleport is a ten dollar bill. So, on the first day, I teleport a ten dollar bill from every cash register at every retail establishment in my town to my front room. Then I wait a few days to see if anything happens. Only then do I become bolder. I teleport tens from every cash register in the county, and then my federal district, then the state, then two states, then .... then ... then .... Bwahahahahaha! My entire house is filled with ten dollar bills!
But then, the rational side of my fantasy mind takes over. How do I use this money? Do I take it to the bank every day and deposit it? No, they'd get wise to me after a couple of times and call the cops. How about money laundering? How do I find a money launderer? Are they listed in the Yellow Pages? How much do they charge? Thirty percent? Fifty percent? And what if they get greedy and want a piece of the action? How will I protect my secret and my turf? Will they torture me or hold my family hostage? Will I have to go all Keyser Soze on them? Oh Shit! How did I get myself into this fucking mess?
And then ... my fantasy crumbles into a million tiny fragments ... and I go buy a Lotto ticket.