I got this idea from watching TV. For the last few weeks I’ve been visiting the local council estates asking if I can help them do a bunch of stuff, menial stuff like painting murals, counselling rape victims and sitting through wretched urban theatre productions. It’s tough. I bring my wife along with her video camera and she films it. Anyway, I help out the poor people under the guise of just being a Regular Joe. I sort of ask them loaded questions about what they could do with lots of money etc. What would they do if somebody just rocked up with a big fat fucking cheque book. When they tell me I struggle to keep a straight face and not to let the cat out of the bag. I just wanna blurt it out and tell them the truth. You can’t do it like that though. No drama in that.
Yesterday I returned to the projects and sat down with the people running them.
“I have something to tell you,” I said. There were gulps. I could see the excitement in their poor faces. A few hugged each other. “Have you guessed?” I asked. I saw some had but they didn’t want to admit it.
It was time for the big reveal. It was getting emotional.
“I am not really somebody who just wants to help out…” I said leaving it hang for a while. “I am actually…” I was starting to well-up myself and had to swallow hard and blink away some tears, “I’m actually pretending to be a secret millionaire.” I ordered my wife to zoom in on their faces with a predetermined hand signal, to capture their tears and by fuck there were tears. Before I left them — in stunned silence — I actually thanked them, their plight had made me feel better about myself so it wasn’t just a one way street.