Thursday, April 17, 2008

$14 Million And A Doodle Disguise

Quiz time! Quick!:

If you won $14 million in the lottery, what is the first thing you would do?
  1. Quit your job

  2. Buy a new car

  3. Go to Disney World

  4. Draw a beard on your face with a marker before your press conference

Normally, if you had answered '4', I'd say you were a moron. But in this case, sadly, you wouldn't be a moron. No, you'd just be 51-year old Michael Perez of Queens, NY. (If you answered '3', you must have misunderstood the question to read "What is the second thing you would do after winning the lottery.")

Mr. Perez had taken some of his income-tax refund (I'm guessing that "some" = "more than half") and bought lottery tickets. All six of his numbers hit and he won $14 million bucks, of which he netted just barely over $5 million after taxes. (That's a freaking rip-off if there ever was one.) He was presented with a gigantic fake check at a meaningless prize presentation ceremony. He accepted the enormous fake check right after he drew a beard and moustache on his face with a marker to conceal his identity. Wait. What?

Apparently, Mr. Perez lives in a less-than-safe area of the Bronx. (Translation: It's only yours until someone steals it.) He called it "crime-ridden" and wanted to remain unrecognized so that "thieves couldn't prey on him and his Mom." Just in case the drawn on goatee wasn't enough, Mr. Perez took the added precaution of wearing a hat and sunglasses (which one might have thought would have been enough of a disguise without sporting a Magic Marker beard.)

Mr. Perez said that he wants to take care of all of his debts. Then he added, "But before I do anything serious, I've got to go to Disney World." He also said that he'd like to move his Mom out of the "crime-ridden Bronx", but he doubted that she would go because of all of the family and friends she has in the "crime-ridden Bronx". (He might be surprised. And I really hope he is. Get out of there, woman! Your son just won five mil! Pack it up!)

Well, I guess I'm glad that he didn't consider drawing on a beard to be "serious". I'm a little concerned he thought it was necessary, but glad it wasn't "anything serious".

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