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Rodd Jokre

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Third World Prosperity… …Or So
By Rodd Jokre
Thursday, November 20, 2003

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Thought up: 11.8.03 – 10:04pm
Written: 11.11.03 - 5:47 pm

This weekend I sat out on my front porch talking to one of my good friends about how we have it so good in this life. We’ve always got food on our tables, shelter from the elements, and taxes that are so fun to pay. There are a lot of people in this world that don’t have these amazing luxuries. There are people that can’t get a decent meal, and can’t have a roof overhead made from anything more than some bushes and leaves, and that’s not fair. I guess that’s why they have so many agencies that feed the hungry and the week in different areas of the world. I think these agencies are doing a very nice thing for people. It would be nice to see some of it actually pay off though. I always see the downside to what has happened by nobody donating money, but clearly SOMEONE has to be giving money to these organizations, or else they’re not doing the job that they’re advertising! I don’t know how many years I’ve watched these ads on television, but NONE of them have ever shown me what happens when you DO actually donate to a kiddo. I mean, granted, you’re only giving up like $0.72 per day, but that will obviously help out the child to get nourishment. How about the celebrities of the world get together a group and hit the road collection $ to save the children. I know there’re a lot of sick kids in the world, but there are also a lot of wealthy celebrities, and what better way to promote oneself than to be helping children! I’m gonna go out on a limb here and say that if everyone in the celebrity world, making a respectable amount of money ($100,000.00 or more) would give up 72 cents per day to help people around the world, we all sleep a little better! They could even take it out per paycheck, much like the taxes and medical, and retirement and alimony, and student loans, and more taxes that come out of my check each month before I can even deposit the $24.63!
I know, I don’t make nearly the amount that some big name celebrities make, but I do alright I think. I’m pretty sure that with the $24.63 per month I could knock of $21.60 more to feed a lil’ guy that has nothing with no problems. I really enjoy top ramen, and I think I could live off it for a while. But this is where the downside comes in. If you START to donate to this cause, you can’t quit. It’d be like just dumping a kid on the side of the road after a trip to the ice cream parlor and telling him to go find a new home. He’d have to go out on the market again searching for a new place to live. I can imagine my lil’ guy hanging out on some side street in a 3rd world country with a sandwich sign promoting that he’s back on the market of donations. That’s just not very cool I don’t think. So I’m fairly certain that it’d be better for both of us for me to find a better job. Me with a better job means that I could help him out with that $21.60 without worries, and it’s force me to stop eating top ramen every meal! So, in all actuality, HE’D be the one helping ME out! So I think a BETTER way to attack this would be to have a place in these 3rd world countries where kids could come to, online, in books, whatever where they could see prospective sponsors to them. This would alleviate a lot of the hassle that goes into finding a child in an area that you want. The child would be the one selecting YOU! This way, I guarantee every child on earth would have a sponsor, and everyone would be $21.60 poorer, but it’s for a good cause! To make the process even more streamline, the bill could come in the mail each month with the return address of the city sewage system or something. That way people would HAVE to pay it, because who wants their sewers backed up? Nope, not me! Kids would be happy, healthy, and warm all around the world, and sponsors would be glad to know that they’re really doing a worthwhile thing!
I’m sure, however, that there would be drawbacks. I would probably start to get really attached to my newly adopted child and want him to come to live with me in America once he was done sponsoring me, and forcing me into getting a better job, which would, in turn, get me a bigger house in which my buddy could come and live. Granted, once he came over to live with me, he’d have to get a job, but that’d be no problem since I had already paid for his schooling. But I assume this is the point where his family would get angry with me for taking their son away from them. They’d know that I was only trying to help, but would still want to be with their child. I’d receive several weeks, and possibly months of hate mail before they realized that it might be a fun adventure for the lil’ fella to come and live with me. He’d get a job at my firm, and we’d become successful business partners. I’d show him around the city, introduce him to all of my friends, and show him how to untwist Oreos.
Now, I’m not sure how long he’ll live with me. I imagine for the first few years he’s here, at least. Who knows, maybe I’d even get married and he’d still be hanging out at my house, but that’s no big deal. The Missus and I wouldn’t care, “he’s family.” I’d say, and that’d be that. Until I’m sure he’d want to bring his parents over to the house to live because they lived in a bad part of the world, and I’m not one to go against family, so I’d agree with him, and his entire family would come to live in the house. I’m certain that I could have a really good time with them all. We have a lot of picnics and barbeques and whatnot. We’d play lawn darts, croquet, and Frisbee a lot. However, as wives often times are, she’d get fed up with my friends, and eventually give me the ultimatum: they go or I go! I assume I’d miss her a lot, but that’s the way it goes. I mean, it’s not like she’s blood or something like my son… …and his mother and father and brothers and sisters from some far off foreign land!
I can’t say that I can find a downside to this except for the fact that I’ve got a fairly soft heart. I’d probably start whining a lot to my new family, and they’d eventually get sick of hearing me sob like a helpless boob. I’d likely call in sick to work one too many times and the boss man would tell me to take a hike. I’d be out of a job, and a wife, and my new son would have to take care of me for a while, as I’d likely be on a drunken binge. He’d send me to alcohol counseling, and I’d run off because I couldn’t cut it there, and I’d find myself running around the nation working odd jobs to pay for my drinking, writing back to my boy and his family in my house from time to time, and city to city until eventually I’d find myself in Central America broke as a joke. I’d wake up one day, and look at the beard on my face, the holes in my shoes, and the dirt on my clothes and think how I got where I was. It would all be that way because I was being nice to someone; someone in a third-world country that didn’t have anything to eat or anywhere to sleep, much like myself, who would, in turn, get on the same plan and find myself a sponsor. Boy would that sponsor be surprised when he’d find out that I wasn’t really a starving 9 year old in Nicaragua! But I wouldn’t tell him until he bought me a plane ticket back to America (I know, it’d take a year or 2, but we’re fast-forwarding) and then when he’d come to pick me up from the airport, to avoid embarrassment, I’d dress up like a cow and leisurely walk out of the airport… “Moo,” I’d say a time or 2 to avoid uncloaking…

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Reviewed by Carmen Ruggero 11/21/2003
I agree with Bonita and Scott. You need paragraph breaks and some light cleaning up. Othwise a good piece. Keep it up!

Reviewed by Bonita Quesinberry 11/20/2003
Whew! I am sooo glad this turned out to be satire, Rodd. Very good, except as an editor I was frustrated by the lack of proper paragraph breaks, too many the's and that's. A bit of tweaking here and there and you will have a fine piece of satire worthy of publishing. ~~Bonnie Q
Reviewed by Scott Zachary 11/20/2003
That was hilarious, Rodd. I love your unusual, quirky perspective on things. I almost didn't read your piece because there were no paragraph breaks, but I'm glad I did anyway.

Thanks for the pleasure,

Reviewed by Tinka Boukes 11/20/2003
Fine write Rodd!!

Love Tinka
Reviewed by C.J. Park 11/20/2003
Wow - you really sat down and thought this one through completely, didn't you? I think my Mom sponsored some kind in Central America for a while, but he never came to live with us.

B-) C.J.
Reviewed by Jerry Bolton 11/20/2003
You had me almost ready to zip on down here and fire off a "what-the-hell-you-talking-bout-if-the-skuzzballs-that-run-those-countries-didn't-steal-all-their-money-the-kid-would-have-some-food." Then I kept reading. This is great stuff. A satire on the beggers of television. Great! Loved it.

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