Greek dog food and a Nigerian inheritance
Given the deluge of mail I receive in my professional capacity at the institution that is The Sonoma Index-Tribune - be it actual, virtual or otherwise - I'm frequently at a loss as to how to answer it all and still make my weekly deadline.
After years on this beat (technically I'm the in-house bon vivant, though no one confirms or denies this to my face), it finally occurred to me that I could make my deadline and reply to my correspondence by simply doing it here, on the paper's dime.
Clearly, I'm a genius. Why Sonoma Valley High School has yet to grant me an honorary diploma is beyond comprehension (which I spelled all by myself without spell-check, by the way - or "btw" as we of sophomore level educations might say). Nvrthls, I'm going to attempt to kill two birds with one stone, or at least get two birds stoned as Brit rocker Ian Billings might say. Ahem.
Is "Daedalus Howell" your real name or did you steal it from a brand of Greek dog food?
- Sleepless in Sonoma
Dear Sleepless - (If that is indeed your real name) "Daedalus Howell" is my legal name but not my original name. That was Alpolis Purinas, which actually is Greek for "dog food" and a painful nightmare from which I thought I'd awoken. Apparently, not - so, yeah, thanks for bringing it up.
Dear DH: How did you end up in Sonoma? - Curious N. Curiouser
Curious you should ask (couldn't resist). Like many who "end up" in Sonoma, I got lost on the way to Napa. Also, my palm reader says I'm cursed. (But what does it know? It's just an iPhone app). And I fell in love. (Sigh.) Then I got over myself and realized that if I was ever going to make it as a small-time media mogul I'd have to start small and stay small.
I immediately recognized the limited opportunities and resources surrounding me and knew that I was home - or, at any rate, I wasn't going anywhere anytime soon and had to make the least of it. The rest, as they say, is mystery.
Dear Sir: I am a diplomatic attache and in-law to the late President, General Sanni Abacha of Nigeria. Amata, his first born, son is facing difficulty obtaining his inheritance and I seek your assistance us in securing some funds, abroad for safe keeping. We are willing to offer you 15 percent of the funds after the transaction for your co-operation. All I need from you is an assurance in the form of a small deposit of several thousand dollar.
Be rest assured that there is no risk involved since I have taken care of everything. Awaiting with interest. Sincerely, Farouk Bakoh.
Farouk - Dude, I'm in. You had me at "Nigeria." I've got several similar deals going with Nigerian diplomats and am totally stoked to have another. Man, I tell ya, when these babies payoff, I might just buy Nigeria a big fat present to say, "Thanks!" How 'bout a little piece of Wine Country we call "Glen Ellen?" Yours. Done. Okay, so where do I send the check? Do you take PayPal? Let's do this. Thanks for thinking of me (sorry it took so long to reply!) - DH
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Daedalus Howell replies to reader comments and questions on the third Friday of the month if the date is a prime number, which was featured in a Beatles song. Otherwise, he can be reached at the Future Media Research Lab, FMRL.com.