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A Man of a Few More Words - by Swan Morrison


I firmly believe that those of us who have been fortunate enough to attain any degree of affluence should have no hesitation in unstintingly giving to charitable causes. I had always taken this line, and had frequently given, whenever asked, with little thought about my donation.

It had come to my attention in recent years, however, that requests for a straightforward donation to a charity had become less frequent. More often, an individual had committed to undertake a specific task, and would be seeking sponsorship for its completion. The London Marathon was a fine case in point. Certainly, anyone who can walk twenty-six miles through London in the mid-summer heat, even if not dressed as a large furry animal, is welcome to my money for his or her cause.

Other sponsored tasks, however, gave me cause to reflect. I sponsored a work colleague who was planning to walk the Great Wall of China, and then another who was planning to visit the great Aztec and Inca monuments of South America. I must make it clear that, in both cases, all the donated money went to the nominated charities, and the individuals concerned paid their own expenses. Nevertheless, they were clearly being sponsored for having a good time and doing what they would have done anyway, without sponsorship. This realisation led to two major changes in my charitable donation strategy.

The first was that I now only sponsor those who are doing something that they do not want to do. There is, therefore, an element of sacrifice involved. This caused requests for sponsorship to significantly reduce initially, until friends and colleagues began to think it through. I am now proud to have sponsored George in Finance for having his mother-in-law stay for a week. Janice in Sales has raised nearly two hundred pounds for Great Ormond Street by regularly visiting her old and disabled, though cantankerous and vitriolic, aunt. Also, Mavis in Despatch has gained nearly one thousand pounds for the National Heart Foundation by agreeing to have sex with her, rather boring but nevertheless kindly, husband at least once every two months.

The second change is my own venture into sponsored activities for charity. I was delighted to raise nearly five hundred pounds from my sponsored affair with Sally from the Stationary Department. Our target of intercourse twenty-five times in a week was challenging, but thoughts of the desperate need of earthquake victims in Asia drove us onwards to success. My recent sponsored tour of the Greek islands was also extremely lucrative for Oxfam, especially with the bonus of ten pence from each sponsor for every whole bottle of Retzina consumed.

I am painfully aware, however, that the above contributions are but a drop in the ocean compared to the massive need for humanitarian funding. This is why I am now writing to young actresses, alcohol manufacturers and drug suppliers, worldwide, to gain support for my proposed, sponsored ‘sexdrugsandboozeathon’. It is undoubtedly an ambitious target to have sexual intercourse with a constant stream of the world’s most desirable women whilst consuming prodigious quantities of alcohol and drugs. A simple viewing of any evening news programme, however, underlines the ubiquitousness of poverty and suffering. I believe, therefore, that this is the very least I can do.