Have you ever met someone who lied about being rich?
Oh my fuck, I have just the perfect answer for this question!
In my years of travelling across the length and breadth of this country, I have certainly met a few characters. People who leave me flabbergasted with their bullshit. People who make me desperate for Armageddon. And some, who were just so out of hand, that I started to believe that apocalypse would actually be a mercy.
Yes, this person, this girl who was somehow my friend in fifth grade, made me give up on our species. BNBR is stopping me from saying what I really think of her. She was a backstabbing, rumour-generating, dumb as hell idiot, to say the least. Her only redeemable attribute was her tendency to spin golden yarns, stories that were so outlandish that they were worth a Nebula.
The school I studied my fifth and sixth grades in was a highly reputed slightly elite institution of Chennai. My peers were well-off, even loaded, and the grandnephew of the chairman of the school trust was my friend. The kids used to vacation in Washington and Nepal and the UK, while there was me, whose only glimpse of a foreign land was the small stretch of road beyond the Wagah Border. Yet, somehow, I - with my tales of snakes and jungles and fighter planes - fit in with this crowd.
Disclaimer : None of the facts below are verified. Kindly take them with four hundred and twenty sacks of iodised sodium chloride.
"My mother is the manager of the Le Royal Meridien. I have gone there many times."
Maybe. The Le Royal Meridien is this really luxurious 5 -star hotel in Chennai. This might be true.
"I live in this gigantic bungalow in Mylapore. The plot is seven acres big. My room occupies two entire floors. Everything in my home is automatic. I have special buttons beneath my bed. The first one calls thirteen robotic servants to my room who would bathe me, braid my hair, make my face up, give me facials and pedicures and manicures, and cook this special buffet breakfast spread for me every morning. The second button would cause an oculus above my bed to open, which would shower me with teddy bears every evening after coming back from school. The third button would cause a tunnel to open up beneath my bed. The tunnel leads to Hannah Montana's bedroom, who is my friend."
Damn mate, a seven acre large futuristic plot in the one of the costliest areas of Chennai would be rather noticeable, wouldn't it? And why the fuck were you studying here instead of some elite residential school at Ooty? And holy fucking hell, please stop talking about Hannah Montana. She hadn't seen a single episode of it, believe me. She must have seen Miley's face somewhere and fixated upon it. Tell me guys, can there exist a Hannah Montana fan who didn't know that Hannah is actually Miley? She didn't even know the title track for fuck's sake!
Pffft. A ten year old doesn't get facials or pedicures. Do you even know how many times I had glowered in envy at my mum as she leaned back in her chair with the delicious smelling masks upon her face? And how many times she had shot me down from the age of seven, telling me that I don't need to get professional treatments till I had stopped growing?
What the fuck happened to those teddy bears after the shower?
"My father has his own private fighter jet. He takes me with him whenever he flies to Los Angeles. The plane has a bathtub and everything. We take off from the base near Chromepet, of course."
A fighter jet with a bathtub, nice! What next, a Su-30 MKIII with a jacuzzi and a spa?
For fuck's sake!
I won't ever forget the expression on her face when I started asking her about the model of her jet.
"What do you know about jets?"
"Not much, I am afraid. My father's in the IAF. I only know whatever he tells me. Call me the next time you fly. I live in that base."
She avoided talking to me after that.
We got so tired of her shit in sixth grade that when the members of the Literary Club (she was in Eco) had to perform a play, our play was about a girl who boasted and lied and betrayed people, and how everything came back to bite her in the arse.
Guess who was the director cum screenplay writer?
*Name hidden to protect identity.
This is just 10% of what she told us all.
Specimens, I swear!
YES. But his lie was the complete opposite of what most people are thinking.
I have an old childhood friend, let's call him Bill, who I remain friends with to this day and he always wanted to be a doctor. He was wicked smart but got burnt out half way through USC med school... and dropped out. Two years of private med school and not even earning a doctorate will wreak havoc on your debt and your financal future.
He was oddly calm at the time, and no his parents were not rich and yes he took out a loan for school. I kept asking him if he needed help with money or anything but he kept telling me that he did not. Everything about the way he lived told me he was dirt poor. He drove a 2001 Chrysler (this was 2010) and rented a 2-bed apartment with a roommate.
Here's when things got odd. Once when a groups of us went out to the bar he had settled all of our tabs. Remember this was right after he dropped out and had 4 years of undergrad + 2 years of med school in student loans. I pulled him aside and asked him how the hell he could afford this, I had actually planned on paying for him that night. He just said he enjoyed spending money on friends more than on himself. I asked him if he was a drug dealer.. no he was not a drug dealer.
After a night out at the club we had brought a few girls over to his place and were hanging out. I wanted to check my amazon and eBay accounts so I asked him if I could use his computer in his room. I open it up and Boom! It was his Schwab Brokerage account. I had never seen so many freaking numbers!! I won't say how much it was and it wasn't anything crazy, but it was enough for an average 65 year old to retire on.
Bill walks in and sees what's on the screen and smiles into a big "aw shucks shit-eating grin". I again ask him if he's a drug dealer, he laughs and tells me no. And he tells me his story:
During college he started playing Poker at Commerce Casino, a large casino a few miles from USC. He discovered he wasn't just good, but Really good at Poker.
He didn't do it because he enjoyed gambling, he did it because he realized he could make money.. a lot of money.. really fast. He used his winnings to bankroll the next level of gambling... day trading, and well.. made a small fortune. He admitted that he was trying to keep his bread and butter a secret because he was actually kind of embarrassed to give up becoming a doctor to just make money.
My buddy eventually found a day job but to this day I don't tell anyone that he's filthy rich and neither does he.
Absolutely. One of the most tall-tale was one of my classmate. When I was in secondary school, there was this girl who brag the most ridiculous things, such as "Her parents were high CEOS and she had a big house and maids everyday", and "She owes 10 dogs etc and her allowance was $1000 a day."
Her most ridiculous tales was "My parents own 5 cars and one is silver plated and another is covered in gold. The gold plated one is so exclusive and rare. It can only be rode out AT NIGHT because of reflectives." Freaking heck, what is dumb car for..catching ghosts is it... I remember it being so ridiculous and didnt believe a single word she said. Obviously she was another lying for attention.
I split class in the next year and soon truth was revealed. One day after a award ceremony, where parents came to collect their child, her dad came. She was absolutely mortified to meet anyone eyes, while sitting in the old rickety lorry. Her high-end Sephora bought makeups were revealed to be dollar store products.
Thank you for the A2A.
I don't think they lied about being "rich," but he used to have (or take his father's?) money (he'd say, "enjoy it now, it won't last long") and waste it by taking me out to eat at expensive restaurants and things. (I'm not impressed by money)
One night, he took me to a restaurant and ordered lobster. If you aren't familiar with it, it can cost up to 6 times more at a restaurant than it would if you just cooked it at home. I grew up on lobster, it was my first solid food. So, like most good New Englander's, I know how to eat lobster. ALL of it. Some restaurants actually have the "instructions" for eating the "New England" way printed on their placemats.
So, we are eating dinner, and he's talking about all this money he has (he lived in the worst part of town, by the way). I didn't mind where he lived, I wasn't impressed by the money, and I was getting annoyed that he even managed to ruin a lobster dinner for me, which I thought was impossible.
I was eating as slowly as he was, watching how much he "knew" about eating it, because I might not have had money, but I was an expert at this. So, we ate the meat from the claws. I was waiting for him to proceed, because most consider the tail the best part, especially if you get a male lobster, because the tails are HUGE. (Female lobsters have huge claws).
After a few minutes, I asked, "Aren't you going to eat the tail?" and he replied, "No way, I only eat the claws." Well, that pushed me right up to my "apathetic" level, and I said, "Well, if you aren't, I am." I grabbed his lobster and proceeded to eat the heck out of both of them.
Even if he had money, he hadn't learned the basics with me. I didn't expect lobster, I never refuse lobster, but gosh darn, know how to eat it! lol
I met my partners dad before I met my partner. He told everyone that his son would love me.
So one night I was outside having a smoke when he joined me. My son would love you and you would love him. He's a millionaire and lives in a big private gated house with a huge tree lined driveway.
The only thing he got right was the love bit. When I met his son, I forgot the fact he's supposed to be a millionaire. Which is just as well, being as its not true. We did buy a house with a tree lined driveway and private gated access to the grounds. It was then that I remembered what his dad said.
I keep on waiting for him to fess up and pull a couple of million out of his arse pocket to send me shopping.
In the meantime I will have to make do that he just cleared out his bank account and gave me his last few grand to make sure I had enough to spoil my kids at Christmas.
I didn't get a rich man but I did get a good man. That'll do!
"Ivo, for several weeks now, Dr. Raubal did not come. Do you know how he is doing?" Our Catholic university parish adminstrator had seen me and him coming close recently, this is why she asked me.
"Well, perhaps this has something to do with a conversation we had."
Dr. Raubal was a local businessman in his fifties, who regularly attended service there because he wanted to give stipendia to students as a first step to set up a foundation. He was in talks with the parishioner, with university authorities, and various students about candidates, and in general wanted to learn more about today's students and their problems and aspirations. With his dark-brown coat and his military hair cut, his face expression settled, calm, and always serious he could have passed as a monk. He was kind, attentive, a careful listener, did avoid to talk about himself. His manners were impeccable and dignified. After service and the usual chit-chat, he gave me a lift back into town. I never gossip, so I was not surprised he was opening up and started to talk about his business ventures while driving.
"With some capital, investment in shares and bonds is not really hard. 20% annual is a reasonable goal that I met consistently, and the whole thing does not take more time than half an hour daily."
On another trip back, he told me he owns two shopping malls in Luxemburg and Munich, together with his son. An economist by training, he also started postgraduate seminars about real estate at the University of Munich.
In the internet, I indeed found a real estate firm Raubal. No information was given beyond address and phone number. A reclusive business, old-fashioned ways. Why not?
Once, I met him in town, and he invited me for a coffee. We had a good view over the city, and he drew my attention to the castle hill that was undercut in a quite daring manner by an Autobahn. He hold me that he as construction engineer had a decisive part in calculating the statics of that thing. This was the first time the thought "this is too good to be true" did cross my mind.
On another drive home, I talked about my research. Then he said:
"Ah, yes, Professor Hartmann. I know him quite a bit from the time we were both assistant professors here in Saarbrücken"
"Do you really mean Uwe Hartmann, the physicist, doing scanning probe microscopy?". Just to make sure, since the name is quite common.
"Yes, of course."
"But this is impossible. When Hartmann came here, he had already been a full tenured professor in another place, and before that, he has been in America, and before that, in Cologne."
I asked my professor. He confirmed what I said, and that an economist Dr. Raubal was unknown to him.
This is what I told our parish administrator. When our eyes met, we were both scared. It was a sunny summer day, and I felt cold.