Did you ever wish you had a rich uncle? Well, I once did. Unfortunately, because he was straight, he married a woman, and they had two children. So, even when I was just a lad, some sixty years ago, I knew I would never see a cent of that money: when he died, it would go to his wife; and should she predecease him, his children would naturally get it all.
As a result, when I received a call from a genealogist about ten years ago, saying that a mysterious relative of mine had died, and that I might be entitled to a part of the estate, the thought of my uncle and his millions never crossed my mind. Instead, I was waiting for the man on the other end of the line to get to the part where this mysterious relative had been a Nigerian prince, and that for a few thousand dollars, I could clear away one or two legal obstacles standing between me and a large fortune. Much to my surprise, he asked for no upfront money. Instead, he was willing to disclose the name this relative, and pursue the inheritance for me, for one third of whatever I got.
My girlfriend thought that I should find out who this relative was on my own, and cut this interloper out completely. But that would have required effort on my part. Besides, by letting him have a third, I knew he would be motivated to get as much for me as he could. I believe it pays to be generous with one’s associates. So I signed the contract, and sat back and waited for results.
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