The End of Charity Fund Raising

The kind-hearted and generous folk of Sydney’s Eastern Suburbs are hereby advised that all charitable fundraising activities must cease forthwith. Consequently, residents are no longer permitted to organise, or donate to, charitable efforts such as the Wardy Claus Christmas present drive for sick kids. Also prohibited are the annual Mullet Pro at Tamarama Beach raising awareness of mental health issues, and Boards for Bushfires from the Bronte Boardriders. Sophie Smith can no longer Run for Premature Babies, and any other activities designed to harness goodwill for the betterment of the world are outlawed.

The aforementioned charitable undertakings may only resume when:

  • Every royal family, everywhere in the world, abdicates the throne and redistributes their enormous ill-gotten wealth among the great unwashed.
  • Every single cigarette smoker (or vaper) on the planet quits their disgusting, self-indulgent and destructive habit and donates their smoking (or vaping) money to charity.
  • People stop paying $AU90 to have their fur baby receive a massage.
  • Multinational corporations pay the tax they are required, at law, to pay.
  • Corporations return the taxpayer-funded JobKeeper payments they received while recording massive profits during a pandemic. Go!
  • The world’s major religions release the substantial wealth hoarded in sites such as the Vatican, and direct it to the less fortunate: blessed are the poor.
  • Celebrities stop spending $1315 for a dog collar, $550 for a dog leash, and $84,000 on a car for their 9-year-old daughter.
  • The Australian government reverses the decision to spend $500 million to glorify war.
  • Church organisations in Australia stop defending paedophile priests and redirect the exorbitant legal fees to their parishioners throughout the world. Just drop it off at Vinnies.
  • FIFA and the IOC pay every person who works at their major events, such as the 2023 Women’s World Cup, including the volunteers whose work is essential to the conduct of those events.
  • Local politicians replace pink flowers with institutional change next International Women’s Day.
  • Mattias Cormann pays for his own international flights.
  • Fees for the country’s aged-care facilities do not pay for mansions with tennis courts and swimming pools.
  • The most expensive and elaborate building in the village or town of so many developing nations is not the church, synagogue, mosque, temple or other religious house of worship.
  • Australian taxpayers see a return on the $190,000 Scott Morrison spent on an empathy consultant.
  • Parliamentary pensions are paid on merit.
  • NSW Labor politicians stop shopping at Aldi.

In the interim, residents are advised that special dispensation will be given to GoFundMe pages raising money for highly-paid homophobes and reality TV failures seeking social media stardom.

Image: http://www.istockphoto.com

First published in The Beast magazine, July 2021

Retired sprint cyclists to donate their muscles to charity.

Professional sprint cyclists will donate their unwanted leg muscles to charity upon retirement to give recreational riders a new level of speed and power.

“Retired cyclists don’t need their leg muscles,” announced a spokesperson for the charity.

“This initiative allows those riders to donate their muscles to a recreational rider and to see those muscles re-used. Sprint cyclists work extremely hard to build their extraordinary muscles so it is great to see those muscles will not go to waste. It’s also another way for cyclists to give back to their sport.”

Thousands of local riders have already signed up for the program, and have requested muscles from one track star in particular.

“Robert Forstemann.”

“Every local rider wants Quadzilla’s thighs. Even though he’s still competing, he has promised to donate them to the charity when he retires from international competition. The muscles are so big we actually plan to divide them and distribute them to about 10 different people – no single amateur rider can handle thighs that big.”

“We’re also offering Thighs of the Realm, from Sir Chris Hoy and Elis Ligtlee, who is a Knight of the Order of Orange-Nassau. Muscles were also donated by Shane Kelly, Laura Trott and Jason Kenny, plus Kristina Vogel, Anastasia Voynova and the recently retired duo of Stephanie Morton and Anna Meares.”

Road cyclists have also agreed to participate in the program. German sprinter Andre ‘Gorilla’ Greipel will donate his calf muscles when he retires to concentrate on his singing career. Dylan Groenewegen and Erik Zabel are offering their pistons, and Mario Cipollini’s muscles come with a free waxing and tanning kit.

Each set of muscles comes with a diet and workout guide to help maintain the muscles, as well as a free pair of custom-made jeans which will actually fit over the ample legs.

The program is so popular organisers are requesting muscles from current riders, and may expand the program’s remit to include other body parts.

“We’ve made contact with Peter Sagan, whose muscles have been requested by road cyclists, sprinters, puncheurs and mountain bikers. Marianne Vos, Wout van Aert and Pauline Ferrand-Prevot have been swamped with requests, and everyone wants Mathieu Van der Poel’s legs, heart, lungs…

Image: http://www.gettyimages.com

Gift for life.

Gift arrive today.

What gift arrives today? replied Gwen, who recognised Wilson’s number but not the content of the message from the jovial and effusive charity liaison.

Arrive Gift today, make you happy forever.

Eternal happiness was not the first grand claim Wilson had made, but the transactions between Gwen and the children’s charity usually flowed in the opposite direction. Appreciation letters were common, especially approaching Christmas, but never before a gift. Thabani’s letter had impressed Gwen and Dara immensely, for its linguistic competence and the cute drawing of a tropical palm tree, despite the children’s home lying in the heart of southern Zimbabwe’s arid region.

He’s clever, Gwen had told Wilson.

No, is not Clever, is Thabani, he’d replied.

“You should give Wilson some lessons in grammar, and tactful language,” quipped Dara light-heartedly. The grammar lessons did not eventuate, nor did the sponsorship the couple had initially requested. They’d been matched with 3-year-old Rose and had been quite content. But they soon discovered that Rose would not be receiving their benevolence. When they contacted Wilson, he informed them Rose had never existed. Maybe they were thinking of Primrose, or her identical sisters Prudence and Privilege.

Sensing their disappointment, and determined to find a child to benefit from the couple’s goodwill, Wilson had messaged soon after,

You want Charity?

Us, charity? This wasn’t making any sense. Gwen understood the difficulty of communicating in a second language, her students faced it every day, but now Wilson seemed to be offering them charity. What is happening?

To be honest, Wilson, we’ve almost lost hope, they’d confessed after hearing the news of Rose and failing to secure another sponsor child.

No, not lose Hope, Hope and Faith I see today with my very own eyes, this I am sure.

Gwen was buoyed by Wilson’s irrepressible optimism and his continued dedication in undeniably challenging circumstances, and she and Dara were determined to provide an impoverished child with a better life. But even after endless trials and tribulations with their charitable efforts, they still had no idea why they would now be the recipients of a gift.

“Maybe it’s a thank you for the water pump we funded, suggested Dara. “or the equipment for the sewing and carpentry workshops. Wilson did say the sewing machines were ‘great for Blessing’ though I’m sure he meant to say ‘a grateful blessing’.”

“Perhaps, but why send us a gift, and how can Wilson be sure it’ll arrive today? Nothing sent between here and Zimbabwe has ever arrived on time.”

Then the couple heard a noise. A noise that would change their lives forever, just as Wilson had promised.

Ding, dong!

Gwen opened the door. Standing in front of her was not a harried delivery driver demanding a signature. At their door stood a shy young African boy gazing up at her with big, brown eyes.

“Hello, how are you?” he whispered.

“My name is Gift Matebe.”

Image: Jess Bailey