Sorry, got my fables a bit mixed there. Rather, let us review the splendid and sad saga of Raj Grewal, which has recently been refreshed by the news this week reporting on what was his explosively successful fundraiser of last April. That’s the one where $600,000 was raised from, I gather, 1,200 attendees willing to disgorge $500 to engorge on banquet-hall fare of straw salad and rubber chicken.
An earlier story broke last November that the MP had borrowed and lost “millions” of dollars over a three-year period at a casino just a dice-throw from Parliament Hill. Losing that much is not, as the idiom has it, “a piece of cake.” It takes application, great nerve, and impeccably poor card sense.
Gathering that much to lose in the first place can’t have been a breeze either.
To borrow “millions” in a three-year period presumes a kind of gold-medal artfulness and unexcelled determination. I suspect that most of us, given the same time period, might be able to cadge — at most — a couple of hundred bucks, maybe a thousand, from friends or relatives, and then only if we had a really good story. You know: the house burned down, no insurance, living in a snow bank; first-born kidnapped, need a quick bundle or they’re going to mail an ear or a toe of the offspring… that sort of thing.
Even then, it really wouldn’t do to go back to the same well, or wells, a few days later with a fresh plea that, by an incredible coincidence, the second-born had also been whisked away by another bunch and the new crowd were being a little testy about a quick ransom.
Now, I am not suggesting any of these speculative scenarios were Mr. Grewal’s, but merely sketching how typical mortals might encounter a similar emergency to his, and the attendant obstacles to hitting up your buddies for a few million on impressively short notice. Invent or die would be the motto. Obviously Mr. Grewal is a very resourceful man. Either that, or his friends are either inexpressibly generous or unspeakably gullible.
The precarious odyssey had to end, and it did.