Click on the Madoff link to the left to see the story on KGO-TV. I was room parent for four years for a child of the guy in the yellow jump suit and it distresses me greatly to think of how the boy and his siblings are doing through this ordeal.
The dad is charged with nine counts of fraud for allegedly swindling dozens of people out of millions of dollars. The allegation is that he "made off" with their money, including kids' college funds.
I recall the fantastic birthday party for the son who invited the entire 7th grade. The magnificent house, located behind electronic gates, was dressed up as a casino, replete with blackjack tables, roulette wheels and professionals to man each station. I recall the Range Rover and designer duds, and the fact that the boy had an iphone before even my husband did! The family seemed close knit, lovely, well-mannered and oh-so-prosperous.
But I gotta be honest: I also recall handing homeroom rosters and volunteer sign-up sheets to the parents for four years in a row, and not once did they look me in the eye, sign up for anything or mutter a word of thanks. Evidently, there were bigger fish to fry.
Now we find out that the District Attorney intends to prove that the man in the cuffs and yellow jail suit managed little more than a house of cards, a ponzi scheme of the type, though perhaps not the magnitude, that put Bernie behind bars.
Clearly, people in the community are angry, and some have even begun culling information into a BLOG. That tells me one thing: there is more info coming down the pike about these alleged activities.
One of the recurrent themes in my new novel - Finding Clarity: A Mom, A Dwarf and a Posh Private School in the People's Republic of Berkeley - is that the appearance of altruism is often a disguise for deceit. And that goes for the fat cats who fund your kid's school, be it public, private or parochial.
Doesn't matter if your six kids do go to private school or if your vacations are grander than that of the average bear. What matters is that things don't always add up and they aren't always what they seem. As I said, the kids always seemed well behaved, gracious and fond of one another. The father? It never made any sense to me. No matter how wealthy or what a big shot investor I always heard he was, his appearance, his comportment - none of it added up. None of it.
So, the moral of the story might be that when it doesn't make sense, it doesn't for a good reason. You know of what I speak.