Lemon aid for poor pensioner

01:43, Jan 31 2009
LEMON AID: A TradeMe user is auctioning this "divine" lemon to help a ripped-off pensioner.

It might not have an image of the Virgin Mary on it, but an aging lemon might prove a miracle for ripped-off pensioner Gladys Carlin.

Gladys featured on TVNZ's Fair Go programme after loaning $30,000 to a friend and going guarantor on their bank loan.

When the friend went bankrupt, Gladys not only lost her own money but was dumped with the $16,000 loan to repay as well.

A kind-hearted TradeMe addict is now auctioning a slightly malformed lemon in a bid to raise cash for the cash-strapped pensioner.

The seller, an Aucklander called 'Smoocher', writes that though the lemon may not be as eye-catching as yesterday's Virgin Mary pebble it is a worthier purchase.

"This Lemon has an image on it, and I will let you decide what it is. This lemon has only been authenticated as a Lemon.


"All profits of this auction go to Gladys from the Fair Go programme. Please enjoy this auction in the spirit it is meant."

The auction site has erupted with bad puns and support for the "lemon aid", with many bidders dismissing the Virgin Mary pebble seller as greedy by comparison.

"I hope the other person with a religious auction don't get all bitter about this. Good on you for raising money for something other than your own pocket," one bidder wrote this morning.

"Thanks, I do hope the other religious auction doesn't get bitter, or get the pip with this auction," responded the anonymous fund-raiser.

"Anyway, when life deals one a lemon, make lemon aid. I want Gladys to receive some kindness, as she gave it so willingly."

Other bidders have claimed the lemon depicts "Mona Lisa with breast implants" or Robert Muldoon.

The top bid so far is $9.50, with the auction due to run until Wednesday night.

Fair Go says Gladys' plight shows why people should think carefully before agreeing to go guarantor for anyone ? even a friend.

The show has set up a trust account for Gladys with the help of the ANZ bank. Donations can be made at any ANZ branch by quoting the account number and name.

Account Number: 01-0745-0236720-00

Account Name: "Gladys Carlin Support Account"

Click here to see the auction.