Saturday, March 07, 2009

Scammed ep2

When you come to a different country, a lot of things take a turn, I mean apart from your bank balance, which just decides to take a dive and only afterwords does it realize that he (or it) forgot to tie the Bunjee rope! 

Apart from that, it all of a sudden changes, for good or for bad, depends on how unlucky or lucky  you are (I dont believe in Hard work!). And there are times that you are led to believe that the whole world is bent on picking on you for no reason. It can start with a small thing, like that innocent lady who walks her dog every day on the pavement and with whom you had a 3 month long 'good morning' routine, ignores you and suddenly starts telling Lucy (the dog) "dont bark at this person" repetedly, or that dog peeing on you, or you stepping on dogs poop, or you dropping your half eaten candy bar which you found under your pillow that morning or a million other things. And then it graduates to your boss at work telling you repetedly how incompetent you are with all his sarcastic charm, or your system at work crashing down, or just one or two softwares which you need to work crashing down, or you forgetting to load the 150 lines code which you had developed last night to your jump drive (I'm not a computer geek, so 150 is still big for me), or forgetting to take your jump drive after you had remembered to load it, or you realizing that you should've just emailed the code to yourself, or, well, you know the stuff!!... What i'm trying to get at is that when all this becomes a part of your life, you end up being vulnerable to possibilities of something good, and at the sight of a bleak ray of hope, you follow it, ignoring the fact that that bleak ray of hope might be coming from the patented lamp made by Hope Inc. and was carried by a fellow with a crooked nose and one eye and a skeleton arm and a flea crown, who just happened to find you in that dark tunnel.

So if your imagination is still in working condition you'd know by now what this is leading to. Yes, a description of another scam. We live in a quite place in Chicago (come to think of it, US is quite in general, unless at war!), me and my roommate are students and are looking for another roommate. On being suggested to put up advertisements online (something you just have to get used to, internet, and we are just not that used to the whole internet thing, and you might wanna contest that but if you dont think its true, youre hardly an Indian anymore). Craiglist, Sulekha (yes it works here too, or here only!!), and what not. But, have you ever heard the saying, 'the best deal is what you pay for', me neither, just made that up, but still, I took that seemingly credible advice and found a paid service that would find me a roommate, 'Roommates.com', i pay for 3 days premium service after i started getting replies on my profile which i could see only if i pay for it (its a neat revenue generating technique come to think of it), and see the replies. 16 yr old Gay male, a transgender, prostitute, transgender, hot looking chick, student, student, hot chick, gay female, student, one who admits she smokes a lot, hot chick, summarize the replies. Hot chicks and students were the first to get my replies, which is any 'normal' person would do. 

Students didn reply back, one Hot chick (please notice capital H of Hot) wants to come and stay. Yes, she doesn want to see the apartment, doesn want any other place, she wants to send the money to me by a cashiers check through her agent who is also arranging for her flight, she sells african beads and is from Spain, she sends her pics and i'm flat (awesome figure, 5 feet 8, sends her pics wearing velvet pants, what do you expect!!), we have long email sessions (the email conversation was almost 25 replies long by now, i even know her philosophy in life, her roommates in Spain, why she went into the bead business, and they were all very good conversations, she signed off with 'your future roommate'). Then it stopped. I have not entertained any other reply from anyone else, cuz she wants me to confirm before she sends money (of course!!), and then she doesn send any reply, nothing, i want to know when is she sending the money, what s the order number (they have that thing where you can track the packages, internet!), I dont wanna spend from my pocket, which is empty anyways. Nothing. I put the ad again, and then she is back. 'Hey, sorry I was in Africa for some business, heres the details, '23-watever-234351!#$' (you can imagine a nagging female voice to go along with it, might be fun), I check the status theres nothing to be found, and after some time it gets delivered... 

Now, what has not been told yet is that my ex-roomie expected it to be scam from the start. I just took him as a sadist and didn care much at first but when i saw a the scam alert on the website, well then you have to stop thinkin that luck was on your side all this time. I shoot an email with the details to customer care and they say 'sieze all contact with this person' and that he/she is a known scammer and that i should contact IRS!! 

In case you are wondering how it works, the check is a fake, however, the banks here make the balance available as soon as you deposit it. Now if you withdraw money from your account immediately, which according to you is already there, and give it to the nice lady mentioned above, then when the bank finds out the check is a frod, you are indebted, and you are labelled as a check frod, and your account is sealed, not to mention your credit history is screwed royally, you would almost never again get a loan or a credit card, or rent a car, or a house, or anything else. I got a check for $5430, when i asked for $1000, first month rent and deposit. you do the math.

PS: be safe!!! be careful!!! peace!!! all these statements cannot help you... 
PPS: in case they do... be safe!! be careful!!

6 comments:

Vivek said...

aur ek baar khus hote firang poti rommate banti bolke............

Sheru said...

chick magnet nikhil sindhwani...

Sujeet Kuchibhotla said...

I help you..and i get called a sadist...wah! wah! :-p :-p

Akshit said...

now that is why Indians are trained not to believe unless you see/feel the capital H in Hot chick.. and same is the reason that Indian banks do not allow withdrawal till the check is cahsed...
Moral of the story.. be Indian, Buy Indian.. open an account with SBI there

Deepthi.E said...

OMG..

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