When Steven and I joined the YMCA a few months ago, we decided it was probably time to get rid of our treadmill. Since we moved, it has been banished to a dark corner of the garage. And really, what do we need it for when we have the YMCA and all of its fancy machines and gigantic lap pool to help us get in shape.
So, I snapped a few photos of the treadmill and placed an ad on Craigslist. We were pleased to immediately begin receiving some inquiries. After answering a few emails with “Yes, the treadmill is still available”, I received the following request from a gentleman named Larry…
Here’s how this thing works. Larry gets some poor, unsuspecting, overly trusting souls to believe that he is actually interested in buying what they have for sale. Then, he sends along a fraudulent check, which the sellers promptly deposit in their bank account. The check appears to clear, and they go ahead and either ship out the item, Larry’s “assistant” comes to pick it up, or no one arrives at all, leaving the sellers scratching their heads and wondering what happened. Wondering what happened right until their bank account is suddenly overdrawn because the bank has finally figured out that the check is fraudulent. Or, Larry might also request other personal information (including address, and phone numbers) to use for other illegal purposes.
Now, my first reaction (other than fighting back the urge to vomit from the atrocious grammar) was mild annoyance. I had my my cursor poised on the delete button, and almost let Ol’ Larry off the hook by simply ignoring his asinine attempt at scamming me.
Oh, but where is the fun in that?
Instead, I am writing a little email back to Larry, just to let him know that no, I am not interested in giving him any of my information or receiving a fraudulent check, and perhaps to give him a few free grammar tips. My guess is, once he knows I’m onto him, he will crawl back into whatever cyber hole he crawled out of, lying in wait for his next victim.
But, in the meantime, I would like to invite all of you to play along and give Larry a fitting send off in the way of an overloaded email account. Feel free to send emails to Larry at email@example.com. Sign him up on mailing lists, or maybe just forward all of the emails in your spam folder to him. Hell, why not just write him a note to let him know what a nice guy you think he is.
Oh, and while you’re at it, go ahead and pass this blog post and Larry’s email address along to your friends and family so they can join in the fun, and tell them to pass it along to their friends and family too.
Tonight’s 365 Project entry is dedicated to stopping the dumbass Craigslist scammers like Larry, or at least annoying the hell out of him with a few thousand emails. Happy Anniversary to my hubby and I…all I want for my Anniversary this year is an email blast for my new friend Larry. Help a girl out, will you?
And if you’re interested in learning more about guys like Larry and some of the other Craigslist scams going on out there, check out this great Blogger site dedicated to Exposing Craigslist Scammers.