Tuesday, August 3, 2010

the fool on the hill

there is the distinct possibility that i'm about to be ripped off.

do any of you have any idea what the odds are for that? most of you reading this know me pretty well. (how do i get past that part? where everybody knows me? any suggestions?) . but you do. and you know i'm not one of those people that goes through life with his shirt tucked into his panty hose with his ass hanging out. (work with me, it's a metaphor).


i mentioned on day 2, that i was born, in a hospital in jersey city, to a mother who ate her young, the important part being jersey city. there, you're born ready. we'd emerge from mom's nether regions, carrying switchblades if we could (at least around the time in history when i came forth.) so i'm nobody's fool. (my pockets have never been picked, because i'm acutely aware since childhood that there are people that want your stuff. ) i'm good with the internet and know exactly how much info is enough and how much is too much. when people i'm just meeting, hug me, i check my pockets, and i walk through airports more secure than iraqi women in burqas. i'm just a happening, aware, hip, wisecracking, ex-patriot, metro new york, jew, and proud of it. no fool here.

so how then, one might ask, is there a possibility of a ripoff? well, it's something like this.

if you'll recall toy story, earlier, i'm a victim of gadget love. i'm currently, as i mentioned, having a love affair with my sony walkman, (i think i have become one of those people that bursts forth in song in public if i think i'm alone. i'm afraid to actually notice if i do. but i'm pretty sure it happens......at least a little.) and i had that ereader, which i mentioned might be going back, and it did. great reader, crappy internet. (and when i see all those people with that i-touch thing, i get a tad green. ) my phone has internet, albeit really crappy internet, so i yearn for something better.

so here i am, kind of pining, for that touch thing, but hey, i'm not so in love as to spend $300 bucks on it. and then i stumbled onto an online auction. reputable site, a little complicated, but i've purchased there before and it's been very cool. so i see a touch thing for $50 bucks, high bid, with 2 days to go. i'm thinking how high will it go? i know they go for $ 300, so i figure i'll go $150 max, and if i win, hey, the touch is mine.

so i wait until there's like 1 minute left in this auction, and i throw my bid. now here's the tricky part. here's where jersey city smarts come in. the bids go in $1.25 increments, and i figure i can't be the only one who is among the people in the dark, stalking, waiting for the last minute to throw a bid. if you throw a bid way higher than current, it only takes you to $1.25 above the last bid, and so on, until someone outbids you. so if i say $100, and someone has already said that, i lose. but everyone's high bid is a secret. ( i think you all know how this works), so i bid $151.25, thinking that if someone else's highest possible bid is $150, and he's there before me, that extra $1.25 pushes me to the top. i'm proud of that logic, and so i did it. at the time, the bid was actually $61.25, and i knew all hell was going to break loose in the last minute because there is no way on earth, the 16GB Apple I-Touch was going for $61.25. that's a gimmee. no way, jose. incon-fucking-ceivable.

well, the final bid was indeed mine. exactly $61.25 (i'm kind of pissed, actually. all that planning, all that brilliant logic and for what? bupkis. it defies reason).

so i won it!! i'm so excited i could scream. the touch thing is mine for $70.00 (including the shipping). shout out. high fives. yada yada.

so i email the guy instantly (i'm not one to sit on an auction debt. i won it. i want it, so i pay right away, usually). paypal, credit card, i'm good to go.....but.... when i email him, he says he wants a check in the mail. no paypal, no security, a real abba moment. (take a chance on me, in case you're not completely following this). so here's jersey city david, out on a limb, what to do, what to do?

time for a snopes moment. (the emes...that's yiddish for truth)

the truth is, during the course my life, i have been, how shall i say, snookered, a couple of times. once in a pyramid scheme in the 80's (total loss about a grand, thank god i didn't know bernie madoff.) and then there was the time the fabulous surround sound system fell off a truck and i was the lucky recipient in the parking lot of the two con men salesmen, who took me for a couple of hundred, for a system that belonged at the bottom of the ocean). so, a couple of slip-ups in 60 years is my true record. not too bad. i'll still bet my jersey city bona fides on my common sense.

which brings us to today. i sent the check in good faith. i just have a feeling it's going to be ok, so on saturday i sent it, and got an email that he was sending the touch thing that same day. it's coming from pennsylvania, so i'm figuring tues/wed/thurs arrival. today is tuesday. and it didn't arrive. ok, that leaves wed/thurs. i'm still very optimistic, until tomw. then i'm holding our for thursday. if it's not here by thursday, that will bring me back to the beginning. which is, there is the distinct possibility that i'm about to be ripped off.........

to be continued........

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