I was sitting at work,
happily working hours of overtime for no pay, when I got an instant message from a young lady that used to live with us. (She’s now in college, doing quite well — I’m incredibly proud of her, but that’s another story altogether…) Anyway, here’s how the conversation went:
Jess: hw u doing?
Me: I’m alive.
Jess: i need your help fast
Me: What’s up?
[the next lines came faster than any human being can type]
Jess: I’m writing this with tears in my eyes, I came down here to London, United Kingdom for a short vacation unfortunately i was mugged at the park of the hotel where i stayed, all cash, credit card and cell were stolen off me but luckily for me i still have my passport with me. I’ve been to the embassy and the Police here but they’re not helping issues at all and my flight leaves soonest from now but am having problems settling the hotel bills and the hotel manager won’t let me leave until i settle the bills.
[I didn’t think it was a scammer, I actually thought it was Jess pretending to be a scammer, which was funny, so I played along]
Me: But you’ve got WiFi, so that’s good.
Jess: Please, all I need now is just lend me $900 or any amount you have at hand now and you can have it wired to my name via Western Union I’ll have to show my passport as ID to pick it up here and i promise to pay you back as soon as I get back home
Me: You know — you could probably hock that laptop you’re on for 900 bones.
Jess: am on someone elses computer system here in the hotel where i am
Me: And that’s a problem?
Jess: and i won’t stay here for long
Me: Even better! Grab the computer and go!
Jess: pls do something
Me: What are you talking about, anyway?
Jess: am serious
Jess: in UK now
Me: Your IP address does not trace to the UK
At which point I thought the fun was over. I texted the real Jess to let her know her Yahoo account was compromised, and went back to work. A minute later though…
Jess: are u there?
Me: Yes, I’m here. You want me to send money to your name, to Western Union in London?
Me: Who went with you?
Jess: me alone
Me: Does Marge even know you left? I saw her yesterday!
[long pause, at which point “Jess” is obviously looking over our previous conversations]
[Jess calls me Dad, true, but it wasn’t really an answer to the question!]
Me: Did you tell Marge you were leaving?
[oh yeah, there is no Marge, I was watching the Simpsons in the background]
Jess: am sorry
Jess: i never knew it will result all this
Me: I’ll let her know you’re OK. Do you have a local Western Union I can send it to?
Jess: there is one close to the hotel
Me: I actually only have $750… perhaps the hotel will let you settle?
Me: Otherwise it will be a day or so before I can get the rest, the bank is closed.
Jess: am scared
Jess: the hotel management is threatening to hand me over to the police
Me: I understand. Let me know the Western Union address, and I’ll go up to the Hippry Market and send it out.
[“Hippry” was actually a typo, I was going to make up some OTHER funny name, but since it was made up anyway, it didn’t really matter]
Jess: can u go and send it now
Me: Yeah, but they need to know where
Me: When I sent money to your sister for her boob job, they needed the address of the place it was going
[Jess has no sister. I also didn’t really say boob job, but I wish I had…]
Jess: just tell them u want to send it to the information i gave to u
Me: Sweety, you just said you’re in the UK. I’m sure you’re scared, but can you get more info?
Jess: this is the address to send it to
Jess: Name: Jessica , State: London W10 4AH, Country: United Kingdom
Jess: when u get there, send it like this
Jess: Dad…. are u there
Me: Yes, I’m here.
Jess: are u going to send it now
Me: I’m calling your sister to see if she has the other $150
Jess: why not send me the $750 u have with u
Jess: send it first, so that i can settle the hotel bills
Me: I don’t want the hotel to give you a hard time, those people in the UK can be nasty
Jess: i know
[at this point I started to get tired of the conversation, so I figured I should just have fun]
Me: I hear they kill Americans sometimes if they don’t pay!
Jess: if i get that,i can settle them and they will be patient with me
Me: I just want to get you home
Jess: i know
Jess: just go and send the $750 first
Me: Also, your sister just texted me, she’s in Amsterdam. She can fly to London and meet you.
Jess: I need to settle the hotel bills as soon as possible
Me: Marge is going to be really upset though… I can’t believe you didn’t tell her!
Jess: Dad,pls don’t tell her anything about it
Jess: Dad, pls act fast am scared and starving here
Me: Hmm… Who is letting you use their computer? Is it a private location?
Me: Remember when we killed that bum so he wouldn’t rat us out?
Me: Maybe you can do the same to this computer person… Take their computer, and if they chase you… you know what to do. It’s a foreign country, they’ll never find you.
Jess: Dad… I can’t believe u are saying such things now, that i really need your help the most
Me: I mean, don’t be as cruel as you were to that person that stole your identity… They never could identify the body…
Oh well, fun while it lasted.