In today’s everything-online world, the scams are everywhere.
I call the too-good-to-be-true scams “Golden Carrots,” and they are, indeed, everywhere.
You know it. I know it. Scooby-Doo knows it. Everybody knows it.
Almost ALWAYS, the carrots aren’t all glitter and gold, though…
We’ve all received the robo calls about our car’s warranty expiring, haven’t we?
Or the calls saying that our student loans are overdue.
My favorite is from the Social Security Department, stating that they’d like you to “PRESS 1” for the Law Enforcement Department.
I’ll let you in on a little secret…
Neither the Internal Revenue Service, nor the Social Security Administration will ever call you and tell you that the police are on the way to arrest you.
As a general rule, if the police are in route to your location, Johnny Law rarely calls ahead to alert you of their impending E.T.A.
It’s nothing personal. They’re just doing their job.
Secret #2: If you don’t break the law, you don’t have to worry about the police showing up at your door.
I’m getting off track…
Back to the scammers…
Personally, I like to keep these Target-gift-card addicts on the phone as long as I can.
Why do they always demand Target Gift cards?
In my mind, the longer I can keep the guys demanding VISA gift cards on the phone — wasting their time and (hopefully) destroying their will to live — the less likely that person is to actually successfully scare someone else into complying with their ridiculous demands.
Plus, messing with this human scum is a ton of fun.
The opposite of these scam calls is what I refer to as “Golden Carrots.”
The unbelievable calls from “recruiters” that offer you the best paying job you’ve ever heard of.
An email stating that a Prince in Nigeria has left all of his fortune to you.
Your “bank” calling you to “verify” that the $10 million dollars that was just deposited into your account is legit.
There are a ton of them.
Again, I like to keep these losers on the phone as long as possible and waste as much of their day, as possible.
Also, when I can hear the frustration in their tones, it brings me great joy and happiness.
I’m easily amused.
What can I say?
The other day, a man with a strong Middle Eastern accent called me and offered me the Documentation Specialist role of a lifetime!
Intrigued, I started to ask questions about the role’s scope of work and location.
He said the work was remote until 2022, and the starting pay was $40, and needed to know right away if I was interested, because he had many other calls to make.
Not so fast, Mr. Scam-a-roo!
I’ve got about 300 questions that I’m going to ask, all which will be spoken more slowly than molasses dripping from a maple tree, and I’ll ask you to hold on for me, at least 50 times.
I, in turn, asked what the name of this fantastically-paying company was.
He gave me three random letters: BME
Hmmmmmmm…I think I’ve got a live one!
“Where is BME located?” I asked.
This kind gentleman informed me they were headquartered in Miami, FL and would pay for all relocation expenses, in 2022, plus an additional $10,000 for the inconvenience of having to move.
“Are you sure they’re not in Venus?” I asked. “I just Googled BME, and they show to be located in a place called Venus, approximately 158.86 million miles from my current location.”
“No, no,” he assured me, missing the mileage reference altogether. “They’re in Tampa — I mean, Miami, Florida.”
“Yeah, but they only pay $40 an hour, and everyone knows that all companies in Florida pay at least $75 an hour. I mean, that’s common knowledge. It was on the news!” I informed the world’s best recruiter.
“Well, if you’re truly interested in the position, and if you want me to shortlist you, tell me the rate that you’re looking for, and I’ll let you know if that’s acceptable. I have some leverage with this company.”
“With my experience, I would have to get at least — how did you get my telephone number, by the way?” I veered into my first of dozens of diversions.
“I found your qualifications on Monster.com. How much is the rate that you’re looking for? You didn’t say.”
Not even phased in the slightest, I continued, “Oh, that resume is so old. It’s been out there for ages. I should probably update my profile on Monster, shouldn’t I?”
This back and forth went on for nearly 90 minutes.
He said he was in New Jersey — maybe he was.
We talked about Covid and how nice it will be when this madness is over. Chatting about a variety of topics, he would always come back to the “role” and what it would take to get to me to work this company — somewhere in Florida — the location changed several times.
I actually cooked a grilled ham & cheese while he patiently waited for me to “answer the door.”
We finally agreed to the following:
- $175/Hour starting wage
- $20/Hour increases every 30 days
- All benefits paid by the company and 14 weeks of paid vacation
- Paid relocation to Miami, FL, with additional $13,000 relocation bonus
- Annual bonus increases to match my ending salary of each year
- Monthly housing allowance of $5,000
- New company car each year, either an Audi or Mercedes
- Employer to reimburse me for all company-car fuel and toll-road expenses
Finally, the most patient scammer in the history of scammers says to me, “All right. All we need now is the last four digits of your social security number and your date of birth. We need this information to start your background check.”
“Oh, of course! I completely understand,” I replied. “I’m so excited about this job! At first, I wasn’t, but I’m glad we could come to a better agreement,” I droned on.
“Yes, I am, too. You will make a great addition to the team! Now, give me your date of birth and the last four of your social security number, so I can get started on your background check,” he said, seething just a little bit.
“Absolutely!” I said. “The last four digits of my social security number are 1-2-3-4 and my date of birth is January 1st, 1920.”
He hung up!
The nerve of that guy, after he promised me such a great job!
Listen, we all know that there are scammers everywhere.
They dangle those Golden Carrots, or they try to scare the bejeezus out of us with threats.
It’s an unfortunate part of life, in the year 2021.
So why not have a little fun with it?
At the very least, you’ll have a funny story to tell your friends, or maybe, you’ll even get a blog post out of it.
Make the best out of every carrot that life throws in your daily salads, and keep on being a good person.
It doesn’t get much simpler than that.