garbage man scam


oboe.jpg  Some asshole in Florida beat the real trash collectors to the tipping punch by leaving fake holiday notes on people’s doorsteps informing them of an address to which to mail holiday tips.  Shame, shame. 

[Tangent Alert]

I have to say though, it was a cleaver scam.  Back in the day, before I got (unjustly and unceremoniously) fired from my very first job delivering newspapers, my wise mother suggested I deliver holiday cards with the papers one morning to introduce myself (and inspire giving).  So I drafted a little note explaining that I was thirteen and saving up to buy my very own oboe.  It worked like magic.  In the space of the next week I made my annual salary in tips. 

Soon after, my grandparents happened to meet a famous oboist after a concert and happened to tell him all about their granddaughter’s quest to buy an oboe.  He let them in on another scam: oboists often pay for trips to France by buying a few oboes in Paris and reselling them in the states for a mark up.  He hooked them up with an oboist on his way to France, they recounted my sweet story and an at-cost oboe was promised to me.  My holiday tips covered one third, my parents came up with another third and my now-very-invested-in-the-quest grandparents covered the rest.  And shipping insurance. 

I have to say, though I haven’t played since college and the prized instrument now wastes away in a closet in my mother’s apartment, that oboe is to date the best appreciating investment I have ever made.

And it all started with a little holiday tip note scam.

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