Sunday came and went without another e-mail from Stan. On Monday I made that call to the RCMP then sent Stan this e-mail:
Sorry I didn't get back to you, Stan. I took the rest of the weekend away from the studio. I think I have a solution for us which might satisfy both of us. Actually two solutions.
1- You could pay me through PayPal and I will cover the cost of packing and mail from the $3430.00 US. That is simple and easy. Do you know how to use Pay Pal?
2- The other method could be for you to send me the bank cheque for $3430.00 US and I will take it to the bank. I will not send the drawing until my bank assures me that your bank cheque has cleared.
How does that sound?
Then, not many hours later (those guys in that Nigerian boiler room must never sleep) I received Stan's response:
Its okay,i will prefer the check,do consider the pieces sold and get back to me with your name and address with your phone # for me to proceed with the payment.
∂Will await your message.
No real surprise there, about Stan's choice of payment. And did you notice how he's reassuring me that he REALLY wants the drawing and he's hitting that request for my address and phone again (which I've told him before are on my website).
I thought I would push it a bit and see how much I could get away with in my response to that:
My address and all the information you need is on my website. What I need from you before we go any further is your mailing address. I will pack the drawing in a safe tube and have it addressed and ready for when the cheque clears. I want to prevent the drawing you want from getting sold while I wait. By the way, you were mentioning that you were being transferred to the UK, so you will need me to send it there, won't you?
Stan came back with a short one:
nope my shipper will be coming to your place for the pick up
I like that "nope" touch. Sounds almost like someone else is writing this one for Stan. It sounds too, like they're getting impatient with me so I decided to remind him about the mailing. I notice Stan ignored my question about his being transferred to the UK:
I thought I made that clear, Stan. I am going to absorb the cost of the packing and mailing.
Now, I would never write to a purchaser of my work with that tone but I was trying to see how much sarcasm Stan could read into this and whether he could tell I was stringing him along. Stan didn't seem to pick up on the sarcasm, but he did finally catch the message that my address and phone number are on my website because he sent this:
can you send me your site again i want to confirm something.
I'm thinking that the "something" is my address. Strange, that he wants my drawing so bad but he can't figure out how to get back to my website. Oh, I forgot to mention that the subjects of his e-mails have been changing. The first subject was the title of the work he wanted and the next group of e-mails was titled "Interested", then the last batch have been titled "Payment/Pickup" as if they are being pulled from a file of sequential topics. I answered his request for the site this way:
You first, Stan. I mentioned earlier that I needed your address to prepare the packaging and you haven't cleared up that issue of your move to the UK. First you said you were in California then you said you were out of town and you were being transferred to the UK. This is going to necessitate a difference in the way I pack the drawing.
I've been hoping Stan sends the cheque and I can frame it and put it on my studio wall. I got an e-mail from Ron Lines with the most brilliant suggestion yet:
Why don't you tell Stan to send you the bank draft. When he does, keep it until a Nigerian "Government Official" needs your help to get money out of the country then send Stan's bank draft to them. Sweet revenge.
I figure if Stan hasn't caught on by now, he never will. My last message to Stan was sent yesterday late afternoon and there hasn't been a response to that. Maybe Stan, or his supervisor finally caught on. I may have played with the rat too long. I'll give him time for one more nibble and see what happens.