Sunday, September 30, 2012


Here's the latest from "Debbie from New York":

Dear Jim,
 Thanks for your response, i really appreciate your help and honesty.
I'll get the check prepared and have it sent out to you asap.Then i'll let you know as soon as i have it sent to you. Kindly consider the piece sold to me and pls do take it off market.
 Thanks and i'll talk to you soon,

Hmmmmmmmm?! Take it "off market"? I don't think so, Deb. Not just yet, anyway!
No need to send a response to Deb. She/he knows I'm honest and wouldn't sell it out from under her/him. But wait! I wonder if she/he will go to my website and check? Y'think? Naw! She'll/he'll be too busy buying the other works for her/his new digs in South Africa.

Thursday, September 27, 2012


Deb seems to be keen on buying my drawing and has given me final instructions. This is "her" latest message:
I'm just reading your email now as I have been so busy all day preparing for the conference in the office,it starts this week. 
 Actually, my shipper should be in town sometime next week and will definitely be getting in touch with you for the pickup and also to inspect it for me.
Truth is, I would have handled this much differently if i would be at home but Im a bit pressed for time myself. Im moving to South Africa this month as Im being transferred and Promoted. 
 As it is, I'm sending you check which will include my shippers fees as well.He has asked for an upfront before coming and since I have no access to a lot of cash, Im trying to kill two birds with a stone.
 So, once you have received and cashed the check, deduct your funds and PLEASE help me send the remaining funds to him(shipper). I will forward his contact details to you once you have received the payment.
 Now I'm concluding you are a responsible person and I can therefore entrust you with this arrangement.I'll let you know Immediately the check is sent out to you so you should be looking out for it.
Many thanks and talk to you soon,
P.S: I can't find any address at the bottom of any of your e-mail response.

And here's my response to Deb:

My address is here in the logo.

What I am expecting and what I've learned when I originally called the police to ask about this scam, is that the con artist will send me a check and it will be for a greater amount than necessary. A much greater amount. When I contact the con artist and point out the mistake I will be instructed to send a money order or bank draft for the overage. In "Debbie from New York's" scam she is having me do essentially the same thing by paying the overage to "her" "shipper" and then I'll wait for the "shipper" to arrive to pick up the drawing. Only I'm not stupid enough to send money to the "shipper" and the "shipper" will never arrive. I plan to frame "Debbie from New York's" check and hang it on my studio wall. 

Stay tuned.


If you've been following my various aromatic adventures of smelling rats, you might be interested in what (I think) is yet one more. If you haven't been following this line, of course you're free to move backwards through my blog entries (I don't put too many of them up) and check out the previous ones.

I received the following e-mail, titled "Thunderpeek III" (title of one of my drawings), a couple of weeks ago:
My name is Debbie Walker, from New York. I hope this message finds you well.I was going through some of your works and my eyes caught this particular piece, I'm interested in purchasing it as I'm moving to a new apartment this month.Please let me know if you still have the piece available, if yes let me know and it's final price and more information about it. I will be waiting to read from you.

As you can see from my previous posts on this subject, there's a similarity in the content of this message. This one contains fewer spelling and syntax errors than some of the previous ones I've received. My answers to the previous ones have shown suspicion on my part, resulting in the rat ending the correspondence and going back into its hole. I hope this time to keep the bait out there and get the rat on the hook. I doubt very much that the rat is interested in my website (other than a way of getting in touch with the "mark"... me) and I doubt "Deb" will follow the link to this blog and discover that I'm on to "her"
Should this person turn out to be a legitimate client (which I doubt) I will have "stepped in it" royally, as they say.

I was about to go on a road trip, so I sent "Debbie Walker from New York" (aka "Stan from California" or "Jon from Norway") the following:
I am out of the studio for two weeks but will answer your message as soon as I return.
Thanks for your patience.

"Deb" responded:
Okay. I'll be waiting to hear from you.

When I returned a couple of days ago I sent "her" this:
Hi, Debbie Walker from New York,
I've returned to the studio and can now respond to your request. The piece is still available and is priced at $3500.00 Canadian plus shipping and packing (unframed). When you supply me with your address I can calculate the cost of shipping and packing and I will let you know the total cost.
Thank you for your interest in my work,

"Deb" answered:
Thanks for your prompt reply.
Unfortunately, I'm on my way to France on an official trip(I'm a marketing Executive) and wont be back for another two weeks.
 If you'd like to know, Im relocating to South Africa soon and I'm trying to gather some good stuff for my new abode. Im buying yours amongst others,quickly! before someone else grabs it.So, I'll arrange to send you payment ASAP.
However, I'll have to notify my shipper who's helping me move my stuff to get set for the pickup of the piece from your place as I MIGHT be delayed depending on how things goes.
PS: In the mean time, kindly get back to me with your contact address and also your phone# so I can get in touch with my Bank to get a check prepared and have it mailed out to you right away.

My reply today:
My address has been included at the bottom of each of the e-mail responses I've sent you. But I don't understand this shipper arrangement you describe. The normal procedure is for me to send the work to the purchaser. I can send it by courier to arrive by air if you wish. I just need to know your address so as to calculate the cost and add to the price of the drawing. The drawing will be unframed and will not weigh very much, and it will be in a secure container.
Thank you,

And that's where things sit at the moment. Stay tuned.