May 23, 2011 § 3 Comments
For the past month, I’ve been trying to find a subleaser for my apartment for the summer, which has not been easy due to the fact that everyone clears out of a college town during the summer if it happens to be in the middle of nowhere. I found a lovely living situation two years ago on Craigslist, so I figured I would use it for my subleasing needs again. If my one experience with Craigslist turned out fine; what could possibly go wrong?
After a couple of failed negotiations, a promising one popped up in my inbox.
Wow! I thought. I must’ve sold the apartment really well on Craigslist because this person just wants to move in with no questions asked! I was cautiously stoked. I also didn’t know what kind of name “RIVERA Chloe” was. But who cares? I replied immediately.
Chloe also responded swiftly.
Ahh…so the weird grammar and name must be attributed to her nationality. I read through the email but didn’t really understand the second paragraph, which I shrugged off because SOMEONE FINALLY WANTED MY APARTMENT YAY!! I mean, I was still skeptical of a person moving all the way over here from Switzerland without even asking about roommates, but my optimistic self figured that maybe we were both just desperate enough not to ask too many questions.
I mentioned the situation to KW, who promptly told me to drop Chloe.
It did seem very fishy…but what if? What about that tiny percentage of a chance that this might be a real person looking for a home? I wanted to give her a home!! [Once she paid me that is.] I just wanted to believe in the goodness inside a stranger! So I continued the communication.
I found the titles of her emails really funny.
After talking to B about the scam possibility, he suggested that I try to verify her identity. If she was coming here for medical research, she’s most likely affiliated with the University and would have a university email, right? So I tried. I even deleted the posting from Craisglist like she asked. [Sometimes I’m gullible. I don’t know. I reposted it the next day though.]
I then received this convoluted, incoherent mess, along with another email.
I tried again with the identity thing while playing along with what I suspected to be a charade but hoped would turn out for the best.
Chloe totally ignored my questions, instead sending me a short email followed by a massive one.
The second one was so clearly a copy/paste job. Unlike the first few emails I received from her, this one didn’t have either my name in the beginning nor hers at the end. And why would her travel agent inexplicably live in Addison, IL? I had half a mind to drive up there myself and punch him in the face. When KW asked me why I bothered communicating with such an obvious scam, I realized that I was simply curious as to where this situation would go.
Still, curiosity has to end somewhere, and I began to simmer at the thought that someone thought he or she could dupe me so easily. I mean, in the first email sent through Craigslist, it says very prominently, “AVOID SCAMS BY DEALING LOCALLY” and “Avoid: wiring money.” I was foolish enough to believe in this glimmer of hope at first, but not anymore. So I sent a final email.
After that, there were no more emails from RIVERA Chloe. Sad day.
So I’m still looking for a subleaser. I’m sad that the deal with Chloe didn’t work out, but at least I got a fun conversation with AC about it.