More Tele-Phun! $8000 worth this time!

Actually, this started over in GQ, but then I got to thinking about it and even if they’re legit this is now officially a rant. Here goes:

Well, here it is, post 501, and as luck would have it, I’m back on my Telephone Solicitation soapbox! Weee!

This one, however, ALMOST sounded legit. Almost… so I’m askin’ y’all: Did I just miss out on a good thing, or a bad thing?

First off, some background…

I hate, hate, HATE telemarketers. Oh, not you, individual telemarketer who is reading this… unless you’ve actually called me at some point. No, I hate the telemarketing industry, and I have declared ‘war’ on them. Geurilla war, of a sort, as I can really only target those who target me first… anyway.

So, as part of my campaign, I use certain ‘tags’ in all my financial dealings… fake names or addresses that serve to tell me that this person got my information from such-and-so.

In this particular instance, the caller asked for a “Mr. Bob Fmunky”. This is not my name, this isn’t even close to my name, this is one of those tags I mentioned. So, of course, that’s when my ears perked up.

Yesterday, midafternoon, call comes in. “Hello, Mr Fmunky? I am calling to inform you that you’ve been offered a grant in the amount of $6000, could you just confirm some information?”

I hung up. Are you kidding me? Call me up and wanna give me $6000… riiiight.

Then they called me again today, 'bout 10 minutes ago. This time I dug for a bit more information. “Well, ok, yeah I’m Bob. Look, if you’re real, you’ve got a website, right? Right. What is it?”

“Oh, you’re a beer company? Wonderful… send me $6000 worth of beer please.”

No, sorry, wrong address, Mr. Fmunky. Try

Ahh… and there it is. An actual official grants-related website.

So, back to the phone… “You wanna give me $6000? And I don’t ever have to pay it back? Great! I’ll come pick it up, where you at?”

Ahh, but no, it doesn’t work that way… there’s an account transfer fee I have to authorize first. In the amount of $257.

Oh, sure, hang on, lemme get that account number for you and I’ll… hey! Wait a minute!

I ask if, since they’re so keen on giving me the money anyway, they can’t just take it out of that?

No, Mr Fmunky, we don’t work that way…

Well, pal, I don’t work that way either. Click

But, well, the website had a .gov… not that the caller really knew that, of course… so maybe, MAYBE, it was legit?

What do you think?

And, more importantly… who did I give the name “Bob Fmunky” to? SOMEONE out there wants my money, bad!

I had one of these guys call me the other day…at 7:15 in the fucking morning. I work nights, so as early as 7:15 AM seems to you, for me it’s more like calling me at 4 in the morning.

She had an Indian accent, so I assume she was calling from an India call center…she started her spiel, and I just interrupted her and said “Do you realize it’s 7:15 in the fucking morning?” At this point she stammered a bit and said “Would you like me to call you back later?”

My response was “I really don’t think you need to fucking bother after waking me up at this hour.”

I’m not a pleasant person to wake up, just ask my hubby. =)

I am truly growing to hate the sound of my own name, burbled at me in a thick Indian accent.

I mean, I’m even starting to cop an attitude about Indians, and that’s just wrong. All the folks from India that *I’ve ever actually met face to face * were “hardworking immigrant” types, salt of the earth, lovely people, working their butts off to make it in a culture which to them is just as weird as suspenders on a snake. Not a bad thing to say about them.

…but I am truly beginning to cop a major attitude about the ones who stayed home and got high-paying telemarking jobs.

And now I must work hard at restricting the urge to hang up every time someone horribly mispronounces my name at me in a thick Indian accent. After all, they might be tech support, or customer service. They might be my bank, or my lawyer’s answering service.

But the minute those sonzabitches try to SELL me something, I hang the hell up.

My guess is that it was not telemarketers, it was a con. Variation on the Nigeria email, but you think it is legit since there is a .gov website. Of course, the guy screwed up by telling you it was .com first.

Why can’t

you write in




To all appearances, is a legitimate site. Also from here

Nobody else can use them at all. Somebody is running a scam, and using the gov site to look legit.

If you’ve got a phone number or other identifying data on the scammers, you could report them:

And they apparently think you’re stupid, too. I like the fake name idea. I’m doing that the next time I subscribe to anything. If I get any mail with the fake name on it, I can just pitch it.