I was recently scammed out of $1,500 by Danny, a man I believed to be my friend. I’m glad it happened as it was a tremendous learning experience. The warning signs were everywhere. I didn’t notice them (justified them away is probably a more accurate phrase) because I enjoyed Danny’s company. I didn’t want what I told myself were minor character flaws to sour a fun friendship.
Danny’s picture should be on the Alpha Male cereal box: He’s tall, dark, aggressive, handsome, gregarious, cocky and socially adept. He can’t take two steps without hitting on a girl. He drives a black Lexus and hangs out at the hottest night clubs in Chicago. Danny really has his shit together.
Or so it seemed . . .
1. The First Thing Danny Told Me Was A Lie
I was new to the big city and Danny was giving me a tour, taking me to some of his favorite eateries. We stopped by this great Mexican place that serves $1.50 tacos every Wednesday. During lunch, I asked Danny how old he was and he told me he was 32. A few months later I heard a woman wish him a “happy 36th birthday”. I laughed and asked him why he told me he was 32.
He said, “I’ll tell you whatever I want to tell you.”
I’m still not sure why he did this. Like, what did he stand to gain by subtracting three years from his age? Maybe he is so use to lying to women about how old he is he just does it as a reflex now. Or maybe he thought I wouldn’t want to do business with him if I knew he was quite older than me.
2. Danny Immediately Glommed Onto Me
Danny called me every single day for months on end after our first meeting. We discussed business ideas for hours. We talked girls and money. We talked life. We went bar hopping and picked up girls in night clubs and hung out in pool halls. We went out to eat constantly. I really enjoyed the guy’s company because he seemed so motivated and full of life. Although, in the back of my mind I thought it was weird that our friendship had gone from 0 to 60 overnight.
3. Danny Lives Well Above His Means
After I realized what Danny did for a living and estimated how much money he made I found it weird that the dude drove a new Lexus. I also couldn’t understand how he could afford to go out to eat every single day. And not just with me. He probably takes three different girls out to eat every week. Then, I found out he lived with his mom. Something didn’t add up.
4. Danny Is Super Ungrateful
I let Danny borrow $500 dollars like two months after I met him. He paid me back a week later so it wasn’t a big deal. Then, Danny and I went to a bar with a group of friends. When we I arrived, I realized I had forgotten my wallet. I asked Danny to let me borrow 50 bucks so I could buy drinks. He was like, “Hell no, dude. Buy your own damn drinks. I’m not your bitch.” I thought he was joking, but he wasn’t. I said, “Are you serious? After everything I’ve done for you, you won’t let me borrow 50 goddamn bucks?” He said, “This is different, bro. You gotta remember to bring your wallet.” I was flabbergasted. I finally harangued Danny into buying my drinks, but he wouldn’t let me hold the money. He would go up to the bar and buy every drink for me. Then, he made a big production of it every time he handed me the drink. “Look everyone. I have to buy Askari drinks because he’s too broke to afford Heinekens.” He had the nerve to call me “broke” after I let him borrow $500.
4. Danny Always Has Some Get-Rich-Quick Scheme
Whether it is multilevel marketing nonsense or bullshit concert promotion or border-line illegal money gram schemes, Danny is not big on developing genuine skills or working hard.
5. Danny Has A 200+ Notch Count
I’m not saying this is a bad thing. I mean, what man doesn’t want to have that much sexual variety? However, the more I live, the more I notice that the men who really, really clean up with women are some of the most sociopathic men you will ever meet. We all know many women are attracted to criminals and con artists.
6. Danny Loves Crazy Women
He actually enjoys them as people. And he attracts them like a magnet. It’s as if every other date he goes on is cut short because the woman has to be dragged out of the restaurant for drunken and belligerent behavior.
7. Danny Really Doesn’t Have That Many Friends
Besides the women who follow him around like ducklings, Danny doesn’t really have that many friends. Which is weird for such a charismatic guy. When it comes to men, Danny eventually rubs them the wrong way or does something to piss them off.
8. Danny Has Horrible Taste In Absolutely Everything
He listens to nothing but Top 40 and gangster rap. He’s also obsessed with professional wrestling. This might not be a tride-and-true sign of a con artist. However, there is something a little off about a man in his mid-thirties who knows every Taylor Swift song by heart.
I’m not well-versed in global economics. So, I don’t know if Greece is headed on a one-way trip to the dark ages. But when I read phrases like “power black-outs”, “salaries won’t be paid” and “won’t be able to import vital goods” an eerie question springs up in my mind.
What would my neighborhood look like six months after a total American economic meltdown?
The question is eerie because I can see the answer in crisp 1080p resolution. The question is also eerie because at some point this 3,000 mile wide mountain of surplus resources called America will come crashing back down to earth. China and Japan are going to want their money back one of these days. No shopping spree lasts forever. So, what would my neck of the woods look like when the grocery stores are empty and the street lights stop working? Well, imagine your idea of a utopia. Picture your personal version of heaven on earth. Now, picture the opposite and you have a decent idea of what my “community” will be like after the collapse.
Dark figures roam blackened alleys with butcher knives and unregistered handguns. The inside of Walmart looks like an empty airplane hanger. Jewel was picked dry during a single day two months back. Pablo climbs through Maria’s kitchen window clutching a hammer, a bandanna shielding his face. “¿Dónde está la comida?!” Maria emphatically insists she is not hording food. Pablo knows she’s lying. Her kids are still alive. They’re still fat too. Maria has food to spare or these kids have the worst glandular issues in human history. Couches and mattresses are burnt to ash. Better to sleep on the floor than lose half your toes due to frostbite. Police disappear. 911 goes straight to voice mail. Emaciated minorities wave machetes and chase city rabbits down the sidewalk. Women are dragged into murky basements and gang raped by candle light. Pablo is recognized as king of the block after beating three of his neighbors to death. Jackie eats her dog.
I’m almost positive all of this would go down.
And that is why a man needs a countryside bunker. Someplace rural and secluded to hide your loved-ones when the sky starts falling. Water. Food. Guns. Ammo. Shelter. Five uninterrupted miles of vacant soybean fields between you and the guy next door. Enjoying quality time with the kids while people cannibalize their neighbors three counties over. When the world is breaking apart, the absolute last place you want to be is in an anonymous, urban setting. It’s crowded. No one knows their neighbors. Everyone is on welfare. Diversity and single motherhood atomizes entire communities. People are not prepared for tomorrow. Forget about six months from now. So, when the welfare checks fail to show, it is only a matter of time before a “community” turns into what Thomas Hobbs used to call a “war of all against all”. Not good times.
I wonder if Craig’s List is selling any used countryside survival bunkers on the cheap.
I work as a door-to-door salesman in rough Chicago neighborhoods. Part of my job is interacting with people I consider to be abusive and degenerate. I usually don’t express my negative opinions. Scolding people for their lack of character is generally pointless, because confrontations rarely inspire evildoers to stop hurting people.
Rodell gives me a guided tour of his dog cages and fighting pit. I simply nod and say “that’s interesting”. I do not tell him that people who force pit bulls to fight to the death give me the creeps. That would be worse than pointless. Rodell would waste my time telling me why I’m wrong. My condemnation might spoil our rapport, blowing the sale out of the water. I don’t tell Dashanique that it bothers me when she calls her four-year-old son a little nigga. I pretend I don’t hear her.
Nothing sort of stomach-turning moral revulsion will make me turn my back on a paying customer. I’m talking about the kind of situation where I leave for fear that if I don’t, I may not be able to control myself, lashing out in violence. This happened twice.
I was in University Park (I know that’s not the city) putting the finishing touches on a sale when my customer asked me if I wanted to have sex with her daughter, Tracy. Tracy was a teenage-looking, black albino girl with a severe speech impediment. I felt shocked. It took a while for my brain to register what I was hearing. Tracy’s mother was going on and on about how Tracy “couldn’t get no dick” because she was a freak. Tracy’s three small brothers, along with her father, were mocking her. They said, “Goddamn, Tracy. Don’t nobody want yo ass! Not even the door-to-door guy will fuck you! Hahaha!” I felt sick. Tracy’s mother must have asked me three times if I would care to take her daughters virginity. When I said no, no and no, Tracy snuck over and whispered in my ear, “Why don’t you like me?” I returned the credit card and left without speaking.
I walked out on another sale when a woman in South Holland (I know that’s not the city either) began punching her down syndrome afflicted son in the face over and over again because he wasn’t cleaning the coffee table well enough.
I hope everything turns out okay for these kids. That’s about all that I do, though. I don’t have time to be a hero. I’m just a salesman.
Lend me you imagination:
I want to introduce you to my princely friend, The Wizard. If The Wizard waves his magic wand, you will lose all ability to feel shame, guilt and anxiety for the rest of your life.
No fear of rejection. No sense of loyalty. No burdensome social obligation. No inner judge. No moral concerns whatsoever.
When the Wizard waves his black magic wand you will be what the medical community calls a psychopath. Now and forevermore.
You snatch your girlfriend’s American Express Card. Over the course of a sportive weekend you burn through $3,000 of hijacked credit and successfully pin the whole charade on your lover’s roommate. You feel zero negative emotions about this crime. No self-hatred. No second guessing the betrayal of a woman who trusts you. No pulse increase as you consider the probability of being discovered. No capacity to relate to the sadness of your victims.
Tears flow like rivers of heartache and you fell nothing.
Nothing save the satisfaction of another victory. Nothing but the comfort of knowing you are capable of pursuing your goals with a ruthlessness your rivals dare not fathom.
And for what you’ve lost in conscience you’ve gained in acting chops. Friends, family and coworkers are clueless to your new “magic powers”. Everyone believes you to be your old empathetic self. The sweet boy fighting back tears when Old Yeller got capped. The honest citizen turning up at the police station with a wallet he found on the sidewalk. Thanks to The Wicked Wizard of Wrong is Right you are now a black mamba in a brown bunny suit.
Cold as ice.
Here comes The Wizard. Would you like to meet him?
It’s now or never.
So, do you?
Working as a door-to-door salesman in Chicago has taught me a simple, but very important, fact about human nature:
Nice neighbor hoods make you feel nice.
Bad neighbor hoods make you feel bad.
An attractive environment is like a massage for the brain.
An ugly environment is like getting your brain punched with brass knuckles every four minutes.
Positive people make your soul swell with energy.
Negative people steal your precious life force.
A typical day in a Midwestern ghetto:
1:00 PM –
Vacant houses everywhere. Occupied homes look vacant. Peeling paint. Rotting porches. Broken windows.
1:30 PM –
A dirty man lights a blunt on the dirty sidewalk.
1:45 PM –
A huge woman is punching a dog in the face.
2:00 PM –
A pit bull locks eyes with me through the bay windows of the living room as I approach the house from the drive way. It rams it’s face into the glass. Territorial aggression. This little monster face-rams the glass again and again and again. Blood pours. The owner screams.
I decide to leave.
3:00 PM –
A high school graduation party is underway. Music and barbecue and dancing. A rusted Caprice drives up. A handgun appears from the passenger’s window, aimed at the grey sky. Four shots. Dancing turns to fleeing. Everyone is screaming and the car pulls away.
I decide to leave.
4:00 PM –
A gigantic man answers the door. His eyes light up when he sees it is me.
He’s wearing a woman’s shower cap. Make up. A woman’s bathrobe. Nail polish and woman’s slippers.
“Oh, hey baby. Why don’t you come on inside,”
I decide to leave.
5:00 PM –
I’m inside the living room of the only nuclear family on the block.
The “mother” approaches me with two 100 dollar bills in her hand.
“She a virgin and don’t nobody want her. Fuck dis bitch and da money’s yours.” she says, pointing to her teenage, albino daughter who is sitting on the couch.
“You know the best part? She a V (V being virgin). No one will fuck her cause’ a how she is (albino).”
I look to the father in disbelief and see that he is chuckling like the whole thing is a good-natured joke.
I decide to leave.
I would rather live in an upper class community, ripe with breathtaking architecture and circular driveways lined with luxury cars, where everyone hates me, than be the king of a low income community where every citizen worshiped me as their lord and savior.