June 21, 2006
Another crushing blow to my naivete
The other day, I happened upon a small North Face backpack at a local store, and it was marked down to $13. I have an undying passion for luggage, backpacks and purses, so I immediately snatched it up, looking around furtively to make sure no one was going to try and grab it out of my hot little hands.

Upon my arrival home, I decided it was actually too small for my purposes (a daypack for traveling), and that I wanted the next larger size, so I sold it on eBay for $40. I know, that rocks!

Then I went on eBay and found the pack I actually wanted, and purchased it for $35. Things were going pretty well for me, until I got my new pack in the mail and discovered that it was obviously a fake. It never even entered my mind that things on eBay would be fake. Which is astonishing, because L once got me a fake Tiffany's bracelet on eBay, and we had to send it back and get a real one. I am not a fast learner folks. Anyway, I emailed the seller and told him I wanted my money back, to which he responded 'sure, just send it back for a refund.'

And then I started thinking (about time, I know). If he has my money, and he has my bag, what do I have, other than a big freakin' "Loser" stamped on my forehead? So I sent him this email this morning:

Dear FreakSeller (names changed to protect the sorry bleepbleep),

It's a difficult proposition to ask me to send it back to you first without a refund. Normally I will send a defective item back before expecting a refund or exchange, but in this case you sold me a fake, whether knowingly or not, and I was ripped off. I will not, of course, place myself in even more risk of additional financial loss by being the first to send.

My other recourse is to file a Pay-pal and E-Bay complaint and go through the proper authorities to reclaim my money. Keep in mind that there is a record of your numerous transactions regarding the sale of other knock-offs to other E-bay members and I may be in liberty to contact your prior customers for joint action. Note that you are in violation of 18 USCS § 2320 (it pays to have relatives in law enforcement). In addition, you have violated federal mail fraud statute 18 USCS § 1341. If you'd prefer, process a full refund to my Pay-Pal account immediately and if you choose to have the bag shipped back, you must pay for shipping.

Regards, Slush

18 USCS § 2320 (2004) § 2320. Trafficking in counterfeit goods or services (a) Whoever intentionally traffics or attempts to traffic in goods or services and knowingly uses a counterfeit mark on or in connection with such goods or services shall, if an individual, be fined not more than $ 2,000,000 or imprisoned not more than 10 years, or both, and, if a person other than an individual, be fined not more than $ 5,000,000. In the case of an offense by a person under this section that occurs after that person is convicted of another offense under this section, the person convicted, if an individual, shall be fined not more than $ 5,000,000 or imprisoned not more than 20 years, or both, and if other than an individual, shall be fined not more than $ 15,000,000

I actually found all that legaleese online and borrowed it (it was there for this precise purpose), and I don't actually have any family members in law enforcement. However, Mr. FreakSeller doesn't know that. I'll let you know what he has to say for himself.

In all fairness, I'm actually taking out some pent-up frustrations on Mr. FreakSeller. Someday, remind me to tell you about our family trip to a certain government office in regards to the business of adoption, and the meanest rent-a-cop in the world who works there. We had a rollicking good time, and I'd love to tell you all about the whole painful affair, but I think I'll wait until I have all the papers I need in hand, just in case there are some rogue government employees (besides my husband) who are fans of my blog. "Yeah...Sorry Slush...You can't adopt because I really didn't appreciate what you said about me on your blog. Sorry about that! Better luck next time..."

Also, I'm not far enough removed to see the humor in it just yet. I thought I would be by now, but I guess I am just maxed out on stressful situations. My house looks like I successfully built an atom bomb in the living room. It's a good thing we are moving Saturday, because I have to leave this chaos really soon or there is going to be some serious flipping out going on. Some (and by that I mean my husband and child) may suggest that this flippage is already well under way. To them, I say "Mommy needs a brownie."

*** Updated*** My paypal account was refunded. Rock on.

Blogger lawyerchik said...
Way to stick to your guns, Slush! You're right about eBay, too: sometimes, you have to watch whom you trade with!

Of course there are the good ones too, like this truly terrific eBayer who sold me an awesome pink bag, and that went extremely well!! ;)

Blogger cjoy said...
We might be moving Saturday, too! Of course, now that I've SAID it, it will likely change. Argh. (I'll update my blog about it by tomorrow afternoon, not that you'll have lots of time to leisurely read up on my progress or lack of it!)
Lots of luck on YOUR move!

Blogger Miss Bad Penny said...
I spotted some very pretty pieces of accessories from eBay that were sold at VERY reasonable prices, but I have always been too paranoid about buying things off the internet. Maybe I'm just not that a trusting person.

Sorry for your unhappy experience. But that email?? Awesome!!

Blogger Hillary said...
you GO girl!! :)

Blogger Amy said...
Wow!! Good job!! Man, I would love to have you sic Verizon for me! lol

I'll be praying for you with the move. Go have a brownie!!!

Blogger Carbon said...
Rock ON GIRL!!!! THAT is an AWESOME update. wOO hOO!!!

Blogger Amber said...
HAHAHA! Ebay justice rules!
You go girl!

Blogger shay v. said...
Okay, that's it. I'm having you write all my professional type letters for me!! Very articulate, girl!!!! YOU GO!! Get down wit'cyour bad self!!!