Readers' Submissions

To Play Is To Forget The Rules


This is a trailer to Frank’s excellent submission “It’s Okay To Play As Long As You Know The Rules”. But what I would like to discuss is why guys don’t follow Frank’s simple advice, even after they have seen the evidence of a teeruk’s lying and cheating. How could someone who is smart enough to make good living in the world all of a sudden go brain dead. Here is my spin on what’s happening.

You have seen them in your email inboxes and in forums and even on TV. The story goes like this: I (prince or son of the president or son of a wealthy businessman) in a country outside of where you live (Africa or the Middle East, someplace that is in turmoil) have a lot of money (or gold or diamonds) and I desperately need your help to get it out of my country before its confiscated by the bad guys. The better story is when the victim is a young women trying save her family’s fortune from the male bullies of her third world country. Anyway, you know what comes next: a heartfelt plea to send a small amount of money that would help get this fortune out of the country via lawyers or bribing customs officials. If successful, you will get half of this large fortune and, of course, the IRS doesn’t need to know.

The vast majority of us gets less than halfway through this scam story and immediately assigns it to our trash folder. But a small percent keep reading; enough so that this scam and others like, have been around for a long time. They let their imagination take over. “Gosh, think of all the things I could do with that money”, they probably say. Who besides the highly gullible or overly stupid would fall for this? Guess what, some very bright people do everyday; people who in their respective businesses are regarding as savvy players and highly intelligent. How can this possibly happen to these people?

Well, my Dad was a victim of this scam. He was an engineer who had worked in a specialized technical field all his life until retirement. He receives a nice pension and had a little cash put away for a rainy day. One day he started receiving a number of phone calls from one of these con artists and they talked through all the details of the story. After a while, he was convinced they were legitimate and soon his nest egg was on its way to Israel. When my sister and I found out, we immediately called the FBI. They confirmed there was no fortune and that my Dad had been stung. We researched these guys and found out they were a new gang operating in the US. We confronted my Dad with the evidence yet he would still talk to them as they tried to get him to send more money. We then changed his phone number. One day I asked him why he did it. He was financially secure and didn’t need the money. He said he had a dream that if he came into a lot of money, he would give it all away to his family so they would be financially secure. He wanted this dream to come true so much, he was willing to suspend his normally suspicious nature and hear only the scammer’s words.

There are a lot of submissions from guys like my Dad who have a dream; that of being married to this wonderful BG and living happily ever after. What drives this dream? For some it’s great sex but for many others, it is pity for this gentle girl from a family that has nothing but an old shack and mounting bills. That's why the sick buffalo stories are so effective (help feed my family). So, like my Dad and other victims, they continue in spite of the facts. How many submissions have we seen where the guy knows she’s scamming him but continue to go back and give her “one more chance”. All they can hear are her

gentle pleadings. They believe if they try a little harder the BG will magically change from the lying caterpillar to a loving butterfly. Then he will change and become what she has always said about him: a good heart, generous to a fault, and the savior of her family. Soon, his nest egg will be gone as well.

Some of this insight is personal, as I was once stung by a BG some time ago. I escaped with most of my money intact, unlike others, and gave up on a dream I didn’t realize I had: of being the white knight of Thailand's BG's. Is this a genetic condition? I'd better get my sons reading Stickman's site ASAP just in case!

Stickman's thoughts:

Yep, it is odd that so many people get sucked in. Chasing the dream, I guess.