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Diatribe: Caveat Emptor – Let The Monkey Buyer Beware.


monkeys-for-saleCaveat emptor.

One of the only Latin phrases that I ever learned, or that I still remember, is the phrase “caveat emptor” which translates to “let the buyer beware”.  Over the years, remembering this phrase has saved me from making a poor decision on more than one occasion.  Similarly, “if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is” has become a motto in my family.

Odds are, we’ve all fallen for a gimmick of some kind at one time or another.  I’m guilty of more than one Sea Monkeys purchase.  Virtually anything that’s advertised during late night television in the As Seen On TV genre, where “just pay separate shipping and handling” really means give us extra cash and we’ll throw a second one in the box,  should be suspect.

Our In Boxes would quickly become full of these offers if not for SPAM filters.  “Free vacations” are usually just sales events.  Even legitimate offerings like those provided by Groupon eventually expire.  Why do we think we can get something for nothing?

Naturally, the internet is loaded with “too good to be true” offers.  This week, a twenty-five-year old woman in Battle Creek, Michigan certainly did not heed the wisdom of caveat emptor.  She and her roommate tried to buy a pet monkey from Cameroon from what they thought to be a reputable website and received pictures and information about monkeys.  After the seller assured them that a monkey valued at $350 could be purchased for only $50, they agreed to pay the requested amount and expected to get a monkey in return.

Caveat emptor.

But then the monkey seller raised his price and, having a proverbial fish on his hook that he wanted to reel it in, demanded additional payment.  The roommates paid an additional two hundred dollars.  Then they sent another one hundred dollar payment.  Still, the monkey seller demanded more money for a cage, license and shots.

They must have REALLY wanted a monkey

Eventually, they contacted authorities who told them they believe the website is a scam and not to be optimistic about getting their money back … or a monkey.

Caveat emtor – let the monkey buyer beware!

Have YOU ever been scammed?


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From → Diatribes

  1. Did they get the proverbial monkey off their back? :>)


  2. I’ve been this gullible…never. But it’s stories like this that make you happy to be a blogger.


  3. My Dad is famous for ‘There is no such thing as a free lunch’. He is also famous for ‘look there’s a dead tree!’ – trying to distract my brother and I from being crabby at each other – it worked and we cracked up and use it on our kids to this day.


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