This is inspired by “You just got cheated” a brilliant well researched book by Dr Sibichen Mathew.

The introduction in the book propelled me to recall the umpteen occasions in which I have royally fallen prey to fraudsters, been swindled, scammed out of money! But let me tell you it is never lonely in that realm, never an elite and exclusive club, as I am sure most of you have taken people at face value with disastrous outcomes!

Be it the autowallah or the conductor in the bus, who does not render the change, the shopkeeper who charges exorbitant, or the telecom service providers who swipe clean your account by activating the value added services, from the petty cons to the massive bamboozles, despite not being the so very gullible, have experienced it all!

The rip off journey takes me back to the growing up years when our excited bus journey to paternal hometown was cut short with rampant pickpockets who cleverly aim at dad’s trouser pockets, and the deft fingers in the jostling crowd goes unnoticed. How we manage to reach our destination is left to the reader’s imagination. My dad emerged smarter and his counter strategies was the customizing of his trousers with secret hidden pockets that stashed some valuable currency notes and not weeds!

Then there are the fly by night businesses who have taken us for a ride, these thorough bred professionals of the game, filch your private information and leave you high and dry. The fascination for travel led us to become RCI members, the largest condominium business in the world and for its upkeep, there was this annual membership which we were faithfully paying up to keep it active despite our inability to avail the services. In those days, there was no internet, no online payment and dependent on banking instruments or cash. When the payment was due in a particular year, a person came knocking at our door, we let him in as he said he was from xyz company, explained the offers that were available to us if we renewed the subscription for different tenures, there was no way we could believe that he did not represent the company as he was fluent, with gift of the gab and inexplicable marketing skills, well the fool and his money are soon parted and by the time the scales fell from our eyes, he had vanished without a trace.

The quest for underground water in our backyard is a story weaved in deception. The borewell company had monkey business going on and for months, as we waited for the springs of water to gush out of the earth, like parched souls, the pilfering company made good with a sizeable sum of money and showed us a clean pair of heels!!

One is always at the short end of the stick when it comes to property dealings and documentation, getting woefully cheated in broad daylight with full knowledge of the same. For an official fee for any document transfer which is around 100 bucks, these leeches suck 10x and our vows to fight corruption and bribery starts and ends there!

A seamlessly never ending list of incidents from the innocuous to a money heist, I have lost count of the numerous times of being hoodwinked.  What are your experiences? Can you relate to my ordeals and adventures?


15 thoughts on “Bamboozled!

  1. Getting cheated seems to run in the family. Was relieved of Rs 500 in the 80s by an artful cheat in the train while leaving Panvel station. After decades I see the humour in such situations as is brought out in this delightful piece

    Liked by 1 person

    • Oh..yes..I do remember that incident brilliantly narrated by you, wanted to bring out more but did not want the post to be too long and tiring a read!
      Thanks Appa for being the inspiration!


    • Some have the innate ability to cheat and trick because of our unsuspecting and credulous behaviour!
      I do wonder whether these people have a conscience at all.
      Thanks Jitendra for getting the connect

      Liked by 1 person

  2. You can draw comfort in the thought that you are not alone and in good company of the majority of people. Leave alone the costly homes and expensive equipments, we are cheated in the daily needs we buy in their weights and quality. Eternal vigilance would be of no avail as you can buy nothing on your terms.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Of tricksters and fraudsters who are unabashed in their indulgences!
      Sometimes we do end up barking the wrong tree when we start suspecting the upright people due to the deluge of frauds around us.
      But falling hook, line and sinker in today’s world is even more easy with the digital era!


  3. A pleasant read. I found myself drifting off trying to figure out if I had ever been conned. Guess I must consider myself lucky


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