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It Costs Nothing To Be Polite, Even To Scammers

, , , | Legal | June 8, 2022

In my senior year of high school, I got into a fender bender. It was nothing serious, but my mom told me to be more open to answering unfamiliar numbers in case it had to do with the other driver’s insurance.

About a week later, I was at my school waiting to go on the senior trip when I got a phone call from an unfamiliar number. It only took a few moments to realize it was a scam, though, because even though they started out the spiel with cars, they started asking me about my BMW’s license plate. We did not and still do not own a BMW.

The buses arrived mid-spiel, and we were told to get on the bus.

At the time, I was a very anxious teenager who had been taught to always be polite, so in my somewhat flustered state, I interrupted the guy talking to me.

Me: “Um, I’m sorry, but I can’t really talk right now, since I’m busy.”

This was true since I was walking to the buses at that exact moment.

Me: “Could I call you back later?”

There was a brief pause.

Guy: “Okay, ma’am. Looking forward to your call.”

Me: “Thank you. Have a nice day.”

There was another brief pause.

Guy: *Surprised* “Uh, thank you. You, too, ma’am.”

Yes, you read that right: I thanked a scammer for trying to scam me and told him to have a nice day.

I hung up the phone, immediately blocked the number, and went on to enjoy that particular trip immensely, but I’m still vaguely amused that my gut reaction to answering a scammer’s call was to tell the truth and be polite.

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