Monday, February 14, 2011

I might have been scammed by a deaf lady...

...and why I don't really care...

It's a funny thing when someone knocks on your door in the middle of the night. One half of my perks up--one of my many friends is here for an impromptu visit!--but the other half is gripped with terror--murderer, rapist, bill collector, oh god oh god oh god. Turns out that our unexpected visitor tonight was neither.

She knocks on my door, completely unassuming, probably not a murderer, but I'm still a bit tense (I blame procedural cop dramas for my fear of strangers). I try to say hello, but she instantly makes the signal for, "I can't hear you, nor can I speak to tell you that I can't hear you."

Okay, this is going to be a new experience for me. She mimes writing on paper and I rush inside to grab my sketchpad and a pen. In immaculate, but nervous handwriting she scrawls a message for me:

A hastily drawn and poorly photographed sketch of the event.

Sorry to bother, my truck ran out, can you help w/ gas, cause I need to pick up my kids     I have $$ but won't make it to [nearby town], truck is diesel
Of course I'm inclined to believe her. So my girlfriend and I scramble around the house, looking for extra cash, and come up with five dollars and change to give her. She waits really patiently and politely outside the front door as we make fools of ourselves, rushing around the small apartment. We give her the wad of cash and she nods and signs, "Thank you." Again, super polite, courteous, the whole bit.

A quick point to the nearest gas station and she starts off, on her merry way.

But this, dear readers, is where the plot potentially thickens. My girlfriend, expressing her bemusement at this story, begins to relate it with our friends online. We're not the first to be visited by deaf lady. Apparently she's made a business out of this little transaction.

Now, I might normally have been dismayed at this news, maybe even a little angry, but tonight I'm not. In fact, I'm disappointed that [girlfriend] told me that part of the story. Let me tell you why.

This encounter was a win-win scenario for both parties involved. She got five bucks and maybe a reassurance of peoples' decency (or gullibility, but I'm hoping for the best here), and we got to feel like fifteen minute heroes for helping somebody out. That, and it added some spice to what would have otherwise been just another night sitting at our computers (in this case we were both writing essays).

So I guess the moral of the story here is: Good on ya, deaf lady.


  1. The real question is, is she really deaf or is the disability part of the psychological plot in her scheme?

    There a couple of guys that walk around parking lots in my area with little business cards and pencils. The walk up and politely hand you one of each. The business card explains that he is deaf and that he is selling pencils to pay the bills. I've often wondered if these guys were really deaf at all - if they had regular hearing, people would probably be much less inclined to give them a couple of bucks for a pencil (I imagine).

  2. That's something interesting to think about. From what I gathered from her, though, she was either legitimately hearing disabled or able to do a damn good impression. But either way, I guess the moral remains the same.