Many years ago I took a fun, impromptu weekend trip to Los Angeles. I convinced a friend to join me. We got off the plane, rented a convertible and decided to let loose. We stopped to eat, threw our bags in the trunk of the convertible, and walked across the street to the restaurant.
Shortly after a delicious lunch we got back to the car and saw our bags had been stolen.
I let my guard down because we had left New York City and I thought the rest of the world was safe. Ah my naivete caused laughter and chuckles from the police as he asked how two girls from NYC could get robbed.
We spent the rest of the weekend in the same clothes we flew in on. To tell the truth it was kind of freeing. No stressing about what to wear just what we had. We laughed, had fun, saw some sights, visited a friend and made the most of our time. The police eventually found our bags in a dumpster and we got back in a plane a little shell shocked.
Fast forward thirty years later. I consider myself to be pretty tech savvy and a reasonable judge of character. Maybe too trusting sometimes. And this weekend the police were at my door trying kindly not to chuckle at the fact that I threw all reason and caution to the wind when I gave up too much of my information to a very unsafe person. I’m not even sure he was clever. There were red flags everywhere and I chose to ignore them all.
It started simple. He asked if I had Zelle. Upon investigating my bank does but I don’t understand it. But I said yes. Then he said he would pay now. Wouldn’t you wait to see the product I am selling? And I gave my address to him.
Next he said Zelle needed extra money because I wasn’t a business. So he sent me extra money if I promised to return it. Could he trust me?
My stomach is queasy retelling this story on how quickly this escalated. And how I missed so many signs. Basic things like seeing his profile wasn’t right. He had shirtless pictures of himself on his profile. His email didn’t match his name. The Zelle address didn’t match Zelle. How did I fall for it all?
Because I just didn’t believe people were like that. I wanted to believe he just wasn’t the best at social media.
I wanted to believe the best. But then I shared too much. Then I was afraid. Then I went too far. And then I was ashamed.
There were several takeaways from my New Years Eve experience. First is it’s a lot easier to judge when you aren’t in the middle of a situation. If you saw the Instagram profile of this man you would wonder if I needed to be drug tested. Second is realizing how quickly fear stops us from thinking rationally. And third is if I can get scammed, how easily a teenager or an elderly person can.
I am not sharing my experience for attention for myself. I am sharing it for the same reason I share a lot of my experiences- to help the next person.
The next time we judge someone, maybe we stop and realize in fearful situations we don’t always do our best.
To quote Sgt. Phil Esterhaus from Hill Street Blues “Let’s be careful out there.”
A social media challenge is going on. It’s called the “ten year challenge”. There is that little nagging suspicion that this is in part a ploy to get people to post pictures so their facial recognition software can be up to date. However my initial thought... [More]
It’s the end of 2021 and there is a strong possibility of snow on New Year’s Eve. I can’t think of a better way to end the year than with hope and moisture. Some people may say it won’t happen. The odds are in their favor honestly as we live in a very... [More]
It’s here! It’s Christmas! It’s the birth of Jesus. It’s when astrologers and farm animals treated Jesus better than religious people. It’s lights, music and people giving. And I am NOT in the Spirit right now. I prayed, I have given. I have... [More]
Don’t forget your raisin’. I laugh because when I first heard this, I thought what do raisins have to do with the storyline of the show I was watching - Country Music by Ken Burns. Then I got it. Don’t forget where you come from. I remember growing up... [More]
There’s never enough time! Look at the obituary section. No one escapes. Young and old pass on, all before their time. I have hopes and dreams for my family and myself. I look back at when I was young and single and making disastrous life choices that led me into... [More]
I am the first to admit, I can get irritated with everyone from my family to people in town. Maybe they commented on something on social media I didn’t care for or maybe I didn’t love a look they gave me. Maybe they said something without thinking or I did. Maybe... [More]
Here we are, Thanksgiving! And then Christmas and then New Years. Whew I am tired already! LOL Thanksgiving - a time to be thankful, a time for gratitude. I like how in Spanish it is Dia del accion de gracias, the action of thanks. To me it says thankfulness is... [More]
If you want to be great at something you need practice right? I tell my daughter a lot of things like work hard, be kind, be yourself. But sometimes I am not sure I always practice what I preach. So I decided to go after my dream of writing a book. Over the weekend, I sent a... [More]
The Lady Bulldogs were undefeated during the Border Wars, defeating Eads on Friday, 42-7 and Walsh on Saturday 62-5, bringing their record to 3-1. But the winner wasn’t announced until Tuesday evening. Syracuse Athletic Director Josh Johnson explained, “It came down... [More]
Monday night at home at the Herndon Gym, the Junior High boys swept Lakin! Head coach Vance Keller said, “We’re a young team with only six eighth graders and 12 seventh graders. We’ve had six total that started the season with injuries so we haven’t had... [More]
Three Syracuse High School volleyball seniors were honored on Tuesday, October 5, during the volleyball tournament at Syracuse. Kaetlin Thomeczek, daughter of Joe and Dami Thomeczek has played volleyball since the third grade, playing with Syracuse Youth Activities Association... [More]
Head coach Steve Navarro said, “The coaching staff has really enjoyed working with this group of kids this year. They have been putting in hard work despite some less than stellar conditions for practice and meets. We are excited to see what they can do now that we are... [More]
Baseball: The Bulldogs faced the Goodland Cowboys at home on Thursday, April 8, losing game one, 2-22 and game two, 1-17. Head Coach Dustin Doze said the Bulldogs really struggled throwing strikes again and they had too many errors. We need to clean things up if we want to... [More]
One year ago, athletes and coaches were beginning practice for their spring sport, some practicing during spring break, others enjoying the break from school. Soon they found out their break was extended a week, some with great joy, others with apprehension. Then came the unfortunate... [More]
Substate began and ended quickly but these Varsity teams left it all out on the court. In heartbreaking last second baskets, our basketball season was over. The boys lost by two points in the last five seconds and the girls lost by three. A wrap up of the season will come in... [More]
The SHS Bulldogs faced the 4-A Holcomb Longhorns for the final home game of the season, with the varsity teams unable to win. The boys will be the number three seed in first sub state match up at home, Monday, March 1, against the number 6 seed, Stanton County. This will be the... [More]
On Tuesday, January 18, 2022, the KDHE announced that as of February 1, 2022, COVID-19 contact outreach and monitoring would be discontinued. The KDHE contact tracing staff will be reassigned to contact investigations. The letter added that individuals who are positive... [More]
How can 3,150 square feet provide so much to a community? It takes ingenuity, tenacity, and funding. And a dedicated Library Director. Stop by the Hamilton County Library and you will find a multitude of people from all walks of life and all ages patronizing this welcoming... [More]
Dr. Erol Ozan, an information technology professor and author, understood how life’s journey is often richer through the unscripted and unplanned moments and destinations that seem like lost moments when he was quoted saying, “Some beautiful paths can’t be discovered... [More]
As a farmer, being a good steward of the land is one of the most important responsibilities. This term is often used in conservation circles, but some people may not even realize what that term means. Simply, a steward is a person whose job is to manage or look after the land... [More]
Wind gusts from 75-85 mph possible. Please take precautions! From the US National Weather Service in Dodge City - ...High Impact Intense Wind Wednesday... Here is the timeline for the expected windstorm on Wednesday. South winds will remain elevated and gusty Tuesday night... [More]
Majestic, fabulous, magical are a few words to describe the setting for the annual City of Syracuse’s Parade of Lights on Wednesday, December 1 on Main Street and the annual appearance of Santa at the Hamilton County Library. Keeping with a long-standing tradition,... [More]
The Hamilton County Hospital is reporting a shortage of lab personnel, which is compounded by a severe nationwide shortage of experienced lab technicians. This shortage has resulted in a delay in their ability to quickly obtain certain lab values. As a result, the... [More]
Handicapped platforms have recently been added to the seating area at the Herndon Gym, thanks to four high school seniors, Yriel Ibarra, Keith Hedberg, Jaden Grilliot, Connor Ochs. Superintendent Paul Larkin explained the project was brought about with input from someone who... [More]
Richard L. James died quietly in his sleep on January 13, 2021 from complications arising from a leg infection. Richard or “Mr. Rich” as his family called him was born in Syracuse, KS on July 9, 1941 to Albert and Rowena James. He grew up in Syracuse and... [More]
Elvin G. “Tex” Hazen was born May 5, 1948, in Holly, Colorado to Willie and Florence (Wear) Hazen. He passed away at his home in Holcomb, Kansas on Saturday, January 8, 2022. On December 31, 1967, he married Lynda M.... [More]
Betty L. Warner went to her heavenly home on January 3, 2022. At the time of her death, she was at the Holiday Resort Care Center in Emporia, Kansas. She was formerly of Ulysses, Kansas and was 88 at the time of passing. Betty was born on November 10, 1933 in Granada, Colorado... [More]
Janis Maureen Baker Janis Maureen Baker, 88, Hays, died Wednesday, January 5, 2022 at Rush County Memorial Hospital. She was born May 11, 1933 in Scott City, the daughter of Maurice and Ruby (Couch) Liggett. Janis was salutatorian of her class at Syracuse High School... [More]
Curtis Allen Dowell, left this Earth on Monday January 3rd in Springfield, MO at 8:30 AM, at the age of 61. Curt had lead a rich and adventurous life, he was a person to enjoy life to the fullest. He was born December 29, 1960 in Syracuse, KS to Charles & Gaylene Dowell.... [More]
Sherry Lou (Reinert) Finlay, age 68, passed away at the Kearny County Hospital in Lakin, Kansas on Monday, December 27, 2021. She was born on May 25, 1953 in Garden City, Kansas the daughter of Leslie Harry Reinert and Marjorie June (Sneath) Reinert. She started her journey... [More]
Curtis Clifton Young, 80, died Friday, December 24, 2021, at his home in Lakin, Kansas. He was born June 17, 1941, in Lakin, Kansas the son of Otis & Helen (Uhler) Young. Curtis has been a lifetime resident of Lakin. He... [More]
A funeral service for Gene Wright will be held at 11:00 a.m, on Tuesday, December 28, 2021, at Valley Memorial Funeral Chapel in Holly, Colorado. Interment will follow in Coolidge Cemetery. Warren Eugene “Gene” Wright, age 76, of Holly, departed this life... [More]
©2022 The Syracuse Journal. Powered by Pluto Sites.