Tuesday, September 17, 2002... Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA
Umph.. .double up.. umph umph! Whew who! Guess who? No, not Sir Mixalot (though most of you seen my karaoke. . . It's me, this time Audacious Adventurer Al getting ready to rake up double trouble this time in Kiwi Adventure Country AND the Land Down Under.
Let me explain how I've arrived at this point of departure for my second Australian adventure beginning tomorrow 9/18. Most of you know I was torn away from the womb of the Aussie world by a so-called friend of 4+ years who stole my identity. This loser ruined my 10- month Aussie adventure by opening 5 credit cards, buying a car, and over-drafting a fraudulent business bank account for a fictitious company I supposedly ran. By simply using my driver's license and social security number he accomplished lots of damage. This guy tried to set me up BIG TIME. I was the perfect candidate: car-less, renting, credit-mature, and a successful computer programmer with a secure job. The creditors liked what they thought was me so much they advanced the other me about $25,000 through various cards at a false address my so-called friend set up. Even more, they gave the so-called me credit at 16.9 APR for a $19,000 car! I wasn't 100% my so-called friend did this until I saw a photocopy of the fake driver's license he made pretending he was me to acquire the car! Ack - what a mess! Knowing full well of my intention to go to Australia, I believe Mr. Nobody kept everything in check by making payments and transferring balances just until the time I left for my adventure. Does anyone have a baseball bat I could borrow? What I still do not understand is how he thought he would get away with all of this...
Fortunately, Beevis didn't expect me to find out while in Australia and his now flimsy freedom I pray will soon come to an end. There's a $100,000 bond out for his butt and I hope soon after a couple of excited dudes in prison! Being open and trusting, treating others the way you want to be treated, and taking your word as your bond is my way, but my hard lesson is this is obviously not the way of the world. . . Nonetheless, this whole fraud scenario I've learned a lot of valuable lessons.
I had complete confidence in my so-called friend. Friends and family heard me talk of this successful stock broker guy in the highest regard. This huckster would waste my office time calling me at work sharing his latest stock tips and business success stories with the strongest conviction. Please - IF SOMETHING OR SOMEBODY SOUNDS TOO GOOD TO BE TRUE - THEY/IT PROBABLY IS. Thankfully, I AM NOT RESPONSIBLE FOR ANY OF THE CAR OR CREDIT DEBT OR OVERDRAFT DEBT and it has been cleared from my credit reports.
Free at last, free at last! I feel further relieved raising your identity fraud awareness. It happens! C'est la vie! Get this - you're just a number too! Just one more thing I just looked up on an ID FRAUD website:
There were 1,200,500 known identity theft victims in 2001 according to the FTC records. That’s 3300 victims per day in the US. That’s a new victim once every two and a half minutes. This does not include all of the Americans who did not know to contact the FTC and be counted and it also does not include any of those in the US whose perpetrator was a family member or known person and the victim was therefore afraid to report the problem. These are last year’s statistics. Identity theft is by far the nation’s #1 and fastest growing crime in the USA today. With this many victims just how many perpetrators are out there? Please join our fight to not only abolish identity theft and the terroristic tactics used by some of these perpetrators against their victims, but also to get consistent laws in the US to effectively prosecute a perpetrator when caught(no matter where in the US that the victim might live).
Just be careful and smarter than I was . . . Okay, now onwards and upwards! I've earned my vacation! :) :) :)
My life guarding summer was an emotional up and down roller coaster, but I have great memories! Just when I wanted to give up I always sought a friend to perk me back up. Thank you Mom, John, Lou, Paul, Kristina, Susanne, Debbie, chicken soup crew, Alex and Regina, Jim, Ed, Harry, Colleen and MaryAnn.
Okay, just a little more thanks. Thank you Emilio and Holly for organizing me a "get Allen back to Australia" fund raising party when I came home. It was pi$$-pouring rain the night of that party and most of my swing buddies showed up and contributed to my cause!! Also, I give a special thanks to Paul for organizing the parties this summer and getting people together EVERY time I came home to Philadelphia! I'm REALLY grateful! Oh, thank you Alexa and Dominic for doing all the gourmet party cooking! You know, Saturday February 1st, 2003 I'll be home - sounds like a good party day to me :)
As the summer sunny days slowly simmered away, the stronger I grew. I stuck to my commitment, worked hard, and had so many great experiences that I'll never forget. If I would've given up I would've missed out meeting many cool people! Ironically, I not only got mentally tougher and proud I pulled through all this, but I've gotten physically tougher! I put on some muscle this summer - no joke! Thanks for the broom routine Harry!
Let me thank all of you. You wouldn't be on my adventure list if you didn't have an impact on me in some way, even if you simply made me smile! Enough lip service! Enough sob story! Enough ki$$ a$$ ...
Adventure time! Here's my story:
Are your eyes getting tired yet? If you've missed out on my last adventure, I'm a little nervous I won't be able to top it. All I can say is if I do something interesting or funny, you're going to read about it!
If you don't want to be on this list, feel free to write me back and I'll put a stop to it. No hard feelings - really! In contrast, If you know anybody who wants to be on this list that may be saying,"Why did he forget me, I thought we were cool," please let me know! I'm only human! Also, if you'd prefer me to send this email to another email address, just type me a quick-E!
Well, I'll be in touch prattling on some more from the other side of the world. It's less than 42 hours till my Philadelphia departure and I have all of those stomach turning feelings I love so much! Yeah!
Oh - for those afraid of flying - I've spent about 50 hours this year in the air on more than 12 airplanes. After getting screened at every security checkpoint, I'd say the least secure security point (flying Philadelphia-Atlanta-Miami-LasVegas-LA-Fiji-Sydney-Adelaide- Sydney-LA-Chicago-Philadelphia) was at Philly International.
On that note, It's a bird ... it's a plane ... no it's Audacious
Adventurer Al saying g'day!
(Goodbye for now - hope you're still awake!)
"My greatest mistake, the fault for which I can't forgive myself, is
that one day I ceased my obstinate pursuit of my own individuality."
- Oscar Wilde
You've got a friend in . . .
| Allen Rue - travelling extraordinaire - joy seeker |