Another Scam and Pictures in Kolkata (India Blog 20)
The Yellow Vest Movement in France is going on. It is a protest against global capitalism and neoliberal austerity. The global corporatist agenda. It is a backlash against the do-nothing socialists and the right-wing capitalists. Richard Wolff, the American Marxist, thinks that it could spread to a lot of other countries. It has already spread to Belgium.
Meanwhile, nothing like that in America. Or rather, the backlash against neoliberalism put Tiny Hands Trump in the White House. So much for political consciousness. American style.
Let them eat MAGA! I just hope they are enjoying it!
I guess the next election will be a litmus test for that.
I got out of there before the deluge, some 27 years ago. I could see it coming.
Anyway, no one would give me a job in the USA with my ideas. So much for political freedom! I was over educated. Or under roboticized.
4:55 Afternoon. Rested up.
The Hogg Market is quite complex. I couldn’t understand the layout of the whole thing.
I am planning to try using my cell phone for some night pictures in the evening.
I now understand that there are many Biharis in the city. Bihar is a nearby state.
I went out and around and made some night pictures with my cell phone. They are pretty good. I think it is useful for that, after all.
Tonight I got tried for a scam. But I didn’t fall for it.
The oldest game in the world. Using sex to hook a man.
I knew that there were several things wrong with it from the beginning. Anyone would know that who is the least bit familiar with Indian society.
A woman, quite attractive, with two kids, around five and six, comes up to a foreigner and asks what time it is. Sorry, baby. That just doesn’t happen in this country. So I knew it was a scam from the beginning.
But I thought that I would play along a little bit. It hit me that this is the first woman who has talked to me in this country in more than a week. So there must be something wrong!
I played along and showed her the time on my cell phone. Of course, she didn’t even pay attention. Didn’t even look. Everyone has a cell phone these days.
Then she started her cock and bull story.
“I live a long way away, near the airport. I came here with some friends. My husband has gone…” I thought she said “to a bar” but I don’t know if that was what she said. Either that or “my husband has gone away far and I am here with the two kids…” By then, the cock and bull story was in full bloom.
I said: “I think you are scamming me.”
She started saying: “I don’t understand you.”
I said: “Sorry, but I cannot know if your story is true or not.”
Of course, I knew that it was bullshit.
At that point, she saw that it was “game over” and just walked away.
She was going to ask me for some money for the kids. How could someone fall for such a cock and bull story? Not if they knew anything about Indian society. Besides, if she wanted to know the time, there are plenty of people around to ask. Why me?
My goodness! One would have to be brainless. I wouldn’t go for such a thing in any country. And everybody in India has friends and relatives who would help them out. Everyone has cell phones today.
Oh yes, I remember that I had my cell phone out when I started questioning her.
She saw my phone and said: “Do you want to take my picture?” She is not the only woman that I could get a picture of if I wanted. She was hoping that I would take a picture, and then she could ask me for money. So I guess it was a fall-back scam if the main one failed.
Some people can ask you to take their picture and then ask for money. Usually, I try to take pictures of those who do not ask me, but look more interesting. And more natural, if not posing. Sure, it would have been nice to take her picture, if it was just a picture and not a scam! She was a nice looking woman. But this was part of the scam.
It happened to me today in the Islamic area. Five young guys asked me to make their picture. They looked like the local toughs. I really had no desire to take their picture. They were not that interesting compared to a lot of old guys. But I consented. They lined up and I took a shot. Then they wanted to see the image in the back of the camera. They do not know what a film camera is. I tried to tell them that it was film and if they had an email address that I would send the picture to them.
But then a guy who spoke English came along and said that they would not have an email address, probably. When I was walking away, one of them said: “One Dollar.” I was already on the way to get a taxi.
I walked around in the evening a little, trying to make night pictures with the cell phone. I think I got some decent ones. But it is not easy to frame the shot with a cell phone.
I refuse to tell anyone the name of my hotel. I just say, “I don’t remember” or something like that.
But I did tell the guy who was selling silk scarves about my books on India. Maybe it was a mistake, but I didn’t think it would hurt anything. He seemed surprised that I had written four books on India. Well, that is what professors do, sometimes. Write books!
Most of them are not read, unfortunately. Sometimes fortunately!
However, I did not tell him the name of my hotel. I don’t want anyone scamming me at my hotel.