Thomas Wictor



Kurt Vonnegut’s sister died of cancer. The day before her death, her husband was killed in a train accident. When she was told, she laughed and said, “Slapstick!”

I’ve just discovered that I’ve been mercilessly scammed for months. The scammers targeted someone who’s housebound with an incurable illness that’s getting worse. Not only that, they scammed me right after my father died and while my mother was dying, facts of which they were fully aware.

Now that’s dedication to thievery.

I’m not shocked. My life has been incredibly hard, so this isn’t something that’ll knock me off my rails or cause me to fall into a black pit of depression. I’ve now got the ability to instantly cut malefactors out of my life and move on. It comes from decades of being preyed upon. I was trained to be quarry.

Someday I’ll write about this. I’ve saved all the e-mails.

What interests me is the mindset. People can rationalize anything, I’ve learned. And it’s entirely true that I didn’t do enough checking up. The reason was because I was under extreme stress from the trauma of my parents’ dying processes and the unbroken string of ripoffs associated with Ghosts and Ballyhoo. My judgment was impaired. I allowed myself to be seduced, so I have only myself to blame.

But getting back to the mindset of the predators, imagine what it takes to fleece someone who’s incurably ill and whose parents are dying horribly. Amazing. And the predators did it for relative chickenfeed.

The money stolen from me won’t impact my life. My parents were generous in their bequests. What I’ll never understand is selling your soul for such a small amount of cash. You couldn’t pay me any amount of money to do what these people did to me. If I were in their shoes, I couldn’t sleep at night. It’s certain that a lot of booze is involved.

I’ve had to deal with many criminals in my life. One almost murdered Tim and me. What happens is they put the onus for their crimes on you. Hey, it’s not their fault if you’re an idiot, a patsy, a sucker, and a gullible clown.

True. It’s not the predator’s fault that I’m an idiot, a patsy, a sucker, and a gullible clown. We could talk for days about why I am the way I am, but it doesn’t matter. It simply is.

I could also write a book about the big, fat, juicy targets presented to me over the years. My parents, for example. I know lots of people who stole from them. Tim and I could’ve cleaned them out. But we didn’t. Why not? Mom and Dad were rich, old, sick, near the ends of their lives, and disconnected emotionally from us. They didn’t use their money, living like paupers and counting every penny. Why shouldn’t we have emptied their bank accounts?

Because it would’ve been WRONG.

That word isn’t in the lexicon of the people who’ve reamed me over the past two years. To them, right and wrong are quaint, old-fashioned, long-extinct concepts that have no place in our modern society. Look out for number one. Dog eat dog. Screw them before they screw you.

Well, I’d rather die than stoop to that level of inhumanity. I’m no animal, and I’ll survive this latest rape. See, I’ve been raped by the best, yet I’m still here. Not only that, I’ll keep writing. I’ve already taken steps to remedy the current situation. Most importantly, I’m not angry. It’s too stupid and tawdry for me to be angry about, since I’m the one who blundered into this latest debacle.

Tim, on the other hand, is angry. Really, really, really angry. Funnily enough, he told me a week ago that he wanted to take a trip to Northern California. When he offered to pay a visit to my stalker in 2010, I stopped him. I now believe in total free will. Tim can do whatever he wants. He has my blessings. Who am I to interfere in how someone reacts to ruthless marauders?

Hey, it’s not my fault if people victimized me when I did nothing to them. I mean, they’d read the goddamn book! What did they think would happen when my completely unforgiving, utterly vengeful, inhumanly strong brother found out? The answer is, they didn’t think. Oh well.

It’s a shame when people bring a giant hurt down on their own heads for no reason. Now, the beds that were made await their sleepers. We would’ve all benefited if everyone had just done what they’d promised.

They have my sympathy.

When Brian Jones died, Pete Townsend of the Who wrote a poem that ended this way.

It was a normal day for Brian
A man who died every day.

This is a normal day for me. It’s really not that big a deal. My hope is to someday hook up with honest, forthright professionals who keep their promises. It may not happen, given my inability to perceive the Wolf, but every day is a new opportunity. And after the indescribable horror of my parents’ deaths, getting ripped off again by someone with no conscience isn’t the end of the world. Scorpions sting, and scammers scam. It’s what they do.

Any writer who wants to know what I’m talking about here should drop me a line. I’ll tell you who to avoid like the plague.

Scott Thunes saved me by uncovering the truth. Now he feels bad. I don’t see why; he kept me from wasting even more money. In my defense, when I signed up with the latest predators, I’d just been ripped off majorly by someone else, Dad had died in the most nightmarish way possible, Mom was dying, and the Website was completely fubar due to liars and crooks. This soothing, confident voice on the phone seemed to be the answer to my prayers.

Sure, I feel stupid. So what? I’m used to it.

Though I may be stupid, I didn’t prey on someone experiencing the worst suffering of his life. Here’s an admission that I don’t mind making: At their request I sent them updates on Mom’s condition.

I wonder if they laughed?

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