I do not talk to strangers

November 29, 2011

Jon is always looking for stuff on craigslist, stuff we may or may not actually need. I think it's just a way to keep his hands busy and there are worse ways that could happen, most of them lead to blindness. He messages me at least once a week with some listing or another to check out. The answer is no. I repeat– the answer is no.

Would I like this chair? No. Would I like this bag of robots? Maybe. Would I like another vintage Honda motorcycle to put in the garage we cannot open? Nooo–...Okay well yes, actually, I would. Especially if it's an orange CB750. But no, I would absolutely not like to drive out to the country and "check it out" in some creeper's barn at 7:30pm on a Tuesday night in the rain and there's no way in your mom's hell I'm paying him THAT much for it, are you mad?

As much as I like that one singular part of craigslist where I get rid of junk I don't need for delicious delicious cash money, every other part of it stresses me the hell out. Contacting strangers? ON THE TELEPHONE? No. Going to their houses or even worse– them coming to MY house? No. Haggling, negotiating? No. It's a lot of no. No no no no no. (Let's not dwell on the fact that almost all of my craigslist transactions thus far have gone down as smoothly and conveniently as oil pie. Personal experience is IRRELEVANT. CREEPERS.)

Yesterday he messaged me a listing for a couch, and though I was annoyed by his always looking to my immense disappointment we are actually in the market for a replacement couch. Not the spending a lot of money market, the craigslist market. And it was actually... a really nice couch ...for a really nice price. There we were again.

Before I knew it Jon had somehow talked me into texting the number from the ad. Some lame line about his, "bad cell reception" and, "blah blah blah I'M A HORRIBLE MONSTER." I don't know man, that's all I heard. I'm sorry, you want me to do what? Do you remember who you're married to? I do not talk to strangers. I do not broker craigslist deals. Dirtballs.

But because I'm a lovely and obliging wife I did text the couch creeper, despite the fact that my brain was spewing forth alarming images of puffy be-sweatered basement dwellers with milky yellowing eyes leering hungrily at my soul via text. Her name is Geraldine and she lives off the lives she sucks from the husks of her victim's pathetic bodies. They said they were looking for couches.

Geraldine and I passed notes back and forth for a few minutes in the awkward waltz that is craigslist negotiation. "Is the couch still available?" I tentatively began. "when cn U come c it?" she replied. Evidently Geraldine was fourteen. More likely that was just part of her elaborate scheme to gain my trust. It was not working and I was as suspicious as ever. YOU WON'T GET THE BEST OF ME, GERALDINE, IF THAT IS EVEN YOUR REAL NAME. Geraldine? Grenadine? Lima bean? VAMPIRE QUEEN? Don't think I don't see what you're doing there.

After settling on a price she confirmed, "so U can come 2nite?" Yes, Geraldine. Yes we can. Except there's no way in hell I'm taking my kid to your house, Jon is on his own for that one. She ended with the ever mysterious, "text when u r come over" which was dually infuriating because she A) did not specify a convenient time, or really ANY time at all and B) she did not provide her location. Geraldine. Sweetie. Honey. Have you ever done this before? You seem confused. It's probably the hunger. Focus.

I was running around the room panicking and pulling my hair out from sheer frustration. Geraldine's failure to close the deal, her use of 'u' as a complete word, and my abject terror that she would wear our skin were eating me alive as surely as she and her ten cats probably wanted to. At that point Jon stepped in and gently pried my phone out of my sweaty shaking hands. I blissfully have no idea what happened next but when I came to Jon was not dead and we had a lovely new couch sitting in the front room. It appears that Geraldine's dessicated vampire grandmother never ever sat on it, not even once.

Dear craigslist: WE WIN YOU. Not dead yet. Love, jamie.
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