When I talk about the no-contract cell phone companies and their networks, I go out and buy the phones at retail price and then test the service for a month before I go on the air with a report.
Companies would love to let me have loaner units or just outright give me stuff. But I won’t take it. I need to be unbought and unbossed. Then following my monthlong test of a new phone, I sell it on Craigslist or eBay for whatever the market will bear.
My executive producer Christa is usually kind enough to handle the transactions for me. She was the one who corresponded on my behalf with a potential buyer, and the buyer was sure that Christa was trying to pull one over on her!
I had this beautiful Android phone that I used for about 400 minutes of calling and extensive web surfing. But I couldn’t find the box! I have a drawer where I always put the box and manuals, but my family recently moved and I have no idea where all that stuff went.
The woman who was the potential buyer was wondering why I didn’t have the box, too. She thought she smelled a rat. She even brought her muscle-bound husband with her because she was convinced it was a scam when Christa asked her to meet at the radio station to buy the phone.
Turns out the couple were big fans of the show and was excited when Christa introduced herself. It was even the woman’s birthday on that particular day! So we took a birthday photo together at the station. And her husband didn’t even have to pummel me in the ground!
But I though the coolest thing was that the couple listened to the show enough to know to be suspicious in the first place when an online transaction doesn’t feel quite right. Everything was fine in this case, but that kind of suspicion can help keep you out of harm’s way when it really counts.