The Long Con

My “What Would You Do?” seminars are filled with tough, thought provoking clinical issues. So, I was happily surprised to find the anecdote below in my bin. It is one I will share with my students, but I would also like to know “What Would You Do?”

A number of years ago, I was accosted in front of St. Patrick’s Cathedral by a well-dressed and well-spoken man who claimed that his briefcase, his wallet and other valuables had been stolen. If I could lend him $20, he said, he would return the money upon his return home to Kansas City. I handed him $20 and my business card; he gave me his card.

Conversation at dinner that evening considered the likelihood of my ever seeing that $20 again. “No way,” my wife said. “Yes,” I said. The children were split: two yes and two no.

A week later, I received a call from a man asking for the return of his $20. Apparently, my borrower had given his next patsy my card, saying it was his. A $20 contribution for my stupidity/naïveté to a clever con seemed almost reasonable.




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10 Responses to The Long Con

  1. I fell for that one – once

    Liked by 1 person

  2. prior.. says:

    hahah – what a little sneak!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. juliehcares says:

    Wow. They had a great plan!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. @vapor_sage says:

    If I happened to have a twenty, I might have given it to him. This reminds me of a story of a panhandler in San Francisco that was found to have made quite a nice living in the BART stations with a nice home in the suburbs

    Liked by 1 person

    • msw blog says:

      Many of my students had the same sentiments “If I happened to have a twenty, I might have given it to him.”and its interesting how many of us will help a “well-dressed and well-spoken” individual than someone who appears down on their luck. I don’t recall the BART story, but I have seen 20/20 specials on how people make a living on panhandling.

      Liked by 1 person

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