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A Pedestrian Encounter of the Fraudulent Kind

It was a beautiful day in La-La land, (as usual) and I was walking down Wilshire Blvd breaking every law ever written in Southern California. Walking is punishable by certain death at the hand of millions of unskilled motorists, or if you survive, immediate exile to Dubuque, Iowa.

But I needed some exercise on this working vacation to the land of bountiful abs. If I wanted to go shoulder to shoulder with the stars I needed some new frocks – not to mention some plastic surgery and a very tight corset.

Beverly Hills could provide all that.

But Beverly Hills was the last place I ever thought I would run into someone pushing X10 technology – even if it was illegal X 10 technologies.

I had two instant clues that the street seller of X10 technology was not necessarily legit.

1. Seeking pedestrian clients in a town where pedestrian is defined as “uninspired,” is not necessarily a smart marketing move.

2. The “hot” new “Centinal” cameras he had mounted inside his heavy raincoat on this 95-degree day might not be the same as the exciting new X10 Starlight Sentinel camera with 44x zoom. Besides, I know that the X10 marketing people have at least one English major in their facility that can spell “Sentinel.”

Still, I opened myself for a sales pitch from the man who seemed a bit new in the camera business. I could tell when he said that this camera’s Swiss-built mechanism could be pointed at a clock that would always give you the right time from anywhere.

I know, of course, that Kent, Washington is not now, or ever has been in Switzerland. Right away, I became suspicious. “So how does this work?” I asked smugly.

“Oh, the camera has some of the finest infrared technology known to man,” the vendor explained. “You can use this to monitor your baby’s room, keep track of the hired help, or give it to your friends in Baghdad – even though it doesn’t come with body armor.”

HA! “I exclaimed. “ I happen to know that the REAL X10 Sentinel doesn’t use possibly dangerous infrared technology. It uses natural light instead.”

At that, the vendor began to cry, shamelessly offering me a free “genuine Rolodex,” and a map to the stars’ home, if I didn’t turn him in.

Being a compassionate person, I compromised.

I had him exiled to Dubuque, Iowa.


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