How many times have the police warned us, if it seems to good to be true, it probably is? Apparently, not enough times, because it seems like every dawn brings a new batch of scams.

Scams Multiply Like Rabbits

Recently, I read about a racket where the caller asks, “Is this Melda Clark?” and then records my answer and uses my “yes” voice for nefarious reasons.

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In another common scam, the caller or email writer claims to be from the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) and demands money. In Canada, alone, the scammers have stolen more than $4.3 million from trusting Canadians.

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To date, I have not fallen prey to any phone scams, but I cannot boast a clean record because of  “good deals” I could not not resist.

Scams all the Way From China, with Love

Each day my Facebook feed contains an assortment of tempting ads which offer quality merchandise — directly from China — no middleman involved. Recently, I fell in love with a beautiful winter coat for only $19.99 plus a few dollars for shipping. The sizes were unclear so I ordered the largest size possible: XXXXXL.

My coat arrived all the way from China in a week or two. I tore open the package, certain the coat would fit me or be a tad too big, but the result was quite the opposite. It only fit about half of me. An XXXXXL wouldn’t fit? It was more like a size Medium and it was not made for Canadian winters —  Florida, maybe. Now, I am stuck with a coat that I cannot return. Where was my brain? A winter coat for $19.99? I deserved what I got. (Hey, it might fit my three-year-old granddaughters.)

With a heart full of shame, I must admit it is not the end of the story. For just $1.99 I could add a sparkling necklace to my order, and I did. I stood in front of the mirror admiring my bargain. While taking it off, the chain broke in half. The piece could have been full of cadmium or other toxic metals.   A CBC Marketplace episode was about jewelry from the back alleys of China, and horror of horrors, Glenn and I watched it.

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There are Suckers for Scams Born Every Minute

Now for my dilemma, predicament, quandary…

Most of the stores where I shop sell merchandise bearing a tag “Made in China” or “Fait en Chine.” Why do the clothing and shoes in stores fit true to size, but the ones I buy directly from China do not? Is it another case of “you get what you pay for” or “buyer beware?” All I know is that I could start a forest fire with the money I have wasted on substandard wares.

Have I learned my lesson? I sure hope so, but I could fall off the wagon in a flash if I see a steal of a deal. I am not the only one who falls for  deals that are too good be true……I hope. Actually, I’m positive I am not alone. Otherwise, these sites would not  exist.

On a bright note, I have not purchased merchandise from the Home Shopping Channel (HSC) or The Shopping Channel (TSC).

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