Well this seems legitimate.

10 May

I replied to an ad for a personal assistant position listed on Indeed.com that seemed to be potentially legitimate. The guy could have been a total a-hole, but I was going to wait to pass judgment until I got a phone call or in-person meeting.

Here is the ad:


I sent a very nice email highlighting my job experience and professional ethics. In response, I received this:


Dear Sir/Madam,

I would be very interested in offering you a part-time paying job in which you could earn some reasonable money.
My name is john smith and I am 52 years of age. I just resigned my job as a research scientist for ARINI(Agricultural Research Institute of Northern Ireland) and I now work as a freelance consultant for the institute which gives me very much time to do my own work which is basically being a freelance researcher who could be employed by research institutes to do research projects anywhere in the world.
Currently, I have just been granted a funding to head a research project in the tropical regions of Asia regarding rare and vulnerable plant species and this would be commencing very soon.

This research program will be funded and sponsored by some of my American counterparts and Associates. But the only set back is that the American counterparts want to make payments for the research in form of US money orders/ cashier’s checks only and its a known fact that money in such forms cannot be cashed outside the US. Getting an accountant in the states or opening an account would have been my best choice but I have a deadline to meet and taking any of those choices would cost me time and a whole lot of other requirements which I am not ready to deal with.

This is where I need to employ your assistance and service.


At this point, I will be glad if you could work with me as my representative in the US. You will be working as my payment assistant in charge of collecting and processing the payments from my Associates. Since they will be making the payment in Money orders/ Cashier checks made payable only in the US, you will be collecting this payments and cashing them on my behalf. On agreement that you are my representative in the US, you will receive a commission of 10% of whatever amount of payment you receive from my associates.


1. Receive payments (in form of money orders/checks) from my associates via mail by regular courier services.
2. Cash the Payments at your Bank.
3. Deduct 10% which will be your commission/percentage on Payment processed.
4. You are to remit the balance via Money Gram or Western Union Money Transfer according to my instruction.


10% from each transaction! For instance: On receiving 6000 US Dollars via checks or money orders on my behalf. You will cash the payment and keep 10% to yourself before remitting the balance!

At the beginning your commission will equal 10%, though later it will increase up to 12%! For the research, I am expecting about the sum of $105,000 in total from the clients (though the money will be sent in installments due to the progress of my research). You could make over $10,500 for the short period of time we will be working together.

You do not have to go out of your present daily activity in order to engage in this Job (i.e. you can do this Work easily without leaving or affecting your present Job).You will work as an independent contractor right from your home /office. Your job is absolutely legal. You do not need any capital to start (non of your personal funds is needed).


18 years or older.
Legally capable.
Responsible, Reliable and Trustworthy.
Ready to work 3-4 hours per week.
Able to check and respond to emails often.
Easy telephone access.

Yes it is. As a matter of fact, my lawyer checked all legal provisions to know if there is any domestic or international laws against businesses or deals in this manner. And he said its allowed by all LAWS. So know that doing this work is safe and legitimate.

I hope all is well understood. I would be glad if you accept my proposal and I intend to commence as soon as you are ready.
Please, to facilitate the conclusion of this transaction if accepted, do send promptly by email the following details below, to indicate your interest.

ADDRESS ( not p.o box):


Dr john smith


There are a few things to address about this email.

1. I sent my application to an email with “John Wilson” in the address. I received a response from a “Dr john smith” who is neither fond of capitalization nor punctuation. If you are two people at once, you are probably NOT LEGITIMATE.

2. In the ad, the job required 25 hours per week. The responding email requires only 3-4. NOT LEGIT.

3. Contrary to the job posting, which preferred I have clerical experience and computing skills, this merely requires me to be a full-grown human. It also required that I be “trustworthy” i.e. not a snitch. ILLEGITIMATE.

4. Dr. Smith has had his lawyers look over the legal implications of all of this and says it’s A-OK. Probably, if you need to address the legality of a job you are offering in a simple job description, chances are YOU ARE NOT LEGITIMATE.

5. The “Doctor” is currently a “freelance consultant.” That is code for “MONEY LAUNDERER.”

6. Oh, I’m just going to be cashing a few checks and then taking a little off the top for my troubles? WELL THAT’S JUST NOT LEGITIMATE.

7. “You are to remit the balance via Money Gram or Western Union Money Transfer according to my instruction.” According to my instruction? That sounds ominous. NOPE.

So the job hunt continues.


Free is my favorite price.

10 May


This past week I went to a concert at a local Sacramento venue, Ace of Spades. It was dubbed “No Dough Show” because the entrance was FREE and showcased The Cosmonauts, WRINGS and Imagine Dragons.

The only band I had even heard of before was WRINGS because I know someone in the band and consequently, have been to a few of their shows. I knew I would at least enjoy them, but I was pleasantly surprised with the other performances.  Imagine Dragons has a successful single “It’s Time” which I was  impressed with, as well as a most of the other songs they played. The Cosmonauts were fun to watch as they were dressed entirely in superhero costumes. It was a LOT of spandex.

Overall, I hope to see many more of these No Dough Shows in Sacramento– free is ALWAYS my favorite price.

Have I got a deal for you.

9 May


This would be my current dream job. What’s YOUR current dream job?

Special thanks to the great Ashley who designed this mock ad for me to post to Living Social Career’s Facebook and Twitter accounts.  

We are our own worst enemies.

9 May

Sometimes, we are the creators of our biggest messes. So stop shaking the goddamn lemon tree!

What I learned from my mess.

4 May

Hi, my name is Allison and I’m a mess. In a completely unintentional metaphor, I started cleaning up the physical mess of my life today, starting with my closet. Having worked in retail longer that I have in any other industry, I have acquired a LOT of clothes. I should also admit that I have a strange emotional attachment to them. Some items in my closet, despite not having seen the light of day for years, have remained for other no reason than I didn’t have the heart to let go of them.

But today I did it. Without the help of any of my less messy friends (which happens to be most of them), I purged my closet of nearly 40 items.  A tan suede jacket I bought with my earnings from my first job at Nordstrom. A dress from my 16th birthday that was finally selected after enduring 20 hours of shopping with my mother. T-shirts I acquired from races I trained months to run. All things I had a hard time parting with.

Despite its value, the suede jacket had an ink stain on the collar. The blue dress suffered fatal injuries from a freak ironing accident. The T-shirts had never been worn. The truth was, they were just clogging up my closet, leaving no room for better things to come along. It was time to finally LET GO.

It didn’t take me too long to find the obvious parallels between the physical mess I’ve let pile up to the emotional messes I’ve had trouble letting go of lately. Having been through two breakups in four months, this great purge actually helped me organize a few things in the emotional realm as well.

Neither of the breakups were major. The first was actually quite minor on my end. I had known him in college and we spent a month trying to get to know each other, mostly over the phone because he lived a few hours away. Although we got on great in our phone conversations, his actions continued to prove that he was more interested in getting ME to like HIM than he was actually interested in me as a person. The long distance kept me from knowing this sooner, and the dating relationship lasted one month and three hours. Those last three hours were spent breaking up with him.

I went into my next dating endeavor almost immediately. Just a few hours after the epic phone breakup, another guy asked me out. One who I never thought would. And I was smitten with him. Although in the beginning it seemed otherwise, he wasn’t much different from Guy No. 1. He had the advantage of learning from Guy No.1’s mistakes, but still failed to prove that he truly valued me. Before he ended our relationship, he killed it slowly by spending less and less time with me while putting more and more energy into his new girlfriend job. Though I knew the relationship was terminal, he ended it in a way that told me a lot more about him than he ever could.

Over the phone. While I was on vacation. On Easter.

What does this have to do with getting rid of clothes I don’t need? A lot, actually. Even though Guy No. 2 possessed a lot of great qualities (attractive, smart, funny), like the suede jacket, his redeeming factors didn’t outweigh the figurative blue stain on the collar. In many ways, he was perfect for me. In one essential way, he was not. He didn’t make me feel important. He didn’t work to communicate with me. He ended our three-month relationship with a six minute phone call.

So it didn’t matter how ambitious, sweet or cute he was– he didn’t make me feel like I mattered to him. And that matters. So I had to let that go. Like the suede jacket and blue dress, he didn’t deserve to be a part of my life anymore. To haunt my thoughts with feelings of insecurity and insignificance. To fool me into thinking that one day I will find a use for him.

For in purging my life of unnecessary objects, I leave room for much better things.