7 Reasons That you Shouldn’t pay £650 for a bag of Potatoes and Some Cardboard
Last week in Huntingdon, a couple walking along the high street were approached by a man they didn’t know, who offered to sell them a rucksack containing an iPhone and a laptop for £650. They agreed to this and, after visiting their bank, headed off to a car park behind some shops to conclude their transaction. Some time later, on opening the rucksack, they discovered that rather than containing a laptop and an iPhone, it did in fact, contain some potatoes and some cardboard. Yes, they’d been duped. Now, it seems unlikely that you would be contemplating a similar transaction (in fact, it seems more likely that a talking vase with three fingers will become the next pope) but, just in case, here are seven reasons that it’s probably not a good idea.
1. It’s Too Much To Pay For Potatoes. Even ones that come with bonus cardboard. 2.5kg of Sainsbury’s Basics potatoes cost 99p. This means that for £650 you would get 1641 kg of them which is a lot more than you can fit in a small rucksack, in fact, it’s more than you can fit in a small hatchback. Or, you can buy fewer potatoes and, with the money you’ve saved, you can buy a rucksack. A bejewelled one made of gold and silk, probably. Oh, and an apple.
2. Stupidity. Now, far be it from me to mock the stupid…no…wait, that is what I’m about to do, sorry. So, near be it to me to mock the stupid: What the hell were they thinking, the feckless nitwits? Under what circumstance does buying a laptop in a car park from a man that’s just approached you on the street ever seem like a good idea? That was going to be posed as a rhetorical question, but I’ve just thought of the answer. Under no circumstance, that’s when. Because to most people: You; me; everyone else in the world except for two people from Huntingdon, it might set off some alarm bells.
3. Morality. Unless, of course, they believed they were buying goods that had been criminally procured from some unfortunate victim. In which case, the fact that £650 has been diddled from this couple would seem quite just. You can’t make me believe for one moment that anyone would think this was a legitimate transaction. A rucksack containing a laptop and an iPhone for £650 from a man in a car park? Hmmm. So, if you spend £650 on some potatoes and cardboard, you might end up appearing immoral. And you’ll be lumbered with a rucksack.
4. Because The Potatoes And Cardboard Come In A Rucksack. And rucksacks are awful. Not when you’re hiking or climbing, then they’re very handy, but in an urban environment, rucksacks are a liability and likely to break things in shops or provoke a fellow pedestrian or public transport user into punching the wearer. If you wear the things with the straps over both shoulders everyone thinks, what a complete cock, and if you wear the things with the straps over one shoulder everyone thinks, what a complete cock, why not just get a messenger bag? You don’t need a rucksack; there’s too much social stigma involved in wearing them.
5. The Dilemma. This comes when you discover you’ve been ripped-off and instead of visiting your favourite humour website on a shiny new computer, you’re going to have to try to read The Onion using a potato. Which sounds difficult. So then you have to decide whether you’re going to go to the police and risk incriminating yourself, or whether to accept you’ve been conned and resolve not to let it happen again. On balance, I think I’d opt for the latter. Not that I’m likely to find myself in that position, mostly on account of not being a weaselly bell-end.
6. Publicity. There’s a popular idiom which states that “any publicity is good publicity”. This idiom, however, is stupid: Publicity didn’t work out too well for BP or Gary Glitter, did it? And we can note that the anonymous victims/lucky-potato-owners haven’t revealed their identities. Possibly because they wish to remain anonymous, or possibly because they’re too stupid to remember their own names, who knows? One thing’s for certain though, if you spend £650 on potatoes and cardboard, tabloid journalists will be pulling out all of the stops to find out who you are. And that sort of publicity doesn’t seem like good publicity to me.
7. Association. Dr Crippen. Marie Antoinette. King Canute. Names which will be forever synonymous with murder, arrogance and folly. And if you spend £650 on a rucksack containing cardboard and potatoes, your name will doubtless become associated forever with either gullibility, avarice, or stupidity. Or all three. And you’ll have to recycle the cardboard.