Tuesday, 19 June 2007

So there I am attempting to mow the diminutive front lawn with an ancient and useless Flymo, my back protesting as I swing the cursed beast wildly back and forth, and the expletives flying from my erstewhile ladylike mouth as the verdant blades of grass spring up unshorn to laugh at me in gay abandon, when Dave hoves into view on the top step wearing a fetching ensemble of boxer shorts and apron. In one hand he brandishes a wooden spoon (or was it a whisk?), desperately trying to catch my attention over the ratcheting grinding of the mower, while in the other he holds his mobile phone, pressing it hard against his ear in the manner of someone not wishing to miss a single syllable of the conversation.
I stop the machine.
"I'm on the 'phone to the Fraud Squad. Pip," he announces and for just a moment I am reminded of Hyacinth Bucket (pronounced Bouquet, of course) basking in the importance of association.
Allow me to explain.... On Sunday dear Davey took it into his head to check our bank statements - not something we do with great relish or, indeed, great frequency but, money matters being rather pertinent at present, he was moved to inspect the ins and (mostly) outs of our finances.
"What is FTB World of Warcr?" he asked of his beloved.
"Not a bloody clue." she testily replied, only to be informed that on the 7th of May three payments had been taken from our account by something bearing the aforementioned name, each one for the amount of 14.99.
We went online and entered World of Warcr - up came Warcriminals and suspicion smote my untrusting breast as I considered Dave's obsession with World at War, the endless episodes of black and white footage played out to the distinguished tones of Sir Larry, and the distinctive burning of the Swastika at the forefront of my mind. Was there more to his interest than met the eye? We carried on searching and discovered World of Warcraft - Ah, ha! Now I had him! The obsession had gone too far and he was downloading games to feed it.
"Bum (I paraphrase). It looks like the kids have downloaded something that we are paying for."
We questioned. We interrogated. We did everything bar shine a lamp into poor Sam's eyes (well, he was the only one around), but he was adamant that he had only heard of the game, not ever played it. Eventually we rang the bank and asked for more info, only to be told that one of Dave's own accounts also had two payments from the same FTB W of W for the same amounts paid out on the same day! So, five payments in all; that's er... 5 X 14.99 = a lot! The bank told us they would look into it - obviously, the bank person, not the building. Honestly, do try to follow - and get back to us. Fast-forward to Delia, sorry Dave, in the apron and boxers and the Fraud Squad.
Apparently, they are dealing with thousands of cases like this to do with FTB World of Warcraft. It's a huge scam and they are using cash machines, etc, to access the details of peoples' accounts. Dave will be signing a statement and we will get the money back, but how scarey is it to think that if he hadn't checked we might never have known?
The moral of this tale? Go check your accounts, statements, under the mattress and, should you see the words FTB World of Warcraft, then get thee to the Feds!

Oh, and as a footnote....DAve was wearing the apron because he was baking me a cake as a bribe to get me to cut the lawn. Why only boxers beneath? Haven't a clue!!!

Bye all xx


  1. Well first of all I can't get the thought of Dave with only boxers on brandishing a kitchen tool.

    Right. Concentrate.
    That is indeed scary. I hate given credit card info on the internet but do it all the time. Thank you for the warning.

    Crystal x

  2. Oh god, would have thought exactly the same as you - given that Adrian, like Dave, is totally obsessed with WaW - in fact, with ALL war programmes/books/films...worrying really.
    But that is awful because insidious amounts..... I had a fraud on my credit card recently - jewellery and a camera bought.... fortunately the cc company called and checked....but a pain nonetheless as the card had to be stopped blah blah blah.

  3. Scary. And *astards. I hate it when the world goes wrong on you. I tried to switch money (HUGE money, think extension amounts of money money) from our savings to our current account. Didn't appear. Phoned savings people in a frenzy. Off-hand and rude. Transpired that they had paid it to someone else. The fear and panic getting it back, all the onus on us until they cleared traced their phone calls, listened to my call and realised that they were in the wrong at which a little humble pie was rapidly eaten and they gave us £50 to say sorry. Not a nice week in the recent Milla annals I can tell you.

  4. we had weird payment on credit card bill for an american singles group, pretty sure it wasn't us even on a bad day. hope all sorts out. love the image of the apron and boxers.

  5. Aha!! Of course being a retired bank manager I always check and double check every statement, receipt etc!! And always recomment others to do the same!

    PS- Just caught up on your last couple of blogs (sorry, busy with orders at mo)
    I ditto so many of the comments. It is so true that some of us on this site are slightly 'vulnerable,'sensitive or 'fragile' characters. I think we see some of the same things in each other and can relate, which is why we have all bonded and formed the friendships that we have.

    I am someone who has kept things bottled up for many many years and not told anyone some of what I am writing in my Orange Man Blog.
    I thought people might think I was a bit of a fruit cake-I started to think I was one! But it has only been by sitting down and writing from the beginning my rollercoaster life that I understand why I have had trouble finding 'my happy thoughts' sometimes. Blogging has helped ME. I am sure some people don't agree or don't feel comfortable-The people who want to read it are. And thanks to their support and comments I don't feel anywhere near so overwhelmed as I did and occasionally I catch glimpses of my confidence again. (seeing how well I did to come through some of it.)

    I can only speak from my experience-if there is something troubling/vexing you or whirring around in your head it won't go away until it has been dealt with...So when you are eventually ready, your purple coo friends will be here to support and guide you...no one judges or is negative on this site which is why I feel so comfortable here...

    Take good care and warm wishes

  6. Yep, we have had illegal goings on with credit card - have got it sorted and it was some cloning at a petrol station.
    Seems this is the most popular thing at the moment.

  7. Bloody hell, my memory has gone today - meant to say fellow Capricorn here - seems several of us are on the site.

  8. Great blog Pipany. And thanks for the tip. I check my statements like a hawk. Well spotted.

    I love the image of you and the hover mower - partly because I have a tiny front lawn, too which I mow in just the same fashion, occasionally cutting the cable which I blogged about once. Perhaps we ought to form an association of 'people who bovver with a hovver.'

  9. Am totally ashamed to admit that we are lax and fecklesss when it comes to checking our statements - we know, we know, we're just too terrified to look, most of the time. Thanks for the wake-up call!

  10. Hello Pip, I'm feeling absolutely drained by all the waiting for news so have been in 'lurk' mode (how unpleasant!) so thanks for your enquiry. Now, about Dave in his boxers and apron... get a camera next time will you?

  11. Oh grief - I don't check my stuff often enough. Money - really is root of all evil.

  12. All husbands should have aprons!
    Yes - we've had similar things happen with mastercard - someone shopped in our name in Louisiana last year! I'd have liked to do that, but unfortunately I was at home at the time!

  13. I don't check my statement as my overdraft is always between huge and very huge so I just pop the whole thing in a drawer and pretend it isn't happening. Maybe someone else is running up the debt! Yes, that's definitely it! I thought I'd lost my card last week and was desperately trying to work out how I could claim they'd run up the huge overdraft and get the money back somehow. Sigh.

    Husband checks the 'joint' (ha ha to which I have no access!!) account and we once had a mystery, but, er did nothing about it. That's helpful.

  14. oh no, I really need to go through my bank statements and i really don't want to. hOpefully they haven't found my bank account? Could you just give me that reassurance and then i won't have to look?!

    Your partner sounds incredible, was he really baking you a cake?