Technically Incorrect offers a slightly twisted take on the tech that’s taken over our lives.
Love doesn’t happen until you actually meet someone. Greg Vote/Corbis
Humans can do the most senseless things.
Many of those humans are called men.
This is the tale of a man who fell in love online with a woman he’d never actually met.
The story was told to the Mirror by the man’s ex-fiancee, Rebecca Lewis from Ross-on-Wye in the UK. She was so in love when her boyfriend Paul Rusher proposed. Then, things seemed to take a difficult turn. Somehow, he was distant.
So she did what so many lovers do. She scoured his laptop. Well, she had set up his Facebook account for him. She knew his password. Lo and behold, there were countless messages of love being exchanged with a woman called Kristen.
Lewis confronted her man. He didn’t stand by her. He dumped her.
Still, she thought there was something fishy about all this. Worse, she still loved her man. She told the Mirror: “But even though Paul had treated me so badly, I was still in love with him. I couldn’t see myself growing old with anyone else. I had a gut feeling all wasn’t as it seemed with Kristen.”
Lewis decided to Google “romance scam.” You’ll be stunned when I tell you that images of this alleged Kristen peppered the results. (It turned out to be an image of a Russian model.)
She told the Mirror: “I wasn’t surprised it was a con. There were around 20 pages of posts with pictures of Kristen, although she’d been using different names to chat to different men. She’d asked them all for money.”
Yes, the alleged Kristen had asked Rusher to rush her a mere £2,000 (about $3,066), so that they could finally meet. Oh, did I mention that Kristen allegedly claimed she was the daughter of a Californian millionaire and that her money was supposedly tied up in a Nigerian company?
Lewis explained: “I say she — she could have been a man for all I knew, or a gang of men. I did a bit more snooping and I discovered whoever was behind it had used the pictures of a Russian model to create the profiles I’d seen on Paul’s laptop.”
Online scammers aren’t among the finest humans. Even Christian dating sites have seen heinous attempts at extortion. The scammers prey on the lonely and the gullible. They profess love and merely want money.
Even after so many years and so many warnings, some people still believe that they will find a magical being in the Web’s great cesspool.
Some women might, in Lewis’s position, have sniggered at their fiance’s thick-headedness. They might have gone out with their friends and celebrated Rusher’s dunderheadness.
This is where the story takes a peculiar turn. Lewis showed her evidence to Rusher. He didn’t believe her at first. This was in 2013.
But you know how this ends, don’t you? Rusher spent a year trying to woo Lewis back. They are now re-engaged.
“Paul realized how much of an idiot he’d been and we slowly rebuilt our relationship,” Lewis told the Mirror. “My parents were horrified at first when I decided to get back with him as he’d put me through hell, but now we’re stronger than ever.”
Who are we to judge whether their relationship will be a success? Who are we to cast stones? All we can do is suggest that you should never, ever send money to someone you’ve only met on the Web. Yes, no matter how gorgeous, enticing, loving and grammatically perfect they might be.
Lewis seems happy with how things have turned out.
She daintily explained: “We’re saving for our wedding again, although we have a joint Facebook account now.”
Ah, yes. That should do it.