Friday, September 17, 2010

Once you know the scam, it makes perfect sense!

At the end of August of 2009, I moved into a house out in the country. It was run down, that was ok. The guy who showed the property lied about a few things, that wasn't ok. I was to supposedly be a "room mate" of a guy who I will refer to as "The Kid". He said he was going to get a $60,000 'first time farmer loan' from the USDA. He has 2 LLC's (limited liability company's). His 2 LLC's never made any sense to me until today. For things to work, he needs them both.

Check out his websites:

and see it you can figure out what he's doing. You might also want to check out:
or just the local dirt site.

He mostly lived at his parents house in Sauk County. His dad is a nice guy, who works in the state capital, he's the number one assistant to the Assemblyman from his district. Thus his dad's job is political, and it's election time. His mom said she was a guidance councilor at the local high school, I don't know if that's true. She does show up on the internet doing business under her maiden name as a travel agent. The kid address's them as Tom & Jane, not mom and dad. Some day he'll realize why that's disrespectful perhaps, perhaps not.

My attorney said the lease was very preditory, I didn't understand that scam until May of this year. I'll go into that scam first. It's a rental scam. It goes like this...... Landlord rents you a place. In the lease he puts a clause in that says if you leave the place before the end of the lease he gets a 2 month penalty. So, if the lease ends at the end of August, if he can get you out at the end of June, he gets 14 months money for 10 months occupancy. Then he can use all of July to get the place ready for the next sucker, and rent the place out to said sucker in August. In May he started saying he wanted something from me in writing that said I'd be out at the end of June. Why I asked. He told me he always lived with friends, I wasn't his friend. Where in the lease does it say anything about friends? At the end of June he turned off the hot water, and all through June and July he and the Chinaman who actually owns the property would visit on weekends and badger me to get out. After I left the property he filed for eviction, I suppose thinking that when I didn't know anything about it, he's get a huge default judgement. Nope, you have to serve somebody, he didn't know that, but next time he'll factor that into the scam and hurt his next victim that way probably.

My attorney and I were in court for the second filing. First time was dismissed, lack of service, he refiled same day, I found out about it, showed up, judge dismissed it, and said he could file for the money part of the process. Now I show up in CCAP with an eviction action that was dismissed, twice.

I found the Freshest Farms website easily enough. It was only after I found the Pantry Garden stuff did the whole thing makes sense.

What's really pathetic is that nobody cares. Leave it there for the next victim to wander into, it's ok.

The Chinaman who actually owns the property is getting audited. How I know the Chinaman is getting audited by the tax people is his property tax is an open record, anybody can see it. In answering this eviction action may lawyer said get everything you can get on the actual owner of the property as well as the kid. So, I'm in the city/county building looking up the tax records and the lady who's helping me with the database says casually, "He's taking the lottery credit. He can't do that on rental property." He can't eh? Sure enough, across the hall, I find out that his claim that he'd lived there for a couple of years was a lie. The phone install guy told me about his first tenants who had quite the moving out celebration, VERY destructive. His second tenants left a business card in a drawer in the kitchen, I contacted them. The kid was the 3rd and the kid and the Chinaman claimed that they loved each other. But it was no sweat to get revenue to want this guys records, so if the kid would have left me alone, the Chinaman wouldn't be in the hot water he's in or will be in.

Now for the kid. I'll go into revenue and tell the lady to go to the first 2 websites listed, and I'll present my theory of what's going on. I'll offer to provide her with photo copies of my rent checks. Did the kid include the schedule 'what ever' in his income tax filing that landlords need to file? They won't tell me but they'll start digging. If he's accepted a check for any of the produce that he claims on a website that he sells or has for sale, there will be a paper trail. Kid, you should have left well enough alone.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

And knowing who your friends aren't

Years ago one of the original Union people, a fellow named Jack S. told me that because of Max Factor (nickname of a former Union driver), I would never drive at Union. I believed him. He's an honest fellow, nice guy, and I'm told a really good pool player. So when I applied at Union I asked if it was true. I know a large number of people in Union, have known them for years, and if it was true I could take it. You can't fight reality, so there's no use in trying. Both the HR director and top manager told me it wasn't the case. I've known that top manager for many years. I took him at his word.

Then they said I lied on my application so I could never be hired and never reapply. No, I didn't. I pointed out that my answer was correct, in the context of the wording on the application. That resulted in the unpulling of my application and an interview. I absolutely told the truth in the interview. I had yet to see all the Union employee materials, so didn't know what my "rights" were, but according to the published policies of Union, that was the way to go. Then I started encountering all this "dark" business. The top manager and a fellow named Jason interviewed me and the top manager told me that Jason thought I was too "dark" to hire, but he'd stuck up for me and I was hired. He then went through a litany of if you do this that or the next thing in your probationary 6 months, "I'll fire you." I sat there wondering if it was worth wasting my time, and said to myself I can behave perfectly for 6 months, is it really possible they'll treat me fairly. No, they weren't going to treat me fairly.

What I believe went on is Jason and the manager discussed being fair. Jason's position was that fair would be to not jerk me around. The manager's position was that I needed to be fired so I could never come back, and they'd find a way to do that. Thus, I was hired. Now, will the cops issue me a permit? They did. On to the next phase of the game, train the new hire, then fire the new hire at the earliest opportunity. I was to get 3 training shifts, 2 if I was good enough at it. I opted for 3 because they have equipment that is different, you mostly bid on calls by using a button on a meter like thing rather than by voice. The trainers from the first 2 days thought I was good. The trainer on the second day would have signed off on me. Then came the 3rd day.

The 3rd and to be last of the training shifts was with the guy referenced in the post 'why the guy doesn't like me'. I'm not sure if it matters all that much, the manager would have probably waited longer to make everything look good, but on that Friday afternoon I knew that fellow had it in for me. The manager said he'd think it through over the weekend, so he called me on Monday and said that it stood, that a fellow who'd held a grudge for 25 years since he was 19 over something silly was allowed to discriminate against me, I was fired.

I need to seek out legal advice on this. If it wasn't legally such a dicey thing, that manager wouldn't have been so guarded about the whole thing. He wouldn't have gone to such lengths to try to convince me it was a fair process. He wouldn't have made the cab driver wisecrack that I wasn't railroaded because railroading required a committee, I was assassinated.

Would I want to drive there? Well, for a 20 year driver, it's a good place to drive. Insurance and all, it's good. You won't get rich. Why didn't I go there years ago? 20 years ago, I could have gotten in, but in more recent times I knew this would happen. Would anybody stick up for me? NO. Why? They don't want to get fired, and objecting on the basis of fundamental right and wrong would be risking getting fired, even if you've got years of clean driving there. I found out that they canned the manager of the garage not too long ago, and I'll bet that stinks too, but it flew.

Bottom line, that manager could have said to me Jack was telling me the truth as he saw it. Then he could have said something like Jack is a real smart guy, and I'd have said ok, thanks for being up front, and I would have let it go. He didn't do that. He saw it as protecting the interests of the company to do what he did. Ok. Since this is a game of chess I should make each move be the best move on the board. Any truly good chess player knows that trappy play assumes your opponent is going to blunder, and that ultimately, if your opponent doesn't blunder will compromise your position. But I doubt that manager plays chess, he plays bridge, and in a bridge game the hand lasts for 3 or 4 minutes, is gone and forgotten, and the next hand is played. When my next move is ready, I'll touch the piece that I will move and place it in it's new square.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Knowing who your friends are

I want to thank an old friend who guided me in the direction of the opening chapter of the book. With the opening chapter to build on I think the material in this blog will be enough for a book. My initial thought was to make it the armed robbery, but thats dark material as they would say at Union Cab. The armed robbery is exciting, or at least I thought it was, but it's hard to build on, and I found that out when I started writing the book with that as a beginning.

I think I'm going to go for the happiest cab story. After all, few people realize that I pioneered cruising State Street and that plus the actual happiest cab story will fill out a first chapter nicely. Pioneered cruising? Yep, it were me. How did that go? I guess I can share that, I've got 15 minutes to spare.

When I first started driving nights, the dominant voices on the radio were The Hog, and Curley. Curley wanted to be everything The Hog was and more, and this particularly meant being rude, crude, and abusive over the radio, to the drivers. I resisted, and the usual retaliation came back. I'm the dispatcher, I control your income, you won't make any money, you'll quit! They were really proud of all the little tactics they employed in being unfair. Holding calls until some driver was on top of it or someone was past it for instance. Holding calls? Yes, refusing to put the call on the radio right away. Refusing to hear your bid was another favorite. What to do, I had to make some money.

It was always taken as illegal to drive up and down State Street looking for customers. In the old days nobody did it. I decided, what the hell, I'll do it until I get a ticket. In the beginning it was really great being the only cab on State Street around 10:00 pm. I well remember The Wombat once getting in my face for doing it. I also well remember keying the mike one night when it was slow, and telling Curley I'd booked $100.00 between 9:30 and 11:30 pm., when there was NOTHING on the board.

Now, many people cruise State Street. I've never heard of anybody getting a ticket for doing it. Technically there are ordinances that cover it and the cops could probably write a bunch of tickets, but they've never seemed inclined to start doing that.

Thanks David for influencing the start of the book. One of the best friends I or any other real cab driver will ever have, no matter how anything ever plays out. See, you never realize who your best friends really are.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Why the guy doesn't like me

Back in the '80's, I briefly delivered a few pizzas. Pizza delivery is NEVER worth the wear and tear that it does to the cars, and it is for this reason that pizza shops are always looking for drivers with their own cars. One night between delivery runs, the kid who was making pizzas offered the opinion that pizza makers ought to make as much money as skilled trades, iron workers or electricians for instance. I said that was nonsense, and that kid hence forth made it plain that he thought I was a real jerk. I promptly forgot about it until this morning.

Why did I dredge that up from my memory, and why am I including it here? I'm not sure I will ever share that in print. It depends on circumstances that have yet to unfold. This entry will most likely get deleted, and I will try to again forget about it.

Speaking of that guy, I did actually refuse to do something he tried to get me to do. I had this handicapped fellow in the front seat who wanted to go someplace specific that wasn't the destination on the slip. He started trying to tell me that since it was a charge to an account, the destination HAD TO BE the destination on the slip. I took the handicapped man to his destination, and there was no further discussion of it. When we got there, I parked just exactly like the passenger wanted, got his walker out of the trunk, helped him exactly as much (not more either) as he wished, made sure he was comfortable, he thanked me, and we pulled away. To have left that fellow 3 blocks away, on the other side of East Washington would have been almost criminal. And I don't have to offer to put it in writing, it is in writing, right here.