My faith in humanity

Story #1:

On July 1, we were at Yellowstone on vacation. We parallel parked on the side of a road between two cars for one trail because the lot was full. When we came back from the hike, Lego was hungry, so I put up the sun shade, sat in the driver’s seat of the car, and fed him under a blanket. Jon Boy and the rest of my family waited on or around the car for us to finish. It was then that an enormous RV drove by. From inside the car, I thought, “He’s cutting it too close.” A second or two later, the RV hit our front bumper from the side. The car rocked a little, but there was little damage.

 Jon Boy flagged the driver down; otherwise, I’m pretty sure he would have just kept driving. Once out of the RV, the driver started complaining to Jon Boy, saying that two wrongs don’t make a right (wait . . . what?) and that we were partially responsible for the accident (wait . . . what?) because we weren’t parked in a real spot. Um, no red curb, buddy. People park on the sides of roads all the time. That doesn’t give you permission to hit them.

But he persisted. Jon Boy got his insurance information from him, but we didn’t call the police. The damage was slight, and anyway, we didn’t know that rangers are the effective police in a national park. My dad did get a few pictures.

When we filed a claim for the damage, we were pretty confident that he was 100% responsible for the accident. A few days later, his insurance adjustor called and said her insured was only willing to accept 50% of the responsibility and would only pay for 50% of our damages. We would have to file a claim with our insurance for the other 50%. She would work with our adjustor to determine fault.

Luckily, we just found out that everyone but the guy who hit us found it laughable that he didn’t think he was 100% responsible. In fact, our adjustor told us that if you hit a parked car, even if that car is parked in the middle of the freeway, you are responsible for the accident. When you are driving, it is your job to not hit parked cars. So it’s all resolved, more or less, and in our favor. Hooray!

Story #2:

 About two weeks ago, I was on Jon Boy’s computer because mine was being fixed. His instant messaging program was open, and a stranger IMed him asking about the Chanel handbag he was selling on ebay.

Those of you who know us well know that we would never in a million years own a Chanel handbag, and if we had one, we probably wouldn’t sell it on ebay. I told the girl this. She didn’t seem to get it at first, and she kept asking how big it was. I kept repeating that my husband was not, in fact, selling a bag, which meant that someone was using his account to sell said bag. Turned out that someone was not a native English speaker (the bag was “fashionable and elegance”), and there were about two dozen other Chanel bags that Jon Boy was also, apparently, selling.

Jon Boy changed his password and closed all the auctions, but a few people had already bought “handbags” (in other words, paid money for something they would never receive) from him. Ebay closed his account, but it’s now back open, thank goodness. It appeared that many other accounts had been hijacked; Chanel purses with the same broken English were for sale all over ebay that day. I assume ebay has sorted everything out by now, and I hope the perpetrators have been traced to a PayPal account or a bank account.

The moral of the story:

Even though I have come face to face with both stupid and evil people this month, I still have my faith in humanity. Even though the RV driver tried to pin the blame for his accident on us, he didn’t get away with it. The law is on the side of honest, innocent people, at least in our case. And even though a few people were robbed in Jon Boy’s name, his account was frozen before anything got too out of hand.

Maybe I’m naive. Actually, change that maybe to a probably. But I don’t care. I’d rather believe that most people are mostly good and that the idiots and criminals are the exception to the rule.


  1. I agree with you that I think jerky people are the exception to the rule.

    Just a rule of thumb to remember about car accidents: the insurance company expects you to negotiate/complain. If you don’t, they pay the least they have to. If you do, they’ll often pay a lot more than they pretend to be willing to.

    My aunt works for Mercury Auto Insurance and she says that they have to start their offer out a lot smaller than what they’re actually authorized to do.

    Just so you know.

  2. Wow. Crazy stuff. Glad it worked out all right.

    Bit of a shame, though. I really wanted one of those Chanel purses Jon Boy was selling.

  3. Unfortunately, it looks like you missed the window of opportunity on that amazing deal.

    The best part of the RV accident story is that one week ago, he filed a claim with our insurance for damages to his vehicle. I called our adjustor and told him my side of the story (which apparently matched the RV driver’s—he may be an idiot, but at least he’s not a liar), and he was simply flabbergasted. That’s when he said the bit about how if you’re parked in the middle of the freeway and someone hits you, you’re still not at fault.

    And when my adjustor called his adjustor to get this claim straightened out, his adjustor just laughed. Apparently she went around and around with the RV driver trying to explain that there’s no way he’s not at fault, but he insisted that she file a claim anyway. So she did just to humor him, even though she knew it wouldn’t go anywhere. It’s not all resolved yet, but it will be.

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