You Ain’t Got To Lie, Craig


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I wish there was even an ounce of exaggeration in this comic. Of the last 20 things I’ve sold on Craigslist the other party has flaked out with no reply or response of any kind at least 15 times. Some of them have gone so far as to schedule a pickup time and place and simply not show. You… you just can’t do that to people. You can’t just fuck with peoples’ lives like that. I mean, you KNOW I am sitting in that Target parking lot off the freeway and you don’t even bother to let me know that you just aren’t coming? That’s sociopathic behavior. That’s worse than murder and should be punished accordingly.

One guy went as far as to tell me he was coming to get whatever I was selling (probably something computer related), call me when he was on the way, call me AGAIN telling me he was close and STILL NOT SHOW UP! What happened to him? Was he kidnapped by a family of Yeti? Was he completely incased in cement and buried on the Moon? Did he simply just cease to be? WAS HE EVER REAL TO BEGIN WITH?! IS CRAIGSLIST EVEN A REAL THING?! Oh, right… all those hookers got murdered, so it must be real. But that hooker murderer went to jail. These flake-out, no-show pieces of shit just get to go on with their merry, narcissistic lives. That isn’t justice and it isn’t America. In the Founding Fathers’ day, if you placed an ad in the local almanac offering to trade your silver smithery services in exchange for a gently used ox yoke or a half hour of discrete accompaniment to the alley behind Ye Olde Denny’s and you didn’t hold up your part of the bargain, they would chop your head off with a crossbow! Do you know how long that would take? A really god damn long time.

My daughter has been drawing characters from the Tiny Titans comics and I have been posting them on my Tumblr. They are, in a word, cutedorable.

Some website is doing a webcomics March Madness with over 100 comics. I am on the list and I am currently against a comic called Trenches. I only know of about 10 comics on the list, and I don’t care about the outcome, but it’s neat to see your friends win stuff, even if it’s silly. Go vote or whatever.

COMMENTERS: Am I alone? Is it just me? Does my email give off some kind of “I am not a person and do not serve common courtesy” vibe? Have you ever had this experience with Craigslist, eBay or any other type of classified ad situation? What about crazy Craigslist stories? Do you ever think people buy cheap stuff on Craigslist just to case your house for eventual home invasion? No? Just me? Well you do now.

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  1. I have a very strict policy when dealing with anyone on the interwebs. (I even meant to type internet. Dammit xkcd).
    If you start spelling words in an E-mail/Facebook/text message like you're a middle school student sending a text message, I won't deal with you. Some people suck at spelling/grammar/make mistakes, I can deal with that. But if you are too lazy to type out "for" and so you replace it with "4", I'm going to be too busy to have any fucks to give you.

    Also, I seem to be the first comment on your website far too often. Clearly I need to spend less time with twitter open and more time doing other things 😛

    • One thing Ive noticed with craigslist in particular is people send the most incomprehensible nonsense emails, yet when I meet them (expecting either a non English speaker, a 12 year old or an illiterate cromag) they seem perfectly able of coherent communication. Do the majority of people just assume all typed communication is informal and thus not worthy of REAL worlds, complete sentences or punctuation of any kind?

      • Heh. This is why I don't play in chat rooms, or IM. I can't keep up, because I'm correcting my mistakes, etc. By the time I post, the topic has moved on!

  2. Joel, I'd be happy to share my stories of classified ad situations with you, why don't you meet me to hear all about them. I'll meet you at 3:10 am in the car park of your local Walmart. I'll show up, honest, I promise!

  3. Ah, Craigslist. With the amount of people on there who are total flakes, one wonders why the dating/personals sections still seem to be popular…

    I wouldn't worry about Craigslist responders casing your joint unless they toss out casual questions that will tell them whether or not you live by yourself–in which case they are totally casing your joint and you should tell them that you live with six linebackers and a pit bull on meth.

  4. Those Tiny Titans are excellent. I love the art pages in the back of that book. So much love for those versions of the characters. My daughters, who have had a subscription since issue #1, are very upset about the book getting canceled. Hopefully Superman Family Adventures will fill the gap.

  5. Yeah, Craigslist just breeds sketchiness. One of the problems with it is that since it's set up to be completely anonymous, there really isn't any backlash for not showing up. If you were required to register, we'd have more of an eBay-like situation wherein users could be tracked and rated for such things. Craig, if you're listening, get to work on that shit stat, man. It took me forever to get rid of that damn treadmill my wife bought on a whim and never used.

  6. I have to admit that I wasn't expecting to see a "Friday" reference for a comic name. Nice one. Maybe they just get high after responding and forget all about it.

  7. That's exactly how every CL transaction works for me too. I usually assume they are stealing my lawnmower from the backyard while I wait in the Walmart parking lot. Then when I go back to buy a new lawn mower, they steal whatever I was selling. It's a closed loop.

  8. This isn't unique to Craigslist. The local CL sucks but I live in a region of small towns so there's this print/online paper called the Free Trader. This sort of behavior is commonplace and really infuriating. Especially when I have to go out to a town about 10 miles away just to meet someone there. So I getchya on that front.

  9. We don't have CL here, but we have a couple of similar websites. My boyfriend often tries to sell things from them and he has had similar experiences. He also has people buying, oh I don't know, an AppleTV or a cellphone or technology of some sort, and then call back to say "It's not working!", only to have them come back to check and it's working fine, they're just too clueless to read the manual. At this point we should have figured out that only morons buy those things second hand. People who know these things buy them when they come out, I guess.

  10. Uh, "The Trenches" is the combined effort of Mike Krahulik, Jerry Holkins, and Scott Kurtz. The Penny Arcade and PVP guys. You're probably screwed.

    • Fight the good fight! Your comic is far better than Trenches. That was the only matchup on that page between webcomics I actually read.

      As far as Craigslist goes… maybe the buyer did arrive… and saw your beard. At that point, they gave up, knowing that you could best them in a battle of strength, wits, or sexiness, and decided it was better not to risk it.

    • The problem with "The Trenches" is that it's so new that the comic hasn't really had the time to develop. As it stands right now, there's no personality and the characters and the plot is a solid MEH. The best part is the commentary, when they share actual stories about game-testing and development. I go every Tuesday/Thursday for the commentary, not the comic.

  11. I've actually had unusually excellent luck using craigslist. When I bought or sold things people always showed up. Believe it or not I also met my husband through posting a craigslist personal ad. We've been married 4 years and are now expecting our first child.

    • Yeah, but when it comes time to deliver your kid, you're going to be standing alone in a Walgreens parking lot, holding the "goods" and he's going to be a no show!

      [also congrats]

  12. SKREE! The puny flesh rats are aware of us. Quickly, my winged brethren, we must secure new avenues for pterrorizing them into tending the brood rookeries! ka-KAWW!

  13. Yeah, I've been trying to sell a SHIT LOAD (that is the accurate description for how many I have) White Wolf RPG books (mostly vampire, but some mage and werewolf and others) on craigslist. I had someone ask how much for ALL THE BOOKS and if she could get a deal, it was a special treat for her boyfriend who was from Louisana and lost everything in the flooding and was a huge nerd, she could pick up BLAH, oh and she could take my forgotten realms stuff to. I sent her a price list, gave her like a 25% discount, reminded her there were some duplicates, etc. NEVER HEARD BACK. Sent a follow up email. NO REPLY. Girl, why you gotta break my heart like this? I WANT THESE BOOKS GONE. So, uh. Anyone (especially in/near Chicago) want a massive amount of pre-relaunch WW books? Some of the vampire books are BLUE that is how old school they are. DO NOT TOY WITH ME MY HEART CANNOT TAKE IT.

    On the other hand, I've had good luck selling book cases on craigslist, but they are kind of a hot commodity and I don't price my used flatpack book cases excessively high.

    • You could always try eBay or AbeBooks… look them up at least, some of the older stuff is kinda collectible! And there's always Half Price Books 😀

  14. This comic… it finally explains it. It all makes since now. THAT'S why they never show up, it's so obvious in hind sight that they must have all been taken away by pterodactyls.

    Though it still leaves so many questions about the time I arranged to get meet pterodactyl off craigslist, and it never showed up…

    • It was probably out kidnapping other Craigslist using humans. Or perhaps it got taken by a larger pterodactyl, as that's how Craigslist always arranges it.

  15. Mostly I'm on the buying end of Craig's List transactions — but I've learned the sad lesson that if I want to FIND something on CL I have to imagine every possible semi-phonetic misspelling of the article and search for that, too. Then I just feel dirty.

  16. Maybe the aliens from the movie "The Forgotten" use CL as some sort of alien or slickdeals for abductions. It is an experiment in consumerism to see if the bond between seller and buyer is so strong that it cannot be broken.

  17. My wife and I hired movers off Craiglist several years ago (because we had less $ back then). They had references and checked out. They were polite, well spoken and we confirmed the date and time. We spoke on the phone two days beforehand to make sure everything was set and once again gave the dimensions of the refrigerator and sofa we needed moved. They didn't show. So we call them up 30 minutes after the agreed upon time and their response was "But you didn't confirm-confirm."
    They eventually showed up and grudgingly moved the sofa and frig. The best part was they accidentally gave me a huge discount over the originally quoted price and acted like they were overcharging me the whole time. We ended up paying about 45% of the originally quoted fee, which wasn't all that much to begin with.

      • My parents own a moving company. My dad started the business when he was still in high school, and has done really well for himself since.

        He's a douchebag, but it's not because he's a mover. Some of his employees, though…

        • Obviously i made a VERY BROAD generalization, but in my personal experience I can think of few industries more built around selling you one thing, delivering (NPI) another and trying to charge you twice as much as you were quoted before they unload your stuff. My last movers broke, scratched and basically ruined about half of my furniture then tried to charge me for extra boxes. My furniture was basically destroyed because they tried to cram my entire house into a truck half the size of the one they were supposed to bring. It's a fucking shady industry.

          • I've heard more than my fair share of horror stories from the guys who work for us. I am occasionally astounded at the lack of respect for other people's stuff that other movers seem to have, especially because it gives the good guys such a bad name. Then again, I used to work in IT and I have seen some horrible, horrible things being done to computers… *shudder*

            Anyway, I wasn't particularly offended (because your comments are pretty true) and was making an attempt at a lame joke. Ah well, they can't all bring the LOLz.

  18. I have had the same problem. I put it down to lack of common courtesy. Many people just don't think about calling to cancel if something different comes along. My biggest problem is getting replies from obvious phishers. When I was trying to sell my spinning wheel (a thing to make yarn), I kept getting responses asking about my motorcycle wheels and asking me to give my personal info so they can send me a check. Even though I included pictures and a link to the manufacturer's info.

  19. Doc Nickel out at The Whiteboard has a great Craigslist comic. He of course indulges in the full verbally-abuse-the-moron bent but does it with sarcasm so pure it would kill you if you took it intravenously.

  20. This is one good thing about freecycle, you report people for not showing. Of course since stuff is free, most people show up. Kijiji is more popular than Craigslist in Canada, my sister has the same complaints, after making appointments, people show up only 20% of the time. She did have a nice Hutterite man show up at the wrong time and leave her some farm fresh eggs, despite several "I still want that….", he never came back, I guess he couldn't get away from the colony.

  21. Such sketchy behavior is not limited to online ad no-shows. I've sat in on plenty of job interviews where the applicant was earnest, eager and eventually hired, only to never show up for the job. Happened amazingly often. Maybe people apply for jobs and respond to ads while in a manic phase and crash soon after?

    • I've known people not turn up for job interviews. Which, to be honest, when evryone in my feild is struggleing to get interviews; I have no explanation for.

    • I used to hire people (mostly designers) for a living and I think what they were doing is taking more interviews while they waited to hear about the job they really wanted. If they accidentally got two jobs I bet they thought it would be nearly impossible to explain so they just did the douchiest thing possible and didnt show up.

  22. Skynet is messing with you. It knows you know too much and wants to dri34908n aafj aweioh 4[8t ygz;vnaoiru fgq3h49ptyh

  23. How about showing up and the item in the picture is not the item for sale?
    I went to look at a shiny new bumper for my truck and was presented with a spray-painted-chrome bumper with dings and rust…

    At least it was only a 10 minute drive.

  24. I'm probably jinxing myself by admitting this, but I've had almost entirely good experiences with CL, both as a buyer and as a seller. I've purchased lots of kitchen gear (blender, ice cream maker, etc.) and sold all kinds of stuff (from lamps to cars), but I've only ever had one or two no-shows.

    Oddly, freecycle seems to really bring them out for me – you'd think that, since they're getting something *for free* people would do you the courtesy of at least letting you know if they can't pick it up, but no. At least it's easy to line someone else up to take whatever it is you're unloading.

  25. Most fucking annoying thing like that that has ever happened to me: Years ago we found a metal lathe with a 7' bed on it for like $200, which is to say a FUCKING SWEET DEAL, but it was in a town literally about an eight-hour drive away. Which we would need to make in the pick-up because it was a huge piece of equipment. So we told the guy we totally wanted it, that we would absolutely buy it, and that we were leaving right then (it was morning, luckily) and that we would call when we hit town for directions at about five o'cock or whatever. Not sure now if we left our cell phone number with him but I'd be surprised if we didn't. So we drive for EIGHT GODDAMNED HOURS, in a PICKUP (you want to talk poor mileage) to get to this town, call his house, ask for directions, and are told, by his wife, that there probably wasn't any point because her husband was, at that very moment, loading it into the pickup of someone else.

    He fucking sold it out from under us, knowing full well that we were on our way there, and that it was an eight-hour drive (and we made it in less than that), and with our contact info to get hold of us if he was afraid we'd bailed on him. But, see, someone else came by and wanted it too so he sold it to them instead of, say, telling them he had someone coming by shortly from WAY out of town to get it, but hey, give me your number and if they haven't come by by say the morning I'll call you up and you can have second dibs, okay? No, instead he goes, apparently, "Well, I have some people who just drove half-way across the bloody province to buy this who should be here any minute, buuuuut well you're here now so you take it. What do I care?"

    So kind of the complete opposite of your own experience, but still annoying as all shit. Fuck, I'm STILL pissed off and that was around 2003. Asshole.

    FYI: It is not worth it to drive eight hours to Salmon Arm, BC just to have dinner and go home again.

  26. I have stopped even bothering so selling on Craigslist; the flakes are too bad for my blood pressure. My useless junk just piles up in my office now, since I have no easy way to dispose of it.

  27. I could've flown you there in 2 and a half hours.

    …of course, I wouldn't have been able to haul that thing back in a Cessna…
    (at least you could've sat on it with nothing, but a loin cloth and a sharpened stick!)

  28. Dude! Like 3 weeks ago I was the guy trying to buy the stuff. I was literally waiting in the Target parking lot, then eventually called to see if he was okay, and it turns out he had decided to sell it to someone else. This was in a neighboring town to the one I live in.
    I didn't freak out though. I just fired those laser beams out of my eyes like Darkseid has, that turn corners and find people, and the beams banished him to another dimension. It was the DMV dimension, to be specific, where he can learn the joy of eternally waiting for something that will never come.

  29. I just wanted to share that this is by far my favorite strip of yours, and I send it out to everyone I know, ever, who has a bad experience on Craigslist ever since you published it. I know you're switching to a more serialized format, but do please keep some strips like this!

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