Everyone thinks they’re too smart to fall for a scam until it happens to them. No matter how sure you are that you can spot a con, sometimes it just takes you by surprise. It doesn’t have to be a flashy stock market swindle; it can happen when you’re just walking down the street. Street con artists have worked for years at perfecting money-making scams, and they still get away with it.
Of course, that doesn’t mean you have to become paranoid, or you’d never leave the house! But there are some common scams that are worth looking out for, and some simple solutions to avoid being played for a chump.
👍 Download hack: HOW TO USE:1 - Download file, drop it on your desktop and run2- Open the file3 - Wait and Enjoy!Play care. Pigeon drop is a confidence trick in which a mark or 'pigeon' is persuaded to give up a sum of money in order to secure the rights to a larger sum of money, or more valuable object. In reality, the scammers make off with the money and the mark is left with nothing. In the process, the stranger (actually a confidence trickster) puts his money with the mark's money (in an envelope, briefcase.
10. The Pig in a Poke
A simple trick dating back hundreds of years, the Pig in a Poke involves selling an item on the street, but switching the container so the buyer ends up with nothing. Originally, this involved convincing the gullible customer that a bag contained a delicious pig, when it actually contained a worthless cat. Though it seems archaic, versions of this trick are still practiced today. The street seller shows the mark their product, but exchanges the package after the sale is made.
How to avoid it:
Don’t buy things on the street as a general rule of thumb. If you do, make sure you’ve been given what you paid for. Especially if it’s a pig.
9. Art Student Scam
You are on the street and are approached by young people claiming to be art students, selling their wares to make some extra cash for their studies. In reality, the artworks are very cheap copies and their production costs a fraction of the asking price. A particular version of the scam has been used in China, where tourists are lured to an exhibition and sold paintings at high prices.
How to avoid it:
Be careful when approached to buy goods on the street. Always be sure of what you’re paying for. If you’re a tourist, don’t get conned into making unwanted purchases through guilt or cultural embarrassment.
8. The Melon Drop
A simple trick, where the scammer intentionally bumps into someone on the street, dropping a pre-damaged item, and then insists they pay compensation. The aim is to convince the victim that they are at fault. The name of the con comes from the practice of conning Japanese tourists into paying for a dropped watermelon, at disproportionately high prices.
How to avoid it:
If you collide with a stranger, you’ll know whether it was accidental and whether payment is justified. Be polite but reasonable, and don’t immediately take the blame. Oh, and keep an eye on current melon prices.
7. Distract and Grab
The most fundamental of street cons, but an effective one. This one can take place on a busy street. One con artist creates a distraction, perhaps by causing a commotion or talking to the victim. Their accomplice takes advantage of this diverted attention to pick your pocket. There are many variants, and they all employ misdirection, so you don’t realize anything is wrong until too late.
How to avoid it:
It’s difficult to remain vigilant at all times, but try to be aware of what’s going on around you, particularly in areas where pickpockets are known to operate.
6. The False Good Samaritan Con
This trick relies on presenting the appearance of helpfulness, when in reality the con artist is profiting from the charade. A popular version of this scam involves two con artists working together. The first poses as a mugger, stealing the victim’s wallet. The accomplice then plays a hero, ‘rescuing’ the stolen item from the mugger and returning it to its owner. The aim is to receive a reward, which can then be split between the two tricksters.
How to avoid it:
You don’t want to mistrust every good deed, but make sure you stay alert and look out for acts that seem suspicious. There may be genuine heroes in the world, but they’re usually in costumes.
5. Street Mechanic
A stranger approaches a car owner with some helpful advice: something is wrong with their vehicle. It’s a problem that’s expensive to fix, but luckily the stranger has the mechanical know-how to fix the problem themselves. What the victim doesn’t know is that the stranger has created the illusion of the fault themselves (usually by something as simple as sitting on the bumper). After they’ve rectified the ‘problem’, the scammer asks for a relatively small amount of money. After all, they’ve saved the motorist hundreds of dollars!
How to avoid it:
Make sure any car trouble is checked over by a trusted source or professional mechanic. Be wary of strangers that just happen to be around in the right place at the right time.
4. Zig Zag Scam
This scam is often pulled on tourists, and involves authorities accusing people of committing a crime. The victim is then held for the offense until a large sum of money is paid as ‘bail’. Fake CCTV footage is sometimes used to provide further ‘evidence’ of the crime. It is sometimes known as the Thai Zig Zag scam, as it has been frequently reported in Bangkok.
How to avoid it:
As this scam can be perpetrated by the authorities, it is difficult to prepare for. If you’re a tourist, it is best to make sure you’re accompanied by a trusted guide, to ensure that any danger spots are avoided.
3. The Fiddle Game
The success of the Fiddle Game as a con relies on the greed of the victim. The most famous example of the trick takes place in a restaurant. A con artist claims to be unable to pay for his meal, but leaves a violin as collateral while he goes to get money. While he’s gone, his accomplice claims to be an expert on the valuation of the instrument, and offers to pay a large price for it. The hope is that the mark will offer to buy the violin from the original owner with the aim of selling it for a higher price. But by the time the purchase is made, both scammers are gone, free to share the money, and the mark is left with a worthless fiddle.
Shell Game And Pigeon Droppings
How to avoid it:
Unless you’re in some kind of violin emergency, it’s probably best not to buy one in a restaurant. But seriously, beware of overly happy coincidences.
2. Three-card Monte
One of the most familiar street cons, and yet one that continues to take people in. The gullible bystander is asked to gamble on being able to spot the odd card out, after the cards have been rearranged. The con artist often uses shills to make it appear that winning the game is possible. But through sleight of hand and misdirection, the con artist can make sure the desired card is never found.
How to avoid it:
If you don’t play, you can’t lose.
1. The Pigeon Drop
A trick that requires fooling someone into giving up money with the lure of prospective gain. The con artist convinces the mark that they should pool their resources with the promise of a larger haul down the road. But the money is switched out, and the greedy victim is left with nothing. There are a number of variants, sometimes involving convincing the mark to take off with the ‘money’ when they’re really escaping from the actual thief.
How to avoid it:
Always be suspicious of lucrative deals offered by strangers. As the old saying goes, if it seems too good to be true, it probably is.
Pellet Size Selection for Upland Game
By Randy Wakeman
In the manufacturer's shotshell ammunition catalogs you likely have read a bewildering array of 'preferred' shot size recommendations for game. But, shot size selection does not need to be nearly as disjointed and convoluted as it appears.
Manufacturer's that put patterns in their catalogs usually show both 40 yard patterns and smaller size shot, it just looks better that way. It is of no help whatsoever to you if you are taking birds that require larger shot sizes for clean kills, or if we are taking birds at 50 yards or 20 yards. Worse than meaningless, it can be downright misleading.
Heavier payloads give us the potential of larger effective spreads; there is no doubt about that. To achieve maximum effective spreads, as our shot cloud decreases in weight and pellet count, we need better pattern efficiency. The brief article on 'Patterning for American Skeet' on this site gives you the idea.
There are essentially three ranges at which birds are bagged, short (20 yards and under), medium (20 to 40 yards) and long range (40 yards and beyond). These are my own admittedly arbitrary values, but that is my experience.
Shell Game And Pigeon Drop Earrings
There are essentially three classes of upland wing-shooting game, in order of toughness: easy to kill (doves, quail, etc.), medium (pigeon, partridge and similar size), and hard (pheasant, and similar). These again are general classifications.
To find the most effective combinations for our applications, we have to define the distances at which we will take the shot, and the distances at which we will not.
Doves are very easy to kill, but there is a big difference between pass-shooting at 50 yards and closer range work. Doves are mostly feathers, so we do need good pattern density to be assured of sending them spinning with certainty. Erring on the size of heavier payloads, larger shot, and tighter pattern density gives us the ability to reach out past 50 yards.
For my purposes, 1-1/8 oz. in 12 or 16 gauge, and 1 oz. in 20 gauge using #7-1/2 shot with 65% or better pattern efficiency (roughly improved modified performance) is a good compromise. And a compromise is what all shot size/load selection is, as to have the maximum effective spread at 50 yards with a shotshell necessarily means we have a smaller effective spread at 25 yards. Thousands of dead doves have proved to me that a 1 to 1-1/8 oz. payload of #7-1/2 shot and a relatively tight choke constriction reliably kills where (for example) a 7/8 oz. improved cylinder load of #8 shot fails to perform. It means many more birds in the bag.
That said, for inside 30 yards #8 shot, 7/8 oz. loads, and ten to fifteen thousands constriction chokes do quite well. Short range, relatively light flushing birds such as quail are easier to take with our maximum effective spread at closer, more appropriate, ranges. As always, patterning at the range we are taking game reveals what we are working with in any individual gun. There is no substitute for, and no way to avoid, patterning.
Pigeons and chukars are quite a bit harder to kill quickly than doves, and the classic live pigeon load of 1-1/4 oz. of #7-1/2 shot used with a 'full' or 'extra full' choke did not come into being by happenstance. Some experienced pigeon-poppers prefer #6 shot. Again, it is a compromise of range and where we choose to set our maximum effective pattern spread. Of course, we need to pattern once again to have any idea what our shot cloud is really doing out of an individual gun at a specific range. We need to pattern at the ranges we intend to shoot, and want a maximum effective spread at that range as shown by the pattern board.
To show how absurd some of the conventional 'wisdom' has become; some of our soldier of fortune 'home defense cowboys' suggests heavy buckshot loads and extra-full chokes for 'home defense.' If only they would bother to get some rudimentary training, or fire a 1 ounce .010 in. constriction load of #6 shot into a phonebook at 5 yards, they would quickly understand that at very close ranges shotshell patterns are not 'patterns' at all, functioning as one solid glob of shot with a very small spread, even from guns with no choke constriction at all. So it goes, a story for another day.
Having the good fortune to start my shotgunning at a very early age (I owned a shotgun before I had a BB gun) and growing up on an Illinois farm, by now I have over twelve hundred wild pheasants in the meat locker. I can tell you that there is nothing better than a heavy payload of #5 shot and a 60% to 70% 40 yard pattern percentage for a good rooster load.
Consider that for years #4 lead was a standard for mallards, with generally exposed torsos. A flushing pheasant usually wants to get the heck out of Dodge, and is more inclined to show you tail feathers and his back than to give you an exposed passing shot. Though #6 shot has been used for years, #5 shot absolutely gives less runners.
To have a 100% recovery rate on a pheasant, you need to break a wing and a leg. If he falls dead, so much the better, but even if he has a few seconds of life left in him he is anchored for good and can't burrow down in tall grass or move over a few corn rows.
You'll often read about #7-1/2 shot for pheasants, which is suitable only for pen raised birds in my opinion. Conversely, you'll often read #4 shot for 'late season' pheasants. A good shot size, to be sure, but pheasants don't read the season dates. A smart pheasant is still a smart pheasant on opening day, smarter than a coyote, and wild flushes are common for mature, savvy roosters at any time of the season. #4 shot is good, but for long range shooting you have significantly less pellets per ounce with which to properly populate your pattern. # 4 has about 135 (2% antimony) pellets per ounce, while # 5 shot runs about 171 pellets per ounce. You'll need better than a 25% heavier payload to have the same pellet count.
A 2-3/4 in., 1-3/8 oz. 12 gauge Fiocchi Golden Pheasant load is fabulously effective throughout the season. To get the same pellet count with #4 shot you'll need to go to 3 inch shells to get the same maximum effective spread at the same range.
The lethality of a pellet (a round ball load) is often defined by energy, but more correctly it is the ability of the pellet to penetrate that counts. Energy values are easier to calculate than penetration ability, so that is why they are mentioned here, just as incorrectly as anywhere else. Let's take a peek at energy and drop at range, every bit as important in pellet selection as counting holes in paper.
Shell Game And Pigeon Dropping
#9 shot launched at 1200 fps has only about 7/10th of a ft. lb. of energy left at 40 yards; #7-1/2 has 1.3 ft. lbs., #6 2.2 ft. lbs., and #5 3.1 ft. lbs. Phrased differently, #5 shot has far more energy at 60 yards (2.2 ft. lbs.) than # 8 shot has at 20 yards (1.7 ft. lbs.). With perhaps the exception of quail, #8 or #9 shot is best left to the skeet field. #7-1/2 is reasonable for dove and other extremely fragile birds, with #6 good for medium birds at medium ranges. #6 shot performs poorly on pheasants except at short range. (You can place about as much energy per #5 shot pellet into a pheasant at 40 yards as you can with #6 shot at 20 yards.) Insufficient penetration means lost or crippled birds.
So, to summarize what I've experienced over the last forty years, most hunters could bag more birds more cleanly and more quickly by never using payloads less than one ounce on anything, opting for a better pattern efficiency through a combination of quality shot, shells, and chokes as proven by pattern testing in their own gun. Further, you will likely bag more birds with heavier payloads and larger shot sizes than are often recommended. You are probably a better shot than you think you are; your patterns have likely been crippling your performance.