Opinion > The Ninja Girl
Conned by NU*

Written by Liza Gaspar posted in Ilocos Sentinel on Monday, April 8th, 2013

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ID+for+FranchisingPHI just came from meeting someone I vaguely know. I feel so used – this must be how ladies and men of the streets feel after doing something they don’t want, but have to. The only difference from my experience is I was the one who paid.

Invitation from Hell
A few days ago, I got this text from David:

Would you like to be part of MILLIONAIRES’ Night?
Oscar awards of entrepreneurs. May small award ako, want to celebrate w/ few friends. Ü [I have an award]
Self-made Millionaires will share their success journey—how they transition from ordinary job/business to a life of FREEDOM. PICC, with celebration dinner by Via Mare 6-9pm.
I have few tickets left. Gusto mo sumama?ü [Do you want to come?]

So, I interpreted the invitation as something I don’t have to pay for. In my brain, there was no connection between being there to celebrate his success with me having to pay for the privilege to watch him receive an award.
When I met David for the ticket, imagine my shock when he asked me to pay P250 and P500 if I am attending the celebratory dinner.
My brain froze at: “What the f*ck?!? Are you kidding me?” thought. It was really bad manners of him not to inform me about the fee beforehand. It was also mercenary of me to think I am getting a free dinner. Hah! Celebratory dinner, my foot! It’s kanya-kanyang bayad (Dutch treat).
Is this how network marketers are being taught to sell? By bamboozling people? By inviting someone to an event with the guise of it being free then at the end of it, they go palm up saying, “By the way you owe me so and so for this event?”
I have a few friends working for this skin care network, and from time to time I would get invitations to events. Fortunately, they are good people and they always include a caveat that an event is NOT free, if that is the case.
Would you do me a favor? Can you reread the text invitation? Am I very off in my interpretation that the event was free? Or would you have arrived at the same conclusion?

Survival of the Fittest
I don’t begrudge David the opportunity to earn extra money on top of his day job. I just wish that he had been more forthcoming.
If he is a very close friend, paying to see him receive an award is something I wouldn’t have minded. But, the thing is, he isn’t.
Lesson learned: some people have hidden agendas.
From now on whenever I get invited, I will always ask all the facts before I decide.
Anyway, no matter how strenuously I think of an excuse for David’s behavior – it is his standard operation procedure or I jumped the gun or it’s just P250 anyway or what have you – I wouldn’t want the same thing to happen again. Celebratory dinner, my foot.

***
Interesting Money Facts. I was disturbed by a Hollywood showbiz report I read the other week. It goes like this – Steven Tyler has spent US $5-6 million on drugs during his entire career.
First, drugs are bad. Second, US $5-6 million! That can feed an entire small African country where hundreds are dying every day from famine.
I know, I know. It’s his money and he can spend it anyway he wants. But goodness gracious how many powder can one man stuff in his nose?

*A pun hinting at the skin care networking company which David belongs to.

Liza Gaspar is a wealth coach and personal finance enthusiast. She spends her free time helping out with the projects of the Rotary Club of Makati McKinley (rcmmckinley.org) and the Gerry Roxas Leadership Awardees (grlawardees.org). Visit her Web site at thegirlninja.com, email her at liza@thegirlninja.com, or visit her at facebook.com/annalizagaspar and TheGirlNinja.com.

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