Criminal Minds vs. Craigslist

Recently I’m finding that my Criminal Minds habit is beginning to conflict with my Craigslist habit.

Okay listen, Craigslist and I have a mixed relationship. Well even before Craigslist, there were the classified ads, the “freebies” section in the newspaper. Do you remember when newspapers were still all the rage? It’s strange to realize how different things become in just a few short years. Anyway, buying secondhand has its pros and cons. I’ve bought second hand appliances, second hand furniture, second hand pets…

I remember one particular weekend when I was living in a rental house in Ypsi. The roommates and I decided to get a washer and dryer secondhand since there wasn’t one in the house. This particular Saturday morning, we had scoured the freebies, made some phone calls, and picked up my brother (who was in high school at the time and drove a classy Aerostar minivan). We headed to a shady neighborhood in a shady part of time. The man met us in the unkempt yard. He was frightening. My high school brother was frightened enough to stay in the car while the roommate and I went in to check out the appliances. The house was scary and it smelled bad. We wanted out but at this point he’s telling us about the washer and volunteering to plug it in since “it’s been settin’ awhile.”  Um. Okay. The guy plugs the washer in and starts the spin cycle, which immediately starts clunking abnormally and begins to smell of burning rubber. Good salesman that he was he assured us that it worked great, “Let’s shut her down and let it set awhile. It probably just needs to set.” Um. Didn’t you just tell it it’s been setting awhile? Hmm. The roommate and I got out of there as quickly as possible where the faithful high school brother got us out of the neighborhood as quickly as possible in that classy aerostar van.  I seem to remember some pretty funny comics being drawn of the shady washer guy, “Let’s just let her set awhile.”  Ah the memories.

In more recent history, I’ve gotten fabulous couches (twice), and a few other things. I sold my dining room set last year on Craigslist to some very friendly people who drove two hours to get it and there was no problem (and it didn’t creep me out that they knew where I live). When I was moving, I posted things for free several times (box of wood scraps, garden edging, etc) and people came and took them away. Anyway, my experiences have been generally positive.


Recently I’ve been watching a lot of a TV show called Criminal Minds. This particular FBI team profiles killers to find and catch them. It’s intriguing, mind bending, creepy, and I really enjoy it. However, I have friends who are way too creeped out by it because they basically try to get inside the messed up minds of these criminals– way too creepy for some people– so don’t say you weren’t warned. But I don’t have nightmares generally, don’t let TV shows get inside my head, etc. so I really like it. Having recently gotten cable with DVR (it is about the same price to have internet with or without cable with this deal), I’ve been recording and watching a lot of Criminal minds (usually as my hour of relaxing between painting/projecting and crashing). Anyway, this particular night, I’d watched a pretty gruesome episode where the criminal they find is this guy who abducts and assaults women and has them all tethered in his big red barn on his property. The next day, I’m scheduled to pick up a sink from some guy on Craigslist.

Imagine this: It’s a gorgeous fall day. I’ve been emailing back and forth with some guy about a sink I found on craigslist. My CRV seats are cleared and folded down so the sink will fit. I call to get directions for our after work meeting time. He sends me out west of town (gorgeous area), tells me to take a left on this street and then go to the top of the hill and turn left into the big red barn driveway. He’ll meet me there. “Is there an address?” “No, no address, just turn at the barn, you can’t miss it.”  Sure enough, I didn’t miss it. I pull in next to the barn and park. The birds are singing, the bugs are humming, and there is no one in sight. Suddenly my brain yells at me, “You’re a sitting duck! A sitting duck!!” I take a few deep breaths, note how many houses I can see (and run to if necessary). I call the guy on the phone and he says he’ll be right over, he was at his parents’ a few houses down. A good looking young-ish man shows up on a golf cart. He doesn’t seem like a frightening criminal. He points to the gate “I’ll open that gate and we’ll drive to the back barn to get the sink.”  Inner voice: “The BACK BARN???? No one even knows you’re out here! You can’t go back there! Who knows what happens in the back barn?!?!”  Luckily the words of a wise friend echoed through my head “I don’t think many criminals entice nice young women with a used sink.”  So I followed him to the back barn, gave him the money, we loaded the sink, and I went on my way unscathed, chuckling at my silliness.

And that, my friends, is how a Criminal Minds habit can mess with your Craigslist habit. Don’t say you weren’t warned.

One thought on “Criminal Minds vs. Craigslist

  1. Criminal minds, nothin’. There are 2 murder cases involving craigslist that happened in the last few years outside the twin cities. 1 was a woman showing up to babysit and she was the unlucky recipient of a bullet in the head from a couple low-lifes looking for “fun”. The other was a family-man hoping to sell his used car and the creeps took his life and his $3000 car. Makes me so angry. We still use craigslist, but Mark and I always go together. We’ve had nothing but great experiences, ourselves (aside from the scammers who email – Mark uses it as an opportunity to evangelize).

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