"Hey dude, you wanna do the most epic road trip ever?"
May 21, 2019 5:52 PM   Subscribe

Y'all wanna hear a story about the time I accidentally transported a brick of heroin from Los Angeles to Seattle? I bet.
Alright, let's do this...
Original twitter thread
posted by AndrewStephens (114 comments total) 17 users marked this as a favorite
 
The perfect real-life example of Bettridge's Law.
posted by oneswellfoop at 6:04 PM on May 21 [6 favorites]


This story is A) fake as hell and B) fundamentally about a guy who made a bunch of money selling what he believed to be heroin, of unknown provenance, which is a reprehensible thing, and suffering no consequences.
posted by saladin at 6:05 PM on May 21 [101 favorites]


Slow build but worth it, at first you think the narrator is an innocent but then...
posted by subdee at 6:13 PM on May 21




Entertaining. I like the road trip flourishes and the little grace note factoids about automotive repair.
posted by Bob Regular at 6:20 PM on May 21 [3 favorites]


If it was true, admitting it - ever - in a public forum would be a very dumb move.
posted by Greg_Ace at 6:21 PM on May 21 [31 favorites]


I want to know in what universe a guy sees $40k worth of heroin packed in the hood of an old van and doesn't instantly assume the possibility of real serious scary cartel types. Also, great job providing a shitload of personally identifiable details on yourself, friends and family! After all, there were only those 5 guys in all of MS-13, and heroin cartels are well known to be gracious and forgiving to thieves, especially those who brag about ripping them off.

And most implausible, the drug dealer who willingly sets up a deal in an auto mechanic lot, a place certain to have at least some camera coverage, and then is willing to accept a scenario wherein a guy found the heroin and just decided to sit on it in the event the original owner shows up, so he can tape it over to try and hustle them, on the initial assumption that this guy drove around in and did significant maintenance work on this van and did not notice the brick of heroin.

It's engaging, but if it's not entirely a fabrication, it's a heavily, heavily twisted account of someone doing something pretty deplorable for no particular reason other than greed, in which everyone is acting as stupid as possible.
posted by neonrev at 6:21 PM on May 21 [18 favorites]


Fake as hell indeed. He posted a thread with pictures of his family in it, then later gloated about the thugs he ripped off being MS-13?

If they had been MS-13, he'll be the last one in his family to die.
posted by scruss at 6:21 PM on May 21 [8 favorites]


We were somewhere north of Los Angeles on the edge of the highway when the weapons-grade stupidity began to take hold.
posted by delfin at 6:26 PM on May 21 [68 favorites]


Just discovered The Real Bros of Simi Valley. Feels relevant.
posted by selfmedicating at 6:46 PM on May 21


...to me this didn't even feel like "guy trying and failing to get away with a lie" so much as "guy narrating an obvious work of fiction, but using his Twitter account." But I would absolutely watch this episode of Breaking Bad.
posted by nebulawindphone at 7:02 PM on May 21 [8 favorites]


Plot twist: both the narrator and the "MS-13" guys were in the same CIA orientation group way back when.
posted by b1tr0t at 7:07 PM on May 21 [16 favorites]


I was mad at being taken, but he says "story" right in the first sentence, so I probably shouldn't be.
posted by Nyrha at 7:11 PM on May 21


I'm the one who's engine knocks!
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 7:21 PM on May 21 [34 favorites]


First an old Dodge van, and then a rental Altima? What kind of gang bangers are these guys?
posted by maxwelton at 7:34 PM on May 21


Alright, let's do this...

Buckle up, Twitter!
posted by Pruitt-Igoe at 7:46 PM on May 21 [5 favorites]


"Oh, yeah, we kept a kilo in the engine bay, for luck. But the real stash was in the middle row bench seat, 100 'keys'. Fresh, man, straight from the poppy, so fresh we hadn't taken the 'how to easily sell a shit-ton of horse in a city you don't know too well and not be killed or go to prison forever' easy-start guide out of the packaging yet, comprende?"

The stereotypical gang banger looked around the van. "I don't see the middle row, amigo."

It was then I knew I had to call upon everything I had learned as a wild and wacky web developer to escape with my life...and make a cool hundred grand on the side.
posted by maxwelton at 7:51 PM on May 21 [17 favorites]


If it was true, admitting it - ever - in a public forum would be a very dumb move.

Honestly, publicly telling a story where you make La Mara look like a bitch is a dumbfuck move, regardless of veracity.

If this dude is still breathing a year from now, I’m gonna be shocked.
posted by joedan at 7:53 PM on May 21 [8 favorites]


Yes my first thought on reading to the end is: dude, you are so fucked. Life without parole doesn't mean you don't have friends on the outside who will want to show clearly and violently what happens when you cheat them.
posted by i_am_joe's_spleen at 8:25 PM on May 21 [5 favorites]


Heroin from Mexico - heroin on the West Coast - is not a white powder that looks like cocaine. It's black tar, which is what it sounds like. Or sometimes it's a black or brown powder that gets sticky as it absorbs water, but same basic idea - it's made with a different process than white powder heroin.

It's not a real story.
posted by atoxyl at 8:33 PM on May 21 [28 favorites]


My sympathy for the storyteller went down as the story progressed. Finding a drug brick in your vehicle just as the rangers arrive was humorous, but then going on about how heroin is bad, but then deciding to sell the stuff?

And then when the previous owner gets in touch, instead of say truthfully,"sorry I've sold the van", concoct a plan to rip him off? I don't think you have the moral high ground anymore.
posted by fings at 8:40 PM on May 21 [3 favorites]


Turns out that the real brick of heroin was the Twitter likes we made along the way.
posted by Halloween Jack at 8:49 PM on May 21 [50 favorites]


Great fun - thanks for posting!

If I am very lucky, when my mind starts fading late in life, I will remember every glorious detail of this story. However, my failing brain will assume it's an actual memory from my younger days (rather than something I read while late-night TV played in the background) and I will tell it repeatedly because my friends and family never tire of hearing about Grandma's wild past.
posted by she's not there at 8:59 PM on May 21 [13 favorites]


I would not be pleased if I were in any of those pictures.
posted by schadenfrau at 9:21 PM on May 21 [9 favorites]


"You know, you're a hustler Shane. What do you do?" I breathe a sigh of relief. "I'm a web developer."

As far as reinventions of 1940s Sam Spade pulp fiction literature go, people say history keeps repeating itself, but they never warn you just how lame the copies get.
posted by They sucked his brains out! at 9:30 PM on May 21 [11 favorites]


If you're going to make up a story about yourself, why make up a story in which you look like such an amoral scumbag asshole who is also stupid?
posted by Justinian at 9:32 PM on May 21 [28 favorites]


If they had been MS-13, he'll be the last one in his family to die.

I mostly know about MS-13 from stories told by Donald Trump. I'm aware that there exists a real criminal organization by that name, one which hurts real people, but it's hard to sift the kernel of fact from the heap of hyperbole.

At this point, I file stories about the extreme scariness of MS-13 in the same mental category as stories about SPECTRE, COBRA and the Death Eaters
posted by justsomebodythatyouusedtoknow at 9:43 PM on May 21 [22 favorites]


I'm such a square, but even I could tell this story was fake as hell, and this guy comes across as a mediocre stupid failson. Here is a true story where me and a friend actually discovered drugs.

Back in 2010, the two of us were at a Dominican restaurant in Washington Heights in NYC. I needed to use the bathroom, and the people in there were taking FOREVER, so I knocked hard on the door. My friend said it sounded like "a cop knock." There were two girls, and they skedaddled outside pretty fast after my "cop knock." They seemed kind of freaked.

I didn't think anything of it, but my friend, after we were both inside the bathroom, started searching the toilet. She opened the tank, and pulled out a dime bag of cocaine. As I gaped, she explained that she knew they thought I was security, and they seemed like druggies, and they'd probably hid the goods. She then promptly flushed the cocaine.

We immediately left the restaurant, taking a circuitous route back to my apartment. I was terrified of being followed. Anyway, it's a good thing I moved from New York a few days later, because that whole experience freaked me out A LOT.

I can't imagine finding a whole brick of heroin and not notifying the authorities. A dime bag of coke is one thing but-- and entire brick? And then hustling a bunch of gangsters out of money? It's stupid. It's stupid to even make up such a story about an actual gang.

This guy is fucked.
posted by suburbanbeatnik at 9:44 PM on May 21 [12 favorites]


@Popehat: You're going to make someone a perfect client someday
posted by Johnny Wallflower at 9:45 PM on May 21 [3 favorites]


naah
posted by twoplussix at 9:50 PM on May 21


This guy is fucked.

I mean, I dunno if MS-13 really bothers to track down dorks telling tales online. It's kind of bizarre to post pictures of yourself and your loved ones with any version of this story, though.
posted by atoxyl at 9:55 PM on May 21 [9 favorites]


I agree that this is too obviously fake to be anything but fiction. It reminds me of a David Sedaris story where you know it is partly true partly exaggeration but you don't know where the line is drawn and don't care because you are wrapped up in the narrative.
posted by iamnotangry at 9:59 PM on May 21 [5 favorites]


I mean, I dunno if MS-13 really bothers to track down dorks telling tales online. It's kind of bizarre to post pictures of yourself and your loved ones with any version of this story, though.

Yeah, but it seems like a pointless risk to do that. I wouldn't do it, but I guess Shane loves to live dangerously.
posted by suburbanbeatnik at 10:04 PM on May 21 [1 favorite]


Heroin from Mexico - heroin on the West Coast - is not a white powder that looks like cocaine.

Except maybe if that brick was stashed in the van since about 1979 - which would be a better story.
posted by atoxyl at 10:05 PM on May 21 [4 favorites]


I found the story entertaining.
posted by Bugbread at 10:08 PM on May 21 [3 favorites]


Back in the early 90's, I had a girlfriend who bought a vaguely sporty used car in Miami. Want to say it was a crappy Mitsubishi but can't remember. There was a pistol and a small bag of coke hidden somewhere in the car. I want to say glove box, but might have been under the seat. Can't remember. Anyways, I was always amused that she decided to keep both. "For emergencies"

Looking at Shane's followup tweets, he's apparently doubling down on it all. He indicated he doesn't really care what happened to the mechanic who watched the MS-13 deal go down. Mentioned one of his friends is beyond pissed at being named and his photo posted.

Who knows, maybe it is a story that's at least partially true. White male privilege lends itself to being oblivious, with the expectation that one will survive being oblivious and stupid. That part of the story definitely feels true. And the story as a whole feels plausible up to and including the park ranger. After that, it's either fiction or completely idiotic.

Fun read, even if the main character is quite the asshole.
posted by Teegeeack AV Club Secretary at 10:22 PM on May 21 [7 favorites]


I mean, don't let the bullshit Trump et al spew about things make you think actual cartel and drug violence isn't real and doesn't reach very far to hit at people who expose them, oppose them, or in this case, just make them look like fools. There are reasons perfectly normal folks are fleeing nations related to that violence, and reasons why actual legit journalists get killed ALL THE TIME reporting on these things in certain places.

I think this story is fake as hell for a lot of reasons, and also that posting it as real is a great way to get some unpleasant people very mad at you, even if they too know it is fake as hell. It's a bad idea.
posted by neonrev at 10:40 PM on May 21 [14 favorites]


I'm aware that there exists a real criminal organization by that name, one which hurts real people, but it's hard to sift the kernel of fact from the heap of hyperbole

The horrific acts are not hyperbole, they are very real. They are an effective PR campaign aimed at making sure no one fucks with MS-13. The fiction Trump is spewing is that bum fuck Upstate New York has a three to one MS-13 to “real” American ratio.

And since making MS-13 look like a bunch of clowns negatively impacts the image MS-13 puts so much effort into (with all the death and dismembering and whatnot), it would be on-brand to make an example of this dude, whether or not the story is even true.
posted by sideshow at 10:48 PM on May 21 [12 favorites]


At this point, I file stories about the extreme scariness of MS-13 in the same mental category as stories about SPECTRE, COBRA and the Death Eaters

Oh my sweet summer child...you clearly don’t have any Salvi friends. Or did you think the thousands that are spending their life savings fleeing my motherland to come to the US now, despite the rise of Trumpist fascism, are doing it for funsies?

I’m not joking, this poor fucker is dead. And his friend and sister who he mentioned in the thread are in danger. As he pointed out in a later tweet:
I just talked to a reporter from Southern California, and (paraphrasing) he's like, "Aren't you worried about gang members finding you and killing you?"

Me: "Should I be?"

Him: "YES!"

Me: "Am I just blissfully stupid about all this?"

Him: "Yes. You are."
posted by joedan at 10:52 PM on May 21 [49 favorites]


If this story puts the guy and his family in danger, shouldn‘t we remove the post from Metafilter?
posted by Omnomnom at 11:31 PM on May 21 [8 favorites]


As much as I love my comment, I agree with Omnomnom. What do you think, cortex?
posted by suburbanbeatnik at 11:48 PM on May 21 [2 favorites]


It's not really our job to protect dumbasses who post their dumbassery to the internet.
posted by Justinian at 12:10 AM on May 22 [8 favorites]


That's very lawful neutral of you, Justinian.

(Sometimes I want to grade all Metafilter comments by an alignment chart)
posted by suburbanbeatnik at 12:17 AM on May 22 [14 favorites]


Justinian: "It's not really our job to protect dumbasses who post their dumbassery to the internet."

Even if it's not our job, it could be our hobby.
posted by Bugbread at 12:33 AM on May 22 [18 favorites]


[I'll discuss with other mods in the morning, but since this guy's embryonic screenplay apparently has something like 12 million views on Twitter, and he has no interest at all in taking it down, I don't think Metafilter is going to be the lever that cracks this open for LE or MS-13. If you want to register your reasoning, please go ahead and contact us, but in the meantime, let's drop the metadiscussion here. Thanks!]
posted by taz (staff) at 1:16 AM on May 22 [22 favorites]


All of the comments in the Twitter saying this would make a great movie? This would make a *terrible* movie. Go watch Up In Smoke instead.
posted by Molesome at 2:01 AM on May 22 [6 favorites]


suburbanbeatnik: "but I guess Shane loves to live dangerously."

He is a web developer, after all.
posted by chavenet at 2:04 AM on May 22 [13 favorites]


I will admit that this is about as twitter story as a twitter story gets. Only thing which would have made it a perfect example of the form was if the goal of the road trip was to visit his "Canadian girlfriend".

(Though having an "ex girlfriend" whose place he could just randomly drop by and stay at comes close. I guess when you're such a catch exes just give you keys and kick out whoever they're now seeing if you show up...)
posted by maxwelton at 2:21 AM on May 22 [7 favorites]


WHEN YOU STARE INTO THE VOID, THE VOID BECOMES STUPID

(a) I am a web developer
(b) My AskMe history reveals suspicious activity

HELLO "FRIENDS". I AM NOT THE DUMBASS WEB DEVELOPER YOU'RE LOOKING FOR. I'm a different dumbass web developer.
posted by maxwelton at 2:37 AM on May 22 [15 favorites]


He left out the part where he inadvertently carries the brick of heroin into a public restroom that just happens to be in use by several cops with a drug-sniffing dog.
posted by TedW at 4:43 AM on May 22 [4 favorites]


I'm late to this, but....STORYTIME:

In college in NOVA in the mid 90s. Girlfriend goes to a university about 2 hours away. Find a ride down to GF's with a dude who is also going to my college. We get pulled over on I-81 by VA State Police for speeding. Dude immediately gives up what was just under an 1/8th of weed in his steering wheel column. His car interior was an absolute mess, and the cop gave up searching after about 5 minutes. He gives him a citation for speeding and the weed and sends us on our way.

As we're getting up to speed on the interstate, he turns to me and says "Good thing they didn't find that sheet of acid..."

HOLY SHIT, READER. THAT'S MANDATORY MINIMUM 10 GODDAMN YEARS IN JAIL!

It was hidden in a CD case, of which there were probably hundreds.

But my heart stopped.

Postscript: got to my GF's campus, hung out for the weekend, ended up doing two hits from that sheet he brought down.
posted by kuanes at 4:45 AM on May 22 [3 favorites]


Reasons I don't particularly think this is true.

1) The heroin was hidden in a place that would be checked in a search. At that point you might as well put it in a duffel bag in the car.

2) If this guy was in an organised gang, someone else would have gone to recover the van much earlier. They wouldn't just wait until he came out of prison.

3) The guy calls him and already knows his first name at least. If he spoke to the guy who sold him the van, it's not hard to figure out his name, residential address, everything. That's either public information of something a PI can find for you very easily for any given car. So... the story is this guy rages at him over the phone and then decides to just let it go? Despite it being easy to find him?

Other fun facts: I think the statute of limitations for drug trafficking in Washington is 10 years, not that this is a likely prosecution since he can just claim the whole thing is a work of fiction, but still.

This little gem at the bottom:

Since I'm going viral, and I don't have a SoundCloud to promote: We're in the middle of an opioid crisis. Heroin is an opioid. Please donate to "The Center" -- centeronaddiction.org/donate

Also, fuck the entire Sackler family for being the biggest drug dealers in the world.


Seriously fuck this guy. It's one thing to be amoral and just sell the drugs, but if you do that you don't then get to lecture us about the Sacklers.
posted by atrazine at 4:48 AM on May 22 [18 favorites]


I found a small wrap of heroin hidden in the back of a wardrobe in a rental apartment I lived in once. I was very unsettled, flushed it immediately, and moved a few months later.
posted by Dysk at 5:24 AM on May 22 [2 favorites]


You know I saw this thread title and I thought “not really.” The comments here are far more interesting.
posted by Young Kullervo at 5:53 AM on May 22 [1 favorite]


I was entertained reading that, which is all I expect from Twitter. I assume it's a script he is pitching.
posted by COD at 6:13 AM on May 22 [2 favorites]


If he was born and raised in the U.S., as some of his other stories say, why does he spell it "aluminium"?
posted by dywypi at 6:19 AM on May 22 [3 favorites]


Because Americans are known for their spelling prowess?
posted by LionIndex at 6:31 AM on May 22 [6 favorites]


It's a pretty transparently dumb story. He must have lived a pretty sheltered life (which I don't mean pejoratively) to think he could just, you know, get away with stealing some 10,000 bucks from people who view him as someone that can be killed with no remorse, no ramifications and minimal logistical hassle. But maybe he is that naive. In which case this is the saddest story I've read in a while since the ending (which we will presumably read about, or not, at some point in the future) is horrible and miserable and entirely avoidable if only he had shut the fuck up.
posted by From Bklyn at 6:38 AM on May 22 [5 favorites]


People like this exist. They believe that the world doesn't exist when they don't think about it. Naivety. Some fantastical thinking that protects them from reality.

It took me a while to piece together the parts of this personal story. I had an apartment building in Chicago in the Humboldt Park neighborhood. A dear childhood friend, who lived in Berkeley, asked if I would rent my garden apartment to his daughter and her boyfriend. It was vacant, so, no problem. After a couple of months they had the apartment broken into. Not too uncommon but...less common in recent years. Chalk it up. Two months later, the daughter calls me, crying, at about 7 in the morning. Her boyfriend had been shot. She says that someone carjacked him at 3 AM, but didn't take the car. He had been shot in the face. Luckily, it was only a .22. Luckily it hit is tooth. Luckily, the bullet lodged in his gums. All terrible stuff. But he was alive and scared to death.

They rented a U-Haul and drove back to Berkeley two days later.

I learned from the other tenants that they had been trying trying to move some weed from California. Not wise. Especially not wise in Humboldt Park, where gangs run the game.

I wondered later, what exactly he thought would happen. How he could believe that he could "get away" with selling and not have some kind of altercation. It seems that it was never thought out. That he had never really considered the end at the beginning. He's very lucky to be alive. I don't know that he's any the wiser.

This story reminds me of that incident.
posted by zerobyproxy at 7:05 AM on May 22 [25 favorites]


Sometimes crazy stuff happens in your life that makes for entertaining dinner party conversation but can be potentially disastrous if put on the internet. This sounds like one of those stories. Dude is toast.
posted by grumpybear69 at 7:10 AM on May 22 [3 favorites]


One time when I was really poor and the kids needed to eat I came up with a wise idea to move a few kilos of kind bud to my coworkers cause I knew who was growing it and I knew a great market of very well off young professionals looking for it.

My ex wife and I are exes for a reason but I will always appreciate the day she looked at me squarely in the eyes and said to me “honey I know good drug dealers, some of them are my good friends, you don’t have any of what it takes to be a drug dealer and I promise you I’ll shoot you in your guitar playing hand if you even try. Our kids are not going to have a parent in jail because you’re too dumb to know how run drugs properly”.

So yeah, the marriage was a real disaster but I learned a great life lesson in the process.
posted by nikaspark at 7:44 AM on May 22 [50 favorites]


I honestly enjoyed the growing suspension of disbelief as I went from thinking the author was telling a true story to thinking he was an unreliable narrator to thinking he was just straight up spinning a yarn, but I have to say, the aside about "The Pelican Brief" being a good movie just crashed me out of that suspension entirely.
posted by solotoro at 7:45 AM on May 22 [6 favorites]


I am not a mechanic, but it sure read like he got his carburetor/altitude science wrong. Air intake would run thin, not rich, at higher altitudes and you'd need to open carbs up more as you went up, not closed them down.
posted by arkhangel at 7:55 AM on May 22 [2 favorites]


 a mediocre stupid failson

I didn't know it, but that's the phrase I need for today. Thank you.
posted by scruss at 7:59 AM on May 22 [4 favorites]


Big gaping hole in the plot: Gang guys get access to the car, and drive it away for twenty minutes to check it out. Instead of retrieving their package as soon as they are out of sight, bringing the now worthless van back and blowing the rest of the deal, they continue to go through the motions with the "drugs" still in the car.
posted by each day we work at 8:51 AM on May 22 [20 favorites]


> I am not a mechanic, but it sure read like he got his carburetor/altitude science wrong. Air intake would run thin, not rich, at higher altitudes and you'd need to open carbs up more as you went up, not closed them down.

"Rich" means rich in fuel, not rich in air. And what you adjust on a carburetor is the fuel flow, not the air flow. So you have to reduce the fuel flow to match what you're getting in air flow, which is pretty much fixed.
posted by flug at 9:47 AM on May 22 [2 favorites]


I'm as naive as a new-born baby, and I just kept thinking, "Holeee shit!"
posted by KleenexMakesaVeryGoodHat at 12:47 PM on May 22 [3 favorites]


When I was 16 I had graduated high school and was living on my own after my abusive right-wing nutjob fundie parents had kicked me out of the house for being too angry. Turns out there was way more going on in the family than I knew about at the time, but that's another story.

Since I had to figure out how to live in the world on my own at that age, I tested for the CA High School Proficiency Exam and got my diploma a couple years earlier than most. Test was a joke, basically checked to make sure you could read English, but I digress.

So to support myself, I upped my hours at the Raley's Supermarket on the outskirts of Elk Grove at the time to 40 hours a week so I could afford to pay rent. I also started hanging out with a couple friends from work - one was the Lay's chips delivery guy, Ed, who kind of took me under his arm and taught me all about weed, and eventually the rave scene and certain other drugs prevalent there in the early 90's in NorCal.

Another, however, was this typical half-Mexican half-Caucasian kid named Brandon who had to work at the store to keep things on the level with his parents so they wouldn't ask questions about where he was getting all the money that he put into his pimp-mo-Buick and nice clothes and whatnot. Which was actually from more than just your average run of the mill dealing weed to the high school kids, as it turned out.

How I found out about that though, was when he offered me a ride home after we both worked the closing shift one weeknight. It's 11:30ish and we're cruising up Elk Grove Blvd when the Sheriff's lights flip on behind us. This was before the town incorporated and got itself a full flung PD, so the Sheriffs were generally more chill, but it became clear in the interaction that these dudes knew exactly who Brandon was and what he was up to. It also became clear that this wasn't Brandon's first time interacting with them. I remember both of them looked youngish, and it was a dude that took Brandon's license from the driver's side, and a chick cop that asked me for mine from the passenger side. Being the smart 16 year old I was at the time, I promptly engaged her in an argument over whether or not I was legally required to provide it as I wasn't driving. Brandon interrupted and told me to hand it over to her.

They go back to their car for a few long minutes and Brandon and I don't exchange a word. Then they come back and tell us both to put our hands outside the door windows where they can see them. We both look at each other, I'm white as a sheet and Brandon looks as concerned as I've ever seen him.

That's when both of the cops get this weird smile on their faces and we hear a familiar voice just behind them say "GOTCHA." It was this curly haired blond girl who also worked with us at the grocery store. She was doing a ride-along with them, I think she knew one of the cops somehow. She actually noticed Brandon's car when they pulled up behind us at the traffic light, and she had told them to pull us over and play this prank on us. They had a good laugh and then told us to get home safe.

2 minutes later we're pulling into my driveway and Brandon says "It's a good thing they didn't ask to see in the trunk."

I didn't believe him, so he popped it and sitting right there in his trunk, all alone on the carpeted floor, are two half-shoebox size bricks of bud in plastic wrap.

I never got a ride home with Brandon after that.
posted by allkindsoftime at 12:52 PM on May 22 [23 favorites]


I liked this. I believed about 40% of it. There are some very recognizable dude fantasy narratives in there:

* The Epic Road Trip Full of Friends and Adventure
* The Casual Demonstration of Automotive Repair and Maintenance Mastery
* An Extremely Dangerous Badass Grudgingly Respects Me
* I Have Outwitted an Extremely Dangerous Badass
* Successful Execution of a Brilliant But Morally Defensible Con Job

This would be a great pulp magazine story, if that was still a thing.
posted by prize bull octorok at 2:18 PM on May 22 [31 favorites]


This is a pretty great thread. Should I RTFA now?
posted by rum-soaked space hobo at 2:21 PM on May 22 [7 favorites]


Big gaping hole in the plot: Gang guys get access to the car, and drive it away for twenty minutes to check it out. Instead of retrieving their package as soon as they are out of sight, bringing the now worthless van back and blowing the rest of the deal, they continue to go through the motions with the "drugs" still in the car.

I didn't get that part at all. But a lot of it is hard to tell, because he seems like a guy that makes bad decisions.
posted by bongo_x at 2:57 PM on May 22


he seems like a guy that makes bad decisions.

I think the point being made about them retrieving their package once out of sight is more about how its INCREDIBLY UNLIKELY the dealers wouldn't have just grabbed their package, ditched the van, and ghosted the guy (until they actually opened it and found the book). Yeah, letting them drive off with it would be a bad (good??) decision, but that was the biggest plot hole to me. Not only did the big bad drug dealers actually bring it back, they ended up paying him more for it than originally planned. Just like you'd expect a hardened criminal to do??? It was at that point in the story I knew for certain that I was reading a work of fiction.
posted by allkindsoftime at 4:53 PM on May 22 [3 favorites]


Yes. That's what I was trying to say. That part is very hard to believe, but the rest of it is hard to tell because he seems like a guy that makes bad decisions.
posted by bongo_x at 12:47 AM on May 23


Didn't feel true to me. Then again I can't even figure out how to get my hands on some Adderall.
posted by Mchelly at 6:58 AM on May 23


There's an article titled 'I Lied. I Made The Whole Thing Up. Now I’m In Huge Trouble.' linked at the bottom of the page now.
posted by quercus23 at 12:13 AM on May 24 [10 favorites]


From that article:

The reality of this situation is that I should probably be writing screenplays, rather than coding software.

No, Shane, no you shouldn't.
posted by Dysk at 1:37 AM on May 24 [16 favorites]


The whole followup article is just him patting himself on the back for being so goddamn creative and such a good storyteller (oh, and here's a link to my gofundme to turn this kick ass story into a movie!) dressed up too look, superficially, almost like some kind of apology if you squint. He's all about how he's fucked up his own situation, but doesn't acknowledge that he might've fucked up the situation for a bunch of people round him. Self-serving as fuck.
posted by Dysk at 1:45 AM on May 24 [4 favorites]


Oh God, that followup is the worst. The worst „aw shucks“ white guy non-apology-redemption story. The worst „I’ve done my part recognising I’m an asshole, now I want my cookie and now give me money“ story. And I don‘t believe a single word in it and I‘m sure he‘s had it all planned as a two-parter from the very beginning.

Also this:
You might not understand this yet, but there’s a point you reach in your early 30s, after you get married, when you stop showering for 3–4 days sometimes, and you’re watching yoga videos, and you’re like, “Holy shit. What the hell happened to me? I feel like the least cool person on the planet.”

I believe I speak for most mothers when I say FUCK YOU SHANE, YOU DON‘T DESERVE THE LIFE YOU LIVE.
posted by Omnomnom at 1:58 AM on May 24 [11 favorites]


His followup tweet, where he explains how he met his lawyer when his lawyer tried to pick him up in a gay bar that he didn't realise was a gay bar, is also terrible:

So I look at this dude, and I say, "Wait. Am I in a gay bar?"
Then he looks back at me and he turns to his buddies and he was like, "SEE?! I knew he was too perfect. All the straight ones are too perfect."


And from that article linked above:
The vast majority of films you see aren’t based in reality. They’re elaborate stories told by brilliant liars.

Holy shit man, this is some really important information.
posted by Pink Frost at 2:28 AM on May 24 [5 favorites]


Oh my god.

This is where movies with terrible scripts come from.
posted by bring a tuba to a knife fight at 6:10 AM on May 24 [2 favorites]


In addition to the "apology" which he clearly planned from the beginning and is also full of lies, he's apparently also running a GoFundMe, purportedly to help him go into hiding, so this awful content cycle now has a third step in which you don't even have to rely on engagement and largesse from brands to monetize your stupid, obvious lies, you can just hit up random gullible Internet people.

Also, if I know one thing about this guy based just on this incident, it's that even if this is somehow all true, there is absolutely no way he would voluntarily give up the notoriety of going slightly viral even at the point of certain, painful death, so there is absolutely no chance that any money that goes to him will actually go towards him hiding from anyone, ever.
posted by Copronymus at 9:17 AM on May 24 [6 favorites]


This guy is the Jacob Wohl of Quentin Tarantino wannabes. (So, basically the guy who made Boondock Saints.)
posted by Atom Eyes at 10:22 AM on May 24 [8 favorites]


This is a terrible way to try to become a famous writer. And worst of all, it's going to work.

(The first time I saw it, for a second I thought it was Shane Black, the 90s pulp screenwriter.)
posted by fungible at 10:32 AM on May 24 [1 favorite]


Shane Black doesn’t deserve that. At least not as a writer.
posted by schadenfrau at 10:37 AM on May 24 [3 favorites]


This is where movies with terrible scripts come from.

From the makers of Snakes on a Plane
comes...
Losers in a Van!
posted by Greg_Ace at 10:46 AM on May 24 [3 favorites]


The reality of this situation is that I should probably be writing screenplays, rather than coding software. If you loved the story I just told, and you thought, “Wow, that should be a movie.” — I agree with you. In fact, many agents agreed with you, because my phone hasn’t stopped ringing in three days.

Well, I just rolled my eyes so hard they actually detached from my sockets, slid down my spine, and disappeared into an alternate dimension contained entirely up my own ass. Hollywood agents, you can reach me at -
posted by jurymast at 10:54 AM on May 24 [3 favorites]


Also how in the world should that be a movie? The last thing I thought was oh yeah this would be good onscreen. Is it meant to be a buddy movie? But his friend doesn't really feature and isn't prominent, is it a drug heist? but his character is a scumbag who moved a kilo of heroin and then knowingly tried to scam someone. Who is thinking this should be a movie? WTF
posted by Carillon at 10:59 AM on May 24 [1 favorite]


Starring Vin Diesel, Jason Statham, and Danny Trejo
posted by Greg_Ace at 11:05 AM on May 24 [1 favorite]


With Emily Blunt as "the sister"
posted by Greg_Ace at 11:05 AM on May 24 [1 favorite]


From the "apology":
But this lie has been incredibly stupid, and it comes with a heavy cost. A few hours ago, my weed man came by for his usual delivery. I don’t know how you are with your weed man, but my weed man and I have a good relationship. (Life lesson: Keep a good relationship with your weed man. Tip for delivery.) While he was at my house, I was showing him the thread, the whole story, and how I went viral. When I got to the very end, he said, “Wait. Hol’ up. Hol’ the fuck up. Did you actually just casually throw out how you robbed MS-13? Bro, that is the fucking whitest shit I have ever heard in my entire life. Like, bro, you know me. I used to bang. I know these n****as. These n****as ain’t just gonna murder you. They’re gonna make that shit last for six fucking hours. Bro. I don’t even know if I can be at this fucking house right now.”

The narrator voice went off in my head: “At moment, I realized I had fucked up.”

Peak Whiteness is having every poc on Twitter telling you that you're doing some dumbshit, but only believing it when it comes from your weed dealer.
posted by joedan at 11:12 AM on May 24 [8 favorites]


he is still writing fiction
posted by prize bull octorok at 11:16 AM on May 24 [15 favorites]


Peak Whiteness is having every poc on Twitter telling you that you're doing some dumbshit, but only believing it when it comes from your weed dealer.

I would counter that somewhere above the peak is having every POC on Twitter bag on the stupid "cholo" dialogue in your original story and then thinking you can pivot to a flawless AAVE in the next chapter.
posted by Etrigan at 11:37 AM on May 24 [28 favorites]


The narrator voice went off in my head: “At moment, I realized I had fucked up.”

Classic professional-level writing
posted by Greg Nog at 12:42 PM on May 24 [10 favorites]


I was relieved to see that the GoFundMe has raised $140 of a $20,000 goal. This guy seems to think people cared about his twitter story about van ownership a lot more than anybody actually did.
posted by zachlipton at 1:00 PM on May 24 [2 favorites]


I have decided that my favorite thing about this is how he's now trying to guilt people into giving him money by talking about the extreme stress this has put him under and how powerfully he's in fear for his own life, but he still has the initial thread as his pinned tweet.
posted by Copronymus at 1:45 PM on May 24 [8 favorites]


Sometimes I feel bad seeing people get dogpiled for doing dumb shit online, but I don't think this is going to be one of those times.
posted by atoxyl at 2:09 PM on May 24 [5 favorites]


That apology is amazing. This guy could run for office as a Republican.
posted by bongo_x at 2:39 PM on May 24 [2 favorites]


To be fair, there is one bit of truth in his apology:

World's Greatest Dad is a great movie and you should see it.
posted by Rev. Syung Myung Me at 2:49 PM on May 24


I keep thinking about how every effort of his to make this viral also makes him an increasingly useful PR tool. Make a joke on twitter about ripping us off? Even if you apologize, you are dead.
posted by neonrev at 2:50 PM on May 24 [4 favorites]


What a ding-dong.
posted by jenfullmoon at 2:51 PM on May 24




Guys! I also need to go into hiding!* Please send me your moneys.

* I don't like this reality and would like to hide from it.
posted by maxwelton at 3:36 PM on May 24 [3 favorites]


I knew this story wasn't true when I saw the headline. However according to Madison Malone Kircher, this guy was also instrumental is revving up the controversy about Old Town Road and the Billboard Country charts. And that story I believed as soon as I saw it and have even spent some time thinking about it since. Shame on me.
posted by great_radio at 4:48 PM on May 24 [3 favorites]


Guys! I also need to go into hiding!* Please send me your moneys.

What sort of funding is required to build a pillow fort?
posted by Greg_Ace at 4:56 PM on May 24


Jeez, this guy's fifteen minutes aren't up yet? When I was reading this thread the other day, I was really baffled about how people thought the "he's in real trouble now" scenario was supposed to work. Like, do people really believe MS-13 has members assigned to sift through social media to make sure the gang is represented fairly?

"Hey, there's a web developer on Twitter maligning the competence of our organization!"
"We must fuck him up. Send the Social Engagement Team."
posted by neroli at 5:57 PM on May 24 [2 favorites]


Do people really believe that something can go viral specifically because of its inclusion of MS-13 and they literally will not notice?

Like, it's 2019, they do also have phones and stuff. It's not like they would require a dude on a 9-5 to notice this one, nor would they need to organize anything. Some local affiliated hopeful with a gun and awareness of twitter is all it takes.

Like, when I imagine what happens to him actually, it's more '17 year old with a gun outside his place of work when he walks to his car' and less what they would actually do at worst, but there's also the worst to consider. I trust the people closer to that kind of life than me when they say the worst is fucking horrible.
posted by neonrev at 6:16 PM on May 24 [3 favorites]


I trust the people closer to that kind of life than me when they say the worst is fucking horrible.

The worst thing I have seen on the Internet was a video of a cartel killing.....I'll spare the details. It was indeed fucking horrible.
posted by thelonius at 6:28 PM on May 24


From the makers of Snakes on a Plane comes... Losers in a Van!

Oh no, wait, they've already done Dumb and Dumber, haven't they? Son of a.... Ehhh, we'll call it a "re-imagining", then.

With blackjack! And hookers! In fact, forget the movie!
posted by Greg_Ace at 11:25 PM on May 24 [1 favorite]


If you need reasons to not fund him, whoa, he seems like quite a shithead.
posted by Pronoiac at 9:13 AM on May 25 [6 favorites]


If you need reasons to not fund him, whoa, he seems like quite a shithead.

That's good to know but why.....would I fund him? Even if he was a nice person. There are lots and lots of worthy places for my donation budget rather than random "viral" drama llamas.
posted by thelonius at 10:08 AM on May 25 [1 favorite]


And his Twitter profile is no longer active.
posted by the thorn bushes have roses at 11:35 AM on May 25 [5 favorites]


joedan: "Peak Whiteness is having every poc on Twitter telling you that you're doing some dumbshit, but only believing it when it comes from your weed dealer."

I don't get how people are pivoting from "the first story was false, but the followup, where he learns about the gravity of the situation from his weed dealer, is totally true."

I don't think he had this planned out from the start, but he recognized an opportunity. He wrote a fictional story based in reality (the van trip), adding dramatic elements of hidden heroin and gang members. It blew up. He realized he could spin it out further, so he wrote a followup fictional story based in reality (being informed that his last story was a bad idea), adding dramatic elements of weed dealers saying "If you don’t get the fuck outta this house, right now, I’m gonna kill you myself, so at least I know you died a painless death."
posted by Bugbread at 4:46 PM on May 26 [7 favorites]


And his Twitter profile is no longer active.

His GoFundMe has gone too.
posted by Busy Old Fool at 3:09 AM on May 27 [2 favorites]


His GoFundMe has gone too.

His screenwriting career has gone to live with a new family, on a big farm, where it will be very happy.
posted by thelonius at 6:26 AM on May 27 [7 favorites]


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