Christopher Miner


I was living in Mississippi and needed to find ten 27-inch tube TVs for a show in New York but only had one day to set everything up after my scheduled arrival in town two days before the opening. All the rental places I called only had flatscreen TVs, so I got on Craigslist about a week before the show and found ten 27-inch tube TVs for sale in New York, but they were spread out all around the city—two for sale in Brooklyn, three in Queens, two in Harlem, one in Nyack, one on Roosevelt Island, and one on Staten Island. I asked the first guy I called if I could buy his TV but told him I couldn't pick it up or pay him cash for another seven days when I got to town. He said, "I'm not going to just hold it for you. What if you never show up?" So, I asked him, "What if I paid you the money now over PayPal. Will you answer your phone when I call you in a week to pick up the TV?" He agreed. And so did the other nine people. I paid them all, in full, over PayPal in advance with no guarantee that they would answer the phone when I got to New York the day before the opening. But they did—all of them. I rented the van at 8am and unloaded all ten TVs in the gallery before 5 o'clock. Everyone pretty much said the same thing when I called to tell them I was on my way to pick up their TV...that it was ridiculous to trust a total stranger in New York to keep their word.