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Sep 15th, 2006, 02:32 PM
  #21  
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 19,000
My point (which I admit I should have specified) was that your risky behavior is not a predictor of future success.

"I've been to Europe nn times and never been pickpocketed."

Youth murdered on first trip to Europe
Robespierre is offline  
Sep 15th, 2006, 03:16 PM
  #22  
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
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My [French] bank, La Banque Postale, has a "mouse keyboard" for typing the password. It's also vulnerable, anyway. But there's not much to see on the account page, only my balance. It's not possible to wire money from the Internet interface to anybody else than ... myself.
superheterodyne is offline  
Sep 15th, 2006, 04:30 PM
  #23  
 
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Well Neo, we know you travel under a shinning star!!!!! LOL And lucky me...I must also. Just take my purse, keep everything in it, don't lock my suitcase, leave it open in the hotel room and yadda yadda. And, I also realize that there is always a first time and no guarantees. I just can't travel looking over my shoulder all the time. If the hotel staff want whats in my suitcase and it's locked, they can just roll it out of the room, or cut it to get into it. I know someone could cut my purse strap and snatch it...I'm careful about how I hold it, do not leave it unattended for a moment..and do what I can to be careful. I just can't obsess about these things, I have too many OTHER things to obsess about!!! And yes, I log out when visiting the bank on the computer. Haven't had to access anything while being over seas..yet.
crefloors is offline  
Sep 15th, 2006, 04:42 PM
  #24  
 
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Confession time..Neo will cringe I am sure. I am usually soooo careful.

OK, I am sitting at the outside table at the MonaLisa on Columbus in SF. I am waiting for NeilOfOz and his wife to join me as we had planned this lunch way in advance. I got to the MonaLisa early and they brought me a glass of wine and I had a cigarette at the outside table. One of the waiters motioned for me to come inside for a moment. So I did..gosh when a cute young waiter Italian wants your attention..I mean are you going to say NO? So I went inside, we had a bit of a conversation. Than I went back outside to my table. OMG, along with my glass of wine and my cigarette in the ashtray was my purse!!! And tons of people (locals and tourist from all over) walk by the restaurant constantly. I guess in that at least one of the cute Italian fellows is always outside the restaurant that kept anyone from grabbing my purse..but geez..how relaxed and stupid could I get,lol. I immediatly thought of Fodor's and how we all caution each other to guard our purses etc. I sure flunked the test that day.
LoveItaly is offline  
Sep 15th, 2006, 05:16 PM
  #25  
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
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I've been to Europe nn times and never been pickpocketed.

Youth murdered on first trip to Europe

I've been driving every day of my life since I was 16.

Youth killed in car accident on first day of driving.

Millions of people travel on small commuter airlines every year without incident.

Newly-weds on first day of honeymoon
killed in crash of small plane.


I'm sorry, but I don't see what examples of either type prove.
We all take smaller or larger risks every day that we get out of bed. Or maybe even if we stay in bed:

"In the UK around 4,000 people die in accidents at home every year, more than the number of people killed on the roads or at work, according to the Royal Society for Prevention of Accidents."
Julienas is offline  
Sep 15th, 2006, 06:14 PM
  #26  
 
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"I'm sorry, but I don't see what examples of either type prove."

They illustrate The Gambler's Fallacy: past events do not predict future outcomes. So although Neo has been[list of stupid things] for years, that doesn't guarantee that something terrible won't happen tomorrow.

But more important, when you engage in risky behavior, your chances of having a problem statistically increase. Like smoking. Or not wearing seat belts.
Robespierre is offline  
Sep 15th, 2006, 07:09 PM
  #27  
 
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And playing life safe and being ultra conservative does not guarantee anything either. A long time friend of my daughter (from 4th grade) never drank, smoked or travelled and never was active regarding any sports, dangerous or otherwise. She just died this week.
LoveItaly is offline  
Sep 15th, 2006, 07:50 PM
  #28  
 
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There are no guarantees, only tendencies. Since you're a smoker, I can see how you might rationalize your choice with that sort of anecdote.

But there are statistics, my dear. And your chances of dying of a smoking-related disease are ten times greater than those of someone who never smoked.

Remember this when you sit across from that doctor and she tells you the cancer has metastasized and she's sorry but there isn't much they can do.
Robespierre is offline  
Sep 15th, 2006, 08:11 PM
  #29  
Neopolitan
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It's interesting that my list is considered "stupid" to some. But frankly I don't think it's stupid to travel comfortably for five months without an uncomfortable money belt around my waist under my clothes in hot and humid weather on the very slight chance that I might be pickpocketed. Nor do I think it is stupid that I don't go through 12 steps of super compulsive behaviour to make sure than no one has any possible way of getting my personal information. Nor do I think it is stupid to drink the tap water in Paris or Rome. Do these things put me at higher risk? Of course they do. (Although oddly enough after years of such careless behaviour I have never had a case of identity theft, yet my partner who has never posted or used a credit card number or bank information on the web has had two such cases). But isn't life a risk? And what percentage chance do I really have that I'm going to get sick from that tap water? Or that somebody is lurking at that internet cafe waiting to steal my bank information?

The bottom line? Live 60 years working and worrying 24 hours a day to prevent any possible breach of safety -- or to just go about life having fun and worry about a problem if or when it comes along. Some would disagree with me -- Robespierre obviously does. But I choose the latter.

How many people use the internet every day to access personal information? What percent of them end up with identity theft problems? Meanwhile how many people end up with identity theft problems who don't even use the internet at all? Actually I don't care what the answers are -- others might.
 
Sep 15th, 2006, 08:17 PM
  #30  
 
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"Do these things put me at higher risk? Of course they do."

That's not stupid? I stand corrected.
Robespierre is offline  
Sep 15th, 2006, 08:23 PM
  #31  
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Robespierre, you are clearly an intelligent person. Why did you make that last remark which frankly seems to contradict that?

Does getting in a car to drive to the supermarket put me at a higher risk than locking myself in my house? Of course it does. Therefore I'm stupid to go to the supermarket?
Is it stupid to get on a plane to fly to some destination? I guess so, since it certainly is a risk. Should I get out of bed in the morning? Certainly I will be at greater risk of accidents than if I just pull the covers over my head and stay there all day, so it is stupid to get up?

Robespierre, life is a risk. Sometimes comfort or convenience is worth a very slight risk to me. I don't mind that you think it is stupid. I just disagree with you. I will not spend my life being controlled by fear and worry. Sorry, just the way it is. Stupid to you -- life-giving to me.

Frankly I'm not sure why you take the risk to post here. Surely someone with a lot of computer savvy could track you down and make your life miserable. Isn't that a stupid risk to take?
 
Sep 16th, 2006, 03:14 AM
  #32  
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Posts: 4,609
i agree, neo. it's astonishing the number of people here who post enough information for someone to easily find out their name and address.... along with ongoing posts with details of their lifestyle, whereabouts, children, posessions, indications of wealth (or poverty), emotional state, etc, etc. just perfect to feed a scam artist or nutcase.

some people choose to put their lives on the internet but i think a lot of people don't realise what they are doing and how easy it would be for someone to exploit this.

talking about travelling at fodor's can be more dangerous than actually travelling.
walkinaround is offline  
Sep 16th, 2006, 05:14 AM
  #33  
 
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I've decided to stay in bed and pull the covers over my head.
Robespierre is offline  
Sep 16th, 2006, 05:29 AM
  #34  
 
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I can't imagine anything more stupid than wandering around some beautiful city or scenic wonder calculating actuarial tables in my head. What a waste of a perfectly good life.

Good on you Neo for enjoying all the opportunities presented to you, and even making your own. I envy that list and look forward to doing my own stupid things. At the end of things, I'd rather turn to my partner and reminisce about that bungee jump than to look fondly back at having my nose in a gps unit as I wandered around a city like Paris. "Ah, remember when it beeped and I suddenly was prevented making a right turn down the wrong street?" "Yes dear, a tragedy narrowly averted that day! Now, gum your porridge before it gets cold..."

Clifton is offline  
Sep 16th, 2006, 06:05 AM
  #35  
 
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I have done most of the things on Neopolitan's list with the same (non) results. (I confess that I have not bungee jumped, however.) And I certainly agree that I prefer to take a few extra risks in exchange for large amounts of extra freedom. I have tried and abandoned some safety techniques often mentioned here -- money belts are sweaty and inconvenient, and if I carry my passport on me, I spend more time worrying about it than if it is lying on a table in my hotel room. And I have also left my passport at the hotel reception for up to a week before reclaiming it, in Asia, usually in a shoebox on the counter.

However, I must admit that I am also an unlucky person.
-- I was mugged in a perfectly safe part of Paris and spent 10 days in the hospital with a smashed face that had to be put back together.
-- I was mugged in South Africa due to my own stupidity. Did not follow the guidebook order: don't try to walk even 50 meters in Johannesburg.
-- I lost one of my passports in Australia and retain a vague memory of having thought "don't put your passport there or you're going to lose it."
-- I had both passports and all of my baggage and purchases stolen on a chic street of Beverly Hills because I was (certainly) observed locking everything carefully in the trunk of my rental car before going on a 30-minute errand. It wasn't until hours later that I saw that a hole had been punched where the lock used to be on the trunk.

So I don't have a grudge about any part of the world when it comes to safety. I am unlucky everywhere.

The three countries of the world where I have felt the safest at all times: Cuba, Mauritius and Singapore.
kerouac is online now  
Sep 16th, 2006, 06:39 AM
  #36  
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Ouch, Kerouc. Remind me not to choose you as a traveling partner! That's a horrible record.

But let's be honest here. There's a difference between taking a caculated risk and being "stupid" as it was called above. Leaving luggage in a car trunk may always be a "risk", but standing in clear view rummaging through it before locking it and walking away is simply -- well, what else can we call it? -- stupid -- sorry!
 
Sep 16th, 2006, 06:57 AM
  #37  
 
Join Date: Jun 2003
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Yes, of course, but: "Beverly Hills" ! When you think of what places frighten a lot of people on this board, BH is not one of them.
kerouac is online now  
Sep 16th, 2006, 07:04 AM
  #38  
 
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"I can't imagine anything more stupid than wandering around some beautiful city or scenic wonder calculating actuarial tables in my head. What a waste of a perfectly good life." Calculating actuarial tables? Really? Who the hell does that?

And walking around staring at a GPS? I use mine like a map: find out where I am, and which way to go to get where I want to be. Some people seem to think that geeks exercise only the left hemisphere of their brains. The people who feel this way (in my experience) tend to have over-developed right brains.

For the record: I am a pilot. Some people think that getting into a light airplane at all is stupidity tantamount to suicide. But I hedge my bet by never flying impaired, never challenging the weather, and always filing a flight plan. I also fly aerobatics - but never without a parachute.

I think what it boils down to is where each person sets the threshold on the risk/benefit ratio of a given undertaking. Neo prefaced his post with "Things I've done traveling that are a bigger risk than using public computersquot; and then listed a number of things that are well below my threshold and, I imagine, below that of most people.
Robespierre is offline  
Sep 16th, 2006, 07:06 AM
  #39  
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OK, I get it. You're right.

But I live in quiet, refined,upscale Naples, Florida. Who would expect crime here? But the number of times cars are broken into along the beach is unbelieveable. But guess what. No one ever breaks into an empty trunk. They only break into those trunks where they have watched someone carefully "hide" their good stuff and then walk away. No point in breaking into a trunk to see if there might be something there. Wait until you see someone put their good stuff there for safe keeping, then you know your efforts will be well rewarded.
 
Sep 16th, 2006, 06:12 PM
  #40  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 16,067
Really?

Uh, no. lol

ps - flying aerobatics must be an incredible experience. I never could swing the costs of getting beyond ground school and basic vfr many years ago, but even that was great. Hats off to you for that.
Clifton is offline  

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