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Comedy Scams Swindles Schemes Web Series

Art scams: invisible sculptures and blank canvases—Scams, Swindles, and Schemes

Devin takes the wheel this episode to talk about two stories that have been bothering him for some time. Are these art scams really scams? Or schemes to take money from people with too much in the first place? $18,000 is about how much Devin has left to pay for the college degree he earned twenty years ago, but some people spend that much on “invisible sculptures” in Italy.

Onicia talks him off the ledge for the next story about a Danish artist who literally called his show “Take the Money and Run.” A lot has happened since this story was trending last year, but we’re still not sure how to categorize it.

You can reach out to us on Twitter, donate to the scampaign, subscribe to Devin’s and Onicia’s YouTube channels–and tell us what kind of art you’d buy if you had the money.

Invisible sculptures bought with real money

An artist in Italy managed to sell empty space for $18,000, but with a certificate “proving” it exists. Onicia and Devin wonder if they can photoshop one of those certificates to pretend to have one of these sculptures and then sell that.

Question: What would you make a sculpture of if you wanted to sell it?

Shout at @devinagonistes and @OniciaMuller on Twitter.

Blank canvases may not be an art scam

“Take the Money and Run” was an art show in Denmark, but at least that had some tangible results! Devin understands that art is hard, and Onicia has plenty of sympathy, too.

Question: What’s your favorite work of art?

Shout at @devinagonistes and @OniciaMuller on Twitter.

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Comedy Scams Swindles Schemes Web Series

Comedian Janíce V. Rodriguez on microdosing drugs and multivitamins—Scams, Swindles, and Schemes

Comedian and producer Janíce V. Rodriguez joins Onicia this week to discuss how microdosing is a swindle but with two different case studies with very different outcomes. Devin shares his thoughts, too, about how drugs were only made illegal because the government wanted to police communities of color. And hippies.

Pivoting to a different kind of drug that actually has fewer benefits than the fun kind, Onicia and Devin talk about multivitamins. They’re poorly regulated and not nearly as good for you as we’ve been led to believe all these years. But it’s a huge industry and people spend way too much money on them.

You can reach out to us on Twitter, donate to the scampaign, subscribe to Devin’s and Onicia’s YouTube channels–and tell us what drugs you think should be legal.

Multivitamins won’t make you healthier

Onicia revisits her old nemesis: MLM’s! Turns out multivitamins aren’t just unregulated and bad for you, they’re also used in pyramid schemes to trick you into thinking they’ll make you healthier. Then you end up with a bunch of multivitamins to sell. Devin tries not to yell too much about how all you need is a balanced diet. Eat more leafy greens!

Question: Have you ever taken multivitamins that weren’t prescribed by a doctor?

Shout at @devinagonistes and @OniciaMuller on Twitter.

Welcome special guest Janíce V. Rodriguez!

Janice Rodriguez - chicago comedian - las locas

Comedian and writer Janíce V. Rodriguez is the co-producer of Las Locas Comedy and the president of Adelante Live. She can be found on Twitter and Instagram at @jvrspeaks. Her name rhymes with Denise.

Microdosing drugs only “legal” for white people 

Janíce V. Rodriguez talks with Onicia about two very different people who shared in very public ways about doing drugs, only one of whom knew what he was talking about. When Black and brown people do drugs, it’s “crime”; when white people do drugs, it’s “liberating and creative.” Carl Hart gets a plug (he’s the guy who knew what he was talking about), and everybody has a friendly time.

Question: Do you think drugs should be legalized or decriminalized?

Shout at @devinagonistes and @OniciaMuller on Twitter.

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Comedy Scams Swindles Schemes Web Series

Joyce Hagen-McIntosh defends libraries + Squibler writing app review —Scams, Swindles, and Schemes

Podcaster, librarian, and consultant Joyce Hagen-McIntosh joins Onicia and Devin this week because she and Devin have a lot in common and all three of them love books. They were so appalled at the idea of privatizing libraries that it threatened to take over the episode, but they managed to pull it back, play a game, and have a fun time as always.

Squibler is a writing app where if you stop typing for more than five seconds, everything you’ve written disappears. This seems less like a writing exercise and more of a way for criminals to get stuff off their chest without confessing to the police. It advertises itself as the Most Dangerous Writing App, and we believe it based on the anxiety it causes.

You can reach out to us on Twitter, donate to our sleazy lawyer fund, subscribe to Devin’s and Onicia’s YouTube channels–and tell us your favorite part about going to the library.

Squibler writing app gives Devin a panic attack

Onicia made the mistake of going on Twitter again, where this time she discovered someone talking about Squibler. It’s a writing app that generates a prompt or allows you to start free writing, but if you stop for more than five seconds everything you’ve written is erased. Just the idea of that made Devin start to sweat and check his pulse. It’s taken him ten minutes just to write this paragraph!

Question: Would you use Squibler?

Shout at @devinagonistes and @OniciaMuller on Twitter.

Welcome special guest Joyce Hagen-McIntosh!

Joyce Hagen-McIntosh

Comedian, mom, librarian, and lover of life Joyce Hagen-McIntosh can talk to anyone about anything. She is the host of the podcast Books, Bible, Beer, and Queer, and can be found on Twitter at @jmclibrarian and on Instagram at @joycestandup.

Comedian Joyce Hagen-McIntosh: Public Libraries are NOT a scam

Joyce Hagen-McIntosh discusses a Forbes op-ed that was recent at the time of recording that suggested libraries should be privatized and run by corporations like Amazon. This is such a terrible idea in so many ways, Joyce and Devin almost forgot to rank the story a scam, swindle, or scheme! Finally, Joyce pitches her scam as a romance novelist and everybody plays a new game.  

Question: What’s your favorite romance novel and did you find it at the library?

Shout at @devinagonistes and @OniciaMuller on Twitter.

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Comedy Scams Swindles Schemes Web Series

Personnel Concepts scamming new LLCs? Klaviyo review—Scams, Swindles, and Schemes

Onicia and Devin are by themselves this week to puzzle over two different business ideas that look like they’re supposed to help but at what cost? In Personnel Concepts’ case, ten dollars! But that $10 is the result of being scared into thinking they’re the government when they’re just an ordinary business trying to sell posters and lecturing unsuspecting people about labor laws.

Our listeners who are stuck being office drones for eight hours a day might be familiar with Klaviyo. It’s one of a hundred similar marketing or project management software designed to make our lives easier, and we all know that the internet is free because it’s mining our data. Klaviyo takes it a step further by mining your data and the data of your friends and family!

You can reach out to us on Twitter, donate to our sleazy lawyer fund, subscribe to Devin’s and Onicia’s YouTube channels–and tell us what you would do if you got anything in the mail from Personnel Concepts.

Is Personnel Concepts legit?

There’s a company out there preying on small business owners, making them think they have to send in $10 for a poster otherwise they’re in violation of labor laws. Devin and Onicia are surprised that this blatant posing as the government isn’t illegal in some way. Some people might spend more than that for a poster at a music festival, but at least they aren’t tricked into buying it because they think their business requires it!

Question: How much would you spend on a poster?

Shout at @devinagonistes and @OniciaMuller on Twitter.

More data thieves?! Klaviyo is sneaky

Everybody needs help organizing stuff. Even Onicia uses mailchimp to keep all our subscribers updated on the latest Scams news. But Klaviyo takes it a step further by pulling your name and email address just from you visiting a website. Doesn’t matter what your permission settings are or how you feel about getting updates from some random site you visited once. Onicia shares her strategy for using multiple accounts and incognito browsers, which used to sound like overkill to Devin but now he’s not so sure.

Question: What steps do you take to protect your data?

Shout at @devinagonistes and @OniciaMuller on Twitter.

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Comedy Scams Swindles Schemes Web Series

Comedian Angie McMahon on the dark side of tipping culture—Scams, Swindles, and Schemes

Onicia and Devin are joined by comedian Angie McMahon this week to discuss all kinds of food scams, like cooking, restaurant culture, and tipping. Angie knows what it’s like to work in service, and Devin has worked in too many restaurants, so they had plenty to commiserate about! From drunk customers to cheap customers, they cover all the bases.

But this episode is more than just complaining about old jobs and continuing to foment the ongoing work revolution! Devin attacks restaurants themselves as a scam, since they’re the only business you can open with zero qualifications, and Onicia calls out the trending idea that cooking is a scam when takeout and delivery cost so much and are being taken over by apps run by greedy tech bros.

You can reach out to us on Twitter, donate to our scampaign, subscribe to Devin’s and Onicia’s YouTube channels–and tell us how much you tip when you go out so we can shame you if it’s too low.

Shout at @devinagonistes and @OniciaMuller on Twitter.

Welcome special guest Angie McMahon!

Chicago Comedian Angie McMahon wisecrackin

Angie McMahon is the executive producer and host of Wisecrackin Comedy. She is the founder of the CIC Theater and Under The Gun Theater, is a faculty member at Second City, and has produced storefront theater in Chicago for 20 years.

Tipping is a scam that restaurants force us to buy into

And if cooking is a scheme, that doesn’t leave much room for the alternative! From delivery apps to unqualified restaurant managers and owners, there’s no shortage of scammers trying to convince you not to cook. But their biggest scam is how they get away with not paying their workers and put that burden on us! Angie plays a new game called “Tip or No Tip?” to answer once and for all who we’re supposed to tip. It’s the return of the biggest villain on this show: math!

Question: What jobs do you think deserve tips instead of a living wage?

Shout at @devinagonistes and @OniciaMuller on Twitter.

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Comedy Scams Swindles Schemes Web Series

Daniel Rosehill on annual rent increases and landlords picking your roommates—Scams, Swindles, and Schemes

More scams! More guests! Onicia was scrolling through apartment listings recently at the time of recording, and Devin has lived in way too many apartments over a short period of time. Thankfully, that’s all behind them, but they have a few questions! In addition to their highly misinformed opinions, you’ll also get to hear the respected opinions of Daniel Rosehill.

The pandemic revealed a lot of systemic failures about housing in America, but has anything been solved? If that sounds deeper than Devin and Onicia usually get on this show, that’s because it is. They wonder briefly if the subjects are too depressing this week, but keep it light by talking about the worst roommates they’ve ever had.

You can reach out to us on Twitter, donate to our sleazy lawyer fund, subscribe to Devin’s and Onicia’s YouTube channels–and tell us how you plan to get ahead in your career.

Raising the rent for maintenance that never happens

Onicia and Devin talk about how every landlord seems to think that everybody gets a big raise every year. Why else would they think that rent should just keep going up every year? Doesn’t matter how small it is, what is it actually paying for? And that’s before they start in on the landlords who get old tenants out so they can charge new, unsuspecting tenants hundreds of dollars more!

Question: What was the worst rent increase you’ve suffered?

Shout at @devinagonistes and @OniciaMuller on Twitter.

Welcome special guest Daniel Rosehill!

Daniel Rosehill - Freelance writer in Israel - technology, marketing communication

Writer Daniel Rosehill posts about Israel, technology, and marketing communications, and you can read his work on Medium here and watch his YouTube channel here.

$1300 for one room and no say in your roommate(s)

Onicia found a listing on Zillow that looked like it was a great deal: $1300 for a 3-bedroom apartment! Turns out, that was $1300 for one bedroom in the 3-bedroom apartment, and the landlord would be the one to pick who goes into the other two. This turns into an exchange of roommate horror stories, because if we can’t trust ourselves to find a good roommate why would we trust the guy overcharging for a single room?

Question: What’s the nicest thing a roommate has ever done for you?

Shout at @devinagonistes and @OniciaMuller on Twitter.

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Comedy Scams Swindles Schemes Web Series

Lace front wigs are still sus and you need body lotion—Scams, Swindles, and Schemes

We’re back! Scams, Swindles, and Schemes season 2 has officially begun! And we’re picking back up right where we left off, with topics that are definitely not a trap for Devin. Especially since he is a veteran lotion user and has plenty of advice for those looking to buy one that’s right for them!

But that’s not all, Onicia invites him to take a second, longer look at weaves after a brief explanation of the different kinds of “fake hair” one might encounter. And Devin shares how he first learned about all this in a mall food court while babysitting.

Shout at us on Twitter using #scamsss, donate to our sleazy lawyer fund, subscribe to Devin’s and Onicia’s YouTube channels.

WATCH THE FULL EPISODE

Give us money to see our ashy skin and cracked lips

Devin and Onicia discuss the different lotions they’ve used and why, and Onicia shares her misadventures with the worst body lotion out there (you can google it, this brand is that infamous). Also, Onicia details a good alternative to expensive lotions that won’t break the bank, provides a final take on Kevin Durant’s legs, and we start a new fundraising effort!

Question: Tweet us (@devinagonistes and @OniciaMuller) to tell us your go-to brand of lotion! Do you use different lotions for different areas?

Talking about weaves is only a trap if you make it one

Season 1 ended with a close (maybe too close) look at a particular weave to determine if it was a scam, swindle, or scheme, and now Devin and Onicia are zooming out to look at extensions and wigs! It’s not as fraught a conversation this time, and it turns out Devin has a history with this subject that predates his time in Chicago.

Question: Tweet us (@devinagonistes and @OniciaMuller) to tell us your favorite weave stories!

We’ll always be real with you!

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Comedy Scams Swindles Schemes Web Series

Suvie: Your Countertop Kitchen Robot—Scams, Swindles, and Schemes

Onicia got an ad for Suvie,  a countertop kitchen robot. It’s a 2 – part system. The Veggie and meat maker is $399 and the pasta/coffee maker is $399. BIG BOOTY BUTTCHEEKS–there’s a catch– you can only get that price if you buy into the meal subscription service.

You can find us on Twitter (we’d love to hear from you!), donate to our sleazy lawyer fund, subscribe to Devin’s and Onicia’s YouTube channels–and subscribe to our super nutritional mailing list.

Tweet us (@devinagonistes and @OniciaMuller) and let us know if you’re ready to make Suvie your grocer, chef, and device landlord or if you rate them a scam, SKINDLE, or scheme. Like. Comment. Share. Subscribe.

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Comedy Scams Swindles Schemes Web Series

$299 for 5 Minutes to Practice a Pitch?! And No Deal—Scams, Swindles, and Schemes

This episode’s scam begins like so many others: with a mass email sent to the Promotions folder! Devin made the mistake of signing up for a “free” pitch meeting with a rando executive, but he forgot to read the fine print that stated he had to pay three hundred dollars if he wanted to actually pitch something in order to get lukewarm feedback. Full season 2 starts in April!

You can find us on Twitter (we’d love to hear from you!), donate to our sleazy lawyer fund, subscribe to Devin’s and Onicia’s YouTube channels–and pay us a lot of money to listen to your ideas so that we can compliment your “energy.”

Pitch Meeting Scam

Devin tells a story about how he ended up in a Zoom call with too many people sharing movie and tv show ideas, some of which are bad enough that they’ll probably end up produced soon enough. At least he didn’t stay for the whole thing!

Question: Tweet us (@devinagonistes and @OniciaMuller) to tell us: would you spend this kind of money for five minutes of pitching and two minutes of feedback?

We’re better than studio executives because we’re honest.

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News

Reminder: Don’t eat from everyone’s kitchen 😩

Happy Holidays, friends!

Friendly reminder: this season (and every season, TBH) we will not eat from everyone’s kitchen. Some of y’all be seasoning y’alls pans with cat butt juice and then acting offended when we choose to dine elsewhere.

AITA for letting my cat sit in the roasting pan?

Comic Books Are a Scam! (But Not Really)—Scams, Swindles, and Schemes

Las chancalas are coming for dat 4$$

Angelica (panchopiggytron) has another hilarious clip about Mexican culture (click on image or this link to watch)

Sign up for my newsletter for the super-secret 50% off code.

As always, special thanks to erica dreisbach the good web develper, Shawn York for dope video editing and graphics, and Elizabeth McQuern for dope headshots.