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Man buys iPad for $390, gets box of potatoes

In the latest, and perhaps most daring, scam perpetrated in a public place, a man hands over 250 British pounds (around $390) for what he thinks is an iPad and gets the raw material for french fries.

These aren't the potatoes in question. But, would potatoes really fool you?
Jonathan Wallace/YouTube Screenshot by Chris Matyszczyk/CNET

If a man in the street offers to sell you a Rolex, it is likely a worthless piece of metal.

Similarly, if a man in the street offers to sell you an iPad, it is unlikely to be anything other than a piece of wood or a box of apples.

Or, in this case, potatoes.

Britain's Manchester Evening News reports that yet another variation on the unopened-iPad-box-that-turns-out-not -to-contain-an-iPad scam occurred in the very center of Manchester.

Earlier this week, a man was approached by two obviously persuasive gentlemen at the city's Piccadilly rail station.

They offered to sell him an iPad for 250 British pounds (around $390). They wanted to meet him in a parking lot to complete the transaction.

You might wonder that, already, there were enough facts to make the purchaser believe that he was soon to be fleeced.

It seems not. Instead, the man duly met them in the parking lot, parted with cash, and, on opening the box, realized he'd just overpaid handsomely for the raw material for french fries.

The box contained potatoes. Yes, enough potatoes to be as heavy as an iPad. Which, one might imagine, was not a lot of potatoes.

Didn't the potatoes roll around a little as he picked up the box? Or were they secured by some sort of string?

Still, this gentleman is merely the latest -- and perhaps the most naive -- of people who have been fooled into parting with money for nothing.

Who can ever forget the happenings in Spartanburg, S.C., where not only did a woman pay $180 for a wooden iPad, but two other women paid $250 for a paper laptop?

Should you be wondering how much of a discount the British buyer thought he was getting, the latest iPad 16GB with Wi-Fi costs 399 British pounds (around $620).

Please follow this basic principle: when someone approaches you in the street, it is because they have targeted you, not because they want to do something for you. Always.