Anna, Rachel, New York Magazine discussed on Rocket
We'll find out if scam downtown is available for swimmers ways. We should fund that show that that's that's a really really good idea. Thank you squarespace. Okay rocket listeners. It's christina nick year making a little bit of an edits postproduction edit really to hear our interview with rachel williams the author of the book my friend anna was so good and it went on for a really long time. So what we've actually done is split into two parts so this is the first part of our interview with rachel and the second part will be airing next week. Frequent rocket listeners will know that we're a little bit obsessed with scams from theranos to move past to fire festival. We frequently comment on in. I would even say that we delight in covering scams and scamsters. One of the subjects we've spoken about repeatedly is anna dovey dovey whose whose real name is anna. Sorokin pretended to be a german heiress. She's actually russian and she gritted new york city hotels and her associates out of hundreds of thousands thousands of dollars. She was convicted on several counts of attempted grand larceny earlier this year and sentenced to four to twelve years in prison now. If you know about delhvi it's probably because of jessica pressler's amazing two thousand eighteen new york magazine cover story about horizon fall and shonda rhimes is working on a show about debbie based on pressler's article for net flex now believe we and by we i almost certainly me me because i do recall both simone and possibly bree protesting called l._v. the quote patron saint of rocket and our year end show last december with <hes>. There's something fascinating about a nobody who was successfully s. fully able to convince new york city both businesses and regular people that she was rich but one person who almost certainly does not share in our our delight or kind of the cultural collective delight over delhvi and her crimes is rachel deloche williams one of anna's former friends and one of the biggest victims of anna's ms deception <hes> the d._r. is that delbene invited williams on an all expense paid vacation in marrakesh but then when it came time to pay a anna couldn't come up with the money the intimacy williams to put down her own credit card promising to pare back and the bill was sixty three thousand dollars more than blooms made in an entire year and delhvi then never paid her back and in fact rachel's friend anna wasn't rich at all and this theft is what wound up leading to an arrest williams a former homers photo editor for vanity fair wrote about her experiences with shelby and the impact the crime has had on her life in her book my friend anna and in true fire festival fashion one one and it'll be t._v. Show isn't enough and h._b._o. And lena dunham have optioned racial story and rachel is here with us today to talk about her book and anna rachel thank you so so must much for joining us. Thank you so much for having me. That was a great introduction. Yeah i was gonna say. I know that was really long but i wanted to try to kinda. Give people context. Was there anything anything that i missed were misconstrued before we continue no not a bit i feel like i just relived the past well in a eh. Eh not not as the first time so. I wanna tell you and we turned to book you for the show. This is so so true all three of us like usually when we bring an author onto the show. One of us read the book all three of us. Yes became obsessed with this book. I'm reading thing for freaking having rail to different events. I've got my whole staff in my car and they're listening to your book as we're driving from event ventoux event in massachusetts and it's dudes that they don't they don't care about a- i'm like i'm the candidate. You're gonna listen to this and you're gonna like it so in canada. You've got my vote. If i looked at my dad who's running for congress <unk> while i went through part of the experience oh yeah and as a democrat democrat in tennessee <hes> he's mental healthcare professional so it was a curve ball signed. It was his first time running for a cup for public office but i got to see the end zaid of a congressional campaign campaign exhausting work. I grew up in mississippi in christina grew up next door to us well. I'm the ticket instant shined to you guys so yeah. <hes> i mean i guess it was started about the book it really opens with your friendship with <hes> with with anna and yeah. I'm older than you and christina. I'm forty two and i it it it. It really felt like a a agip starts being a genuine millennial friendship. I mean you're going to like this uptown like detox bar. You're being irradiated from the inside five why riding around listening to <hes> listen to hip hop music doing all debts and then it takes us really dark turn in the red the red the media coverage about this new about the hotel the horror there but what i found so compelling about your book was was you kind of go from this friendship into seeing like how deeply uncomfortable it is to see like security guards toasted in your hotel room trying to intimidate you into paying an and edges being deliberately oblivious. I mean i i already know way was it's like i read the book at all or what was that like yeah i think in in manhattan in the in the place where we both lived for a time you know her sort sort of <unk> spontaneity and impulsiveness the weight and the risks seemed much lighter and i didn't realize how deep that sort of risk taking gang went until all of a sudden we were america and she had very little concern for you know safety and an authority in a in a very different setting and it felt out much much more serious and you know over the course of the week that that pressure and intensity intention intensified <hes> until my last they america's when these managers appeared in the villa and would leave without a wouldn't leave without a functioning credit card <hes> and yeah that's when i realized you know what this person. Jason actually isn't someone you know. It was a culmination of things but over the course of that time. I certainly realized this was fun but this isn't a person who shares with my values are shares. My outlook on safety or or worldview are so many different things. I you know it's not that i recognized her as an impostor that stage each but i saw in the friendship that this person i wouldn't take a big step back from yellowish ler so let me ask you about that because this is the question that i had i had it. When i read your vanity affair article i had when i read the new york magazine article had it reading your book and you. You've answered it a little bit but i have. I can't stop fixating on this talk. Let me through the credit card issue like what was that like got you to pull out your not. Just your personal inexpert your corporate amex and hand that over over. Was it just like sharing with it. The fear was it. You believed or like talk me through that because that's the whole thing sharon. I'm trying to imagine myself in this situation. I'm like i don't think i would ever do do that or at least i hope but talk me what that was like part of the way that cons works like khan confidence tricks work i think is it's it's a combination of things have started with once not a small thing but one thing i could wrap my head around which was booking the flights which was a manageable amount of money for me to front but it starts is there and then it's a little bit more and a little bit more and it's kind of like you don't realize how deep you're in when you're in it until you step out of it later and you're like oh my god. How did this happen the a hotel the way that unfolded specifically was very <hes> different. I'd say from the money i fronted outside of the hotel you know for captains in the marketplace for the flights where it added up to a significant amount of money but something i had agreed to to some extent not realizing obviously that she wasn't gonna wire me the money as she promised the hotel itself else you know firstly. I had no idea that i had that high credit limit. That was a shock. I you know i saw all those people saying like how out of this girl at like it was a lot of that charge card not a credit card and usually inexact not correct. It's a soft off-spinning limit. They check your spending patterns responsible lending a group. I didn't know existed until his experience flags account. If you go outside of your regular spending patterns when that morning when i woke up it was it was a thursday was my last full day america. It was the perfect storm. It was like the trainer was sick and needed to go home. Everybody was relying on me you to figure everything out which i can't. You know totally blame them. I had kind of stressed myself into the symbolic <unk> involuntary producer position because it's what i in my nature you know <hes> mhm that i am often and caretaker plus. It was my job <hes> another thing. I think that made me vulnerable is the fact that i was a photo producer and i was so used to operating reading under stress in putting out fires into making sure everybody else have they needed so it actually made me think vulnerable in some ways to a situation sort of getting pulled in and and taking it upon myself although i didn't see a way out of it <hes> but i also think that's the same skill set the problem solving the looking for creative solutions. The the <hes> stress under pressure air. Sorry grace under pressure sort of having to think quickly is part of how i got out of it as well but anyway i was told that the the credit card they needed to have unfiled these two managers who were not leaving without a credit card. I was told that they needed it for a temporary. Hold which hotel is supposed to have before you check in you know when you gaito tell. They have a hotel <unk> credit card on file so that they can authorize whatever incidentals blah blah blah that like that's what they were missing so i was told this credit card is just is going to be on file until misde- l._v. settles the balance which she'll have to do and she will be to settle the full balance when she checks out she was leaving after me the following mm day so i felt kind of had a safety net because i had an earlier flight you know at the first thing in the morning so i thought you know worse case scenario. I'll be gone before her. She can't turn turned to meet a fix this. If i'm already ryan's winning when in actuality what probably happened is that she was able to convince them. Will you have a credit card on file. You can just the news that <hes> so we ended up like you thought like okay. She can't screw me but she did. Let me i got the sense reading reading your book that basically from the minute you handed over that card your anxiety kind of started and and and you started to kind of worry about that a lot you wrote a lot about the ridiculous excuses that she offered over the coming days and weeks. When did it start to sink in that you were in like really deep and that she might not be paying you back or gessler mortal point when it did occur to you that she might not be able to pay you back. It took a painfully long time. I think probably there other people who would have figured that part out faster. I i think part of the reason why it took me so long. It took me to answer your question directly. I think it took me like maybe a month a month. <hes> until i was really questioning whether or not she could access the money at that point. I wasn't questioning that she was who she said she was really believed that for <hes> i take two months because i she was so consistent in her storytelling that whatever i hadn't heard from her directly i heard from other people and i i you know i had gone out out of i had picked up the people who had met her through in sat them down and said what do you know about this person..