Feeling a bit nostalgic lately so I did a search on the net for Mr.Boddy; this thread was the top result. Many moons ago I used to post on Nico but under a different username which I've long forgotten. The Jeremy Boddy victims facebook group no longer exists so my hope is that someday, some may stumble on this post, and perhaps collectively we can get some more closure on the events which unfolded all those years ago. Regardless, I felt compelled to finally share my story.
I am one of Jeremy's victims, although I must admit... one of the luckier ones. After wiring Jeremy $18,500 for a Toyota Supra, eventually, I came to the realization that it was never coming. I know too well the feelings of shame and disappointment felt by his victims. Barely a moment went by where I could escape my thoughts of frustration, anger, and depression, sleepless nights were the norm. My heart goes out to everyone who experienced this pain. It's all too easy to point fingers and laugh at people getting scammed on the internet but the truth is Jeremy talked the talk and the community enabled him. Some forums and even articles at the time were quick to praise him for his unique business abilities without due and proper research. The site was plastered with "testimonials", referral phone contacts were provided and the entire enterprise seemed as legitimate as they come. I think what sealed the deal for me was seeing the full-page advertisement in one of the tuner magazines I read regularly. This did not happen because of a lack of research, the negative media simply did not yet exist. The point I'm trying to make here is that it really can happen to anyone.
Worse than the lost money were the lost dreams of ever owning my dream car, for car guys, this hurts so much more. Not only that but at the time my life was in the car world, it was my reason for existence. Without it, I felt lost. I didn't want to hear about or see anything car-related because it would just bring up bad feelings. It was an incredibly tough time in my life.
I'll be honest, the last thing you want to admit to yourself is that the guy you had just sent your life savings had ripped you off but eventually after countless deadlines were not met and the negative publicity started to ramp up, I had to admit defeat, it was a gut-wrenching feeling. I hounded Jeremy on a daily basis, often multiple times a day. This usually meant tracking down whatever new email or phone number he was using that week. It must have been two and half years of five-plus daily emails or attempted phone calls before even he finally admitted I wasn't getting the car. When he finally gave in and sent me a little bit of my money back, it felt like a huge win, I think around $3000 bucks. At the time I was happy to get something but part of me felt terrible, second-guessing where this money came from, I hoped this wasn't someone else's lost dreams sitting in my bank account. It enabled me to pay off the remainder of my credit I had taken out to buy this car, at least I was no longer paying interest on the money. It was a good feeling, though not enough though to mentally write off the loss, my savings were still gone, so I persisted. Getting back something gave me hope there was still a chance to recover the rest, it made me thirsty for more.
I think it took another year of relentless chasing but somehow, (and I'll never know how) I talked Jeremy into surrendering another asset to finish paying me back. I reluctantly but not reluctantly agreed to accept his salvage title 350z as repayment. He was forthcoming that it was having some transmission issues, which seemed oddly honest. If this car actually existed (which was a big if), I wasn't expecting much but even a really bad 350z was better than nothing, even if it wasn't my Toyota Supra. The problem was the more than 1000km distance between us, him being in Peterborough, me being on the east coast.
I knew I couldn't give Jeremy the opportunity to back out by forcing him to ship the car, I wasn't taking that risk. At the same time, I figured there was a 99% chance that if I went through all the effort of having a freight company arrive at his house, he'd either have changed his mind, given me a fake address or this entire car exchange was another time delay to add to the already heaping pile of excuses. This was long before google street view was a thing and I had little desire to pay out of pocket for a plane ticket only to find myself standing at the gates of an empty warehouse.
What I really needed was someone to verify the car but that quickly seemed to be an uphill battle. I reached out on a few forums to see if anyone might help but perhaps unsurprisingly no stranger was willing to engage themself in this tremendously sketchy undertaking. I didn't have any contacts in the area and what seemed like my last shimmer of hope was stomped out. More than 10 years later, I still remember sitting in my office chair again feeling frustrated, endlessly scrolling through Facebook searching for a miracle connection when...I found one. Turns out I did know someone who not only was in Ontario but as luck would have it, she lived in Peterborough. Worst case I figured, she'd at least be able to drive by to check and see if the address was legit. But, there was a small problem. This was an ex-girlfriend, whom the last time I'd seen, more than four years prior had very literally thrown a cup of hot coffee on my head; you could say the relationship didn't end on a high note.
Still, she was my only chance, so I did what any guy would do with fifteen thousand on the line, I begged... a lot... Luckily she always was on the adventurous side and being a car girl, I think she knew what this meant to me. She could have easily told me to pound sand but she hesitantly agreed to not only check the address but to go as far as picking up the Z. I made arrangements with Jeremy and that weekend she was scheduled to drive to his house with her boyfriend to get the car. The plan for her to let me know when she had it home, I'd then worry about getting it back to New Brunswick. I honestly don't think I slept for the rest of that week, emotions shifting regularly from excitement to nervousness, that this could all soon be coming to an end was a surreal feeling.
The night prior to the big day, I was out at a friend's birthday party at Boston Pizza when my phone rang, it was Jeremy... All these years later and it was the first time I'd ever actually heard his voice, hundreds of phone calls I made, he never did answer. I figured this was him calling to explain why she couldn't pick up the car, I'm confident that when I answered he could hear the anger, disappointment, and frustration in my voice. However, to my utter surprise, he called to let me know the car was ready, that he'd just finished waxing it and that he was sorry that this had gone on so long. In my head, I'd built him into a monster, unforgiving for his actions, cold and soulless. He certainly didn't sound like I'd imagined, we'll never know if he was faking it but in that moment, he sounded defeated, regretful and apologetic. I'll forever wonder the real motive of that phone call, did he think I'd somehow vouch for him? That I'd forget the years of emotional pain he'd put me through? I don't know but still, after hanging up the phone, I'd question if it was a legitimately sincere Jeremy or if this was one last "f*** you" before once again getting my hopes up for nothing.
That night I definitely did not sleep, tomorrow was going to be either one of the worst or best days of my life.
I was at work the next day, putting in hours like a zombie, I was physically there but my mind was not. The minutes dragged on like nothing I've ever experienced. It was painful but at the same time good to have some distraction from my thoughts. I was on my lunch when I got the Facebook message I'll never forget. It was my ex...she had the car... I still can't verbalize the feeling I had at that moment. Pure elation does not begin to justify it. It's not like winning the lottery because you don't spend every waking moment obsessing over not winning a lottery you've never won. Having the money taken and then returned is on another level but it goes deeper, like I explained earlier, cars were my life. How do you explain the feeling of losing your life and then getting it back? I'm pretty sure the entire city heard my screams of joy.
A couple of days later a friend and I made the fourteen-hour trek to Peterborough to get the 350z. We then turned around and drove another fourteen-hours back home. The transmission was remarkably better than I thought, only having a slight grind at high RPM on one gear shift. It reeked like cigarettes and the driver's window regulator was broken but a few weeks later I'd sell it and recoup some money. By the time I paid the tax, interest on my loan, and for the trip, I likely lost some money. I've honestly never done the math and at this point couldn't find the numbers if I tried. In my head, I'm even and that's good enough for me.
I'm forever grateful to my friend for coming on the journey but more so for my ex-girlfriend. She didn't have to do this and it may sound dramatic but reflecting back now, she might have saved my life. At the time that amount of money seemed irreplaceable, I had some pretty dark thoughts. As minor as getting that car for me may seem on the surface, I don't know what I would have possibly done without her. Maybe Jeremy would have shipped the car, maybe I would have flown there, maybe I would have just given up. I'm confident that like so many others I would have never gotten another dime.
I often wonder if Jeremy's fate was legitimate or if it was another one of his stories. If anyone could pull off faking their own death, it would be him. He certainly has enough enemies and the motivation to do so. I'm so paranoid at this point that even if I saw a tombstone with his name on it, I wouldn't believe it. If it is true, ironically my ex was a big dodge neon enthusiast, something we passionately debated, they weren't my favorite. The car that hit him supposedly was an SRT-4. It somehow brings the story full circle for me, like somehow, on some spiritual level my ex helped to get retribution. As evil as that may seem.
So that is the end of my tale. If anyone else has any Jeremy stories, I'd love to hear them.