A Reader Wants To Give Me A Free Jeep But I Think It Might Be A Trap

It has to be, right?
It has to be, right?

You know those sketchy emails that promise buckets of money, beautiful Eastern European brides and vastly enlarged penises? Do not click them; they are all traps. I know this from experience, and yet, when I received an email offering something far superior than even the finest of penis-extenders, I clicked it. Am I doomed?

I have faith that most Jalopnik readers are stand-up citizens who give to the poor, use turn signals and help grannies cross busy streets. But recently, one reader named Matt Calhoun offered me a free 1992 Jeep Cherokee Briarwood and “several large containers with a bunch of random XJ parts that [he’d] let go at a steep discount,” and now I’m a bit worried.

His email seems too good to be true, and I can’t help but wonder if maybe he’s trying to take advantage of my unreasonable obsession with old Jeeps. It is my biggest weakness, after all.


What are his motives? Is this a trap? Is Matt Calhoun the real name of infamous Jalopnik commenter david-tracy-is-a-wanker, and if so, is this finally his chance to lure me into a dark barn and harvest my organs like he’s been promising for months? I have so many questions.

Photo: Matt Calhoun
Photo: Matt Calhoun

Maybe I’m being overly dramatic. Sure, at first glance, the email seems sketchy—like leading a moth to a flame. But there’s more to it than just “Hey, here’s a free Jeep.” After all, Matt (if that’s even his real name) admits that the Jeep’s venerable 4.0-liter has a pretty nasty engine knock (just listen to that poor motor in the video below), and that the security alarm is constantly malfunctioning. Plus, there’s quite a bit of rust eating up the floorboards. He claims that, because of all these issues, he just can’t get anyone to give cash for the Jeep, hence why he’s giving it away gratis.

That seems reasonable. Or maybe he knows that telling me about the Jeep’s problems will make me want it more.


Honestly, at this point, I’ve concluded that this is almost definitely trap, which sucks, because it means there’s a nonzero chance I’ll be devoid of a few organs by the end of this month. But just look at those wood side panels, it’s probably worth it!


Plus, I’ve been looking through my engineering books, and I think there are some organs that I can totally do without. Like, do I really need my entire lungs? If he takes a chunk of one of them, I can totally make up for the small displacement by bolting on a junkyard turbo for extra volumetric efficiency.

If he takes my liver, I can just plumb an inline fuel-filter in with a couple of hose clamps (vein clamps?) to keep my blood clean. And if he wants a couple of valves from my heart? No problem, I’ve got four of those, when we all know that all I need is a single intake and a single exhaust.


And if he doesn’t take my organs, but instead tries robbing me for all I’m worth, that’s no big deal either. I’ve got a check coming in from a Nigerian prince.

Yeah, I’m going for it.

Sr. Tech Editor, Jalopnik. Owner of far too many Jeeps. Follow my instagram (@davidntracy). Always interested in hearing from engineers—email me.

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