Vespa Thousand Oaks officially released this statement at midnight, saying they are putting an abrupt end to Peter Ramstine’s “Vespadition” campaign of which they were a primary sponsor, due to allegations of impropriety coming in from various sources, including this anonymous letter.
10 thoughts on “Vespadition cut short”
I’m not surprised! Frankly, I thought his motive was dubious. Are there people out there who need to see a guy riding his scooter across the country to know that they can hop on down to the local soup kitchen and volunteer?
The internet is a powerful tool for (mis)information.
I don’t know if the guy is a con or not, but change the name and the quest and it sounds an awful lot like stories I have heard before.
Conmen can always find someone to defend them (or they’d be lousy conmen) and innocent people will always be falsely accused. Tough to tell the difference sometimes.
First I had read about it, the ride was already closed down.
I’m trying not forming any opinions about any of it because I don’t know any details. and I don’t want to know at this point
Bah, drama. Back to the stories about $150USD barrels of oil, shortages of scooters, and $5USD a gallon for gas, as well as the Italjet Dragsters that’ll never show up.
Frankly, every scooterists nation-wide should’ve thrown bucks at this guy just for riding a scooter around the country. The fact he’s a “con-man” *(and what scooterist isn’t?) doesn’t mean dick. The fact is he rode a 250cc scooter around the country. The fact he was looking more for quick nookie & a smack on the ass more than time helping hobos at a soup kitchen shouldn’t mean anything.
And as punshiment, he now has to ride *back* from WVa on a Honda Spree bought at a yardsale for $25.
George Orwell perhaps said it best: “All ‘saints’ should be considered guilty until proven otherwise.”
I just found out about this story on scoot.net. I had not heard of Vespadition before this. It seems to me that if the rider in question was not living up to his obligations in the eyes of the sponsors then they have aright to withdraw their support. I think the rub is that the whole trip was advertised as a promotion for kindness, compassion, and volunteerism and it devolved into something else. Whether the rider was a con-man or not is a matter of debate, however the sponsors pulled support because if at least appears there was some sort of fraud committed.
Hopefully in the future business sponsors will ensure they vet those they are considering giving support to and have a clear set of expectations to be met by the rider on a promotional journey such as this.
P.E.A.C.E Scooter, a similar awareness raising endeavor using a scooter, seems to be working, and I think the concept is a brilliant way to bring people together at many levels.
In our area there have been news reports about con-men looking for donations for charity (churches, kids sports teams, animal shelters, etc) at major road intersections with buckets. It is true that some people doing this are legitimate, but I do not donate to anyone collecting like this unless I know the collector personally, because that is the only way I can be assured the charity is legitimate aat the spur of the moment.
It seems to me that Vespadition is just a reminder to ensure due diligence when choosing a charity.
I am thankful for the internet in these cases, because at least with the online community there is a larger audience from which to gather information from before choosing whether to support a cause.
Regardless of why the trip ended, Peter still managed to ride a 250GTS VESPA across the country in some pretty horrendous weather. That’s a feat in an of itself.
I had seen this story on the local Los Angeles news when he left town. It looked promising. I even donated a few bucks to the ride. Con-Man ? WOW. I guess it takes all kinds. I guess unless he was outride robbing people or banks then it was not too bad and he probably did promote the scooter world a bit. Kinda funny he pulled it off, to a point.
I travelled across the country in 2001. I met Peter at a hostel in Austin, became friends, and took him along as a travelling partner. At the time he was on a mission to walk across the the country doing kindness, compassion, good deeds, etc. I was with him, or he with me, rather, for about two weeks and by the time we’d made it to Moab, Utah I was thoroughly convinced he was a con man. We had stayed at the homes of people he’d met the whole way, and when I told one woman in denver I didn’t trust him, she agreed. I hatched my plan, but couldn’t pull it off the right way. Back in moab. Lady luck shined on me when Peter, who is extremely allergic to bees was stung. He was taken to the hospital, then air-lifted to hospital in Grand Junction, CO. The next day I drove back, dropped his stuff off and headed back to my hometown of Baltimore, MD. I now reside in Austin, TX. Time of my life but yes, he’s a total con man.
I am so late to this party, but I came across it and had to share. Peter Ramstine is the worst kind of con artist. The lies run so deep it is unreal. There was a website up, one of 8 women up and down the east coast that he was bamboozling (at the same time- during his “Path 2 Zen” days- the big walk, Andrew) made it and compared and contrasted all of the lies. These were not stupid women either. Each of them professionals with big big hearts. Peter’s lies about his background- he is not from New Zealand.. his mother is. He is from Pennsylvania. About his parents and/or wife being killed in a bombing or by cancer… this ridiculous “walk”. My friend, one of the eight, during his great “walk” drove him most places and he only seemed to go from Baltimore to her town in Maryland to North Carolina and back. His movement seemed to be based on what happened in his match.com and S&M style match site. It was disgusting. No helping anyone but himself. And seriously putting these women at risk. Luckily they escaped with just very hurt feelings and a load of anger to deal with.
We heard the bee story. Glad to know that that was at least partially true. We also heard he was hit by a bus in NY. Mugged somewhere, where he lost most of his teeth. Then all of a sudden he got brand new teeth. Nobody can explain the teeth. After a while, it was all so ridiculous we just had to let it all go.
One of the last things (before this scooter scam), he ended up conning his way onto a sailboat manned by one other, saying he was a trained boat captain. He ended up getting kicked off the boat, of course, knowing nothing of the world of sailing. Unfortunately, the man who was doing this sail, was a stroke survivor and it was a charity for stroke awareness or something. He was pretty angry and had to find someone in a strange place to take his place.
I try to keep tabs on him, look him up from time to time. It is always the same outcome. Good people crying over/defending/cursing this man. Peter is not just a conman. He is dangerous in so many ways. I often wonder what his payoff is? Money? He hardly gets any before he’s found out. And it’s always a fake charity angle. I can’t begin to figure him out. Like some sort of savior complex? I don’t know. Maybe it’s just that good of a cover. People don’t suspect people who are helping others, I guess.
I don’t know if anyone will read this, but if you do, please take heed. This guy is no joke.
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