17 year-old Steven Ortiz is the envy of his friends at Charter Oak High School. The reason? He drives a Porsche Boxster S to school. And before you say it, it doesn’t belong to his parents. It’s legally his. Now I know what you’re thinking at this stage, “How does this punk drive a Porsche to school and I had to make do with a Ford Pinto?” Well, the answer lies with 3 things, an old mobile phone, a little time and Craigslist.
Steven Ortiz used an old mobile phone and bartered his way to a 2000 Porsche Boxster, The San Gabriel Valley Tribune reports. And because he’s now famous for this, people think he can provide this service at random. “I get so many people who say, ‘Can you trade my phone for a car?’ I just say ‘Yeah. It’s not that easy,’” said Steve Ortiz. The barter went like this:
Mr Ortiz got given an old mobile phone from a friend of his. Using Craigslist, he traded it for a better phone, which then got traded for an iPod touch. That, then, got traded for a few dirt bikes, then a MacBook Pro and then, a 1987 Toyota 4Runner. By this time he was only 15 and couldn’t really use it, so that got swapped for a souped-up, off-road golf cart, then another dirt bike, a streetbike, then another series of cars, then a 1975 Ford Bronco. This was the key trade, because older Broncos are considered to be a collector’s item. Mr Ortiz’s Bronco was worth an estimated $15,000. Whilst he had the Bronco, Ortiz was offered a locksmith business, which he turned down. Then came the offer of a Porsche Boxster for his Bronco. What was interesting was that the Porsche was only worth $9000, so it was actually a trade-down, rather than a trade-up.
It’s important, at this stage, to clarify that Steven Ortiz considers himself not to be a crook. “People just make trades,” Ortiz said, “I am not lying to anyone.” So before you all start swearing and screaming what a jammy sod he was, deep down you’re all thinking the same thing. “Wish I’d thought of that…”.