Expectant mother Chelsie Collins, 20, hosted a baby shower at Golden Corral in Zanesville, Ohio, last week. But what was supposed to be a joyous celebration quickly took a dark turn.
Collins’s friend “Dory” tweeted an image of the shower — long tables covered in pink tablecloths, pink balloons scattered on the floor, but no people.
“Nobody showed up to my best friend’s baby shower. Just my boyfriend and me,” she tweeted.
According to New York magazine, her now-deleted tweet quickly went viral, drawing more than 16,000 retweets with many sympathizing with Collins.
Some even asked if the mom had a registry or if they could donate money. “Dory” then tweeted a PayPal link for donations and more than 350 gifts were bought on Collins’ now-deleted Walmart registry.
But a few individuals noticed something wasn’t quite right.
For starters, the PayPal link directed people to an account for “Dorthy Holmes,” presumably Dory’s real name.
One Twitter user who goes by the handle @JimiEarly even went as far as to call up the Golden Corral in Zanesville to ask the manager to confirm if only three people showed up to the event. The manager, however, told him that “a party for 12 was booked and 12 showed up.”
In an interview with New York magazine, both Holmes and Collins defended their actions.
“The moment the tweet was posted nobody was there. The tweet was 100 percent accurate at that point in time. It was not a turnout; her aunt was her only relative [at the party],” Holmes said. “I had two of my personal friends. Her aunt brought three children, and her little sister was there. That was it … there was definitely not 12 people there.”
When asked if they considered what they did to be a scam, they said no.
“If they buy me baby stuff and we go take it back for money, that’s what I feel like scamming would actually be,” Collins said. “We are actually going to use this stuff.” They added that they plan to donate some of the gifts to a local women’s shelter.
On Wednesday morning, Holmes broadcast a lengthy Periscope video titled “The Truth” (this has also since been deleted) in an attempt to explain the situation.
She said she was simply trying to mess with her friends and justified her actions by saying that she tweeted the donation link only because people were asking for it. “I didn’t ask for s***. We didn’t ask for it to go viral,” she said.
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