Fans of Gossip Girl and/or The Bling Ring, you are in luck. Over the past few months, the story of the first big “scammin’ for the ‘Gram” con artist has come out, and it is wild. I’m already excited for the movie. Here’s the story. On the surface, Anna Delvey (born Sorokin, age 27) is basically everyone you follow on Instagram. She was rich, she always dressed in designer clothes, and she frequented restaurants whose entrées cost more than your rent. She also happened to be a massive fucking fraud (allegedly), and is currently in jail on charges of alleged grand larceny and theft of services. So, how did this complete rando casually adopt the lifestyle of a Kardashian? (No, this is not a how-to guide. Note the part where she’s in jail.) Let’s take a look. The Cut did an amazing job reporting on it, and you should definitely read the complete story, but if you don’t have time to read it all right now but don’t want to sound stupid at happy hour when literally everyone is talking about it, here’s our shorter breakdown for you to read first.
What Did Anna Delvey Do?
What’s sad/brilliant is how fucking easy it all sounds. Anna shows up with her “ambiguously accented” English, giant Céline sunnies, and a seemingly endless supply of cash. Naturally, people fall all over themselves to befriend this assumed trust fund baby. They spend a few months enjoying extravagant gifts, dinners, and weekend getaways—until Anna’s credit card “stops working,” and someone needs to cover the bill.
In total, Anna allegedly scammed an estimated $275,000, including at least $50,000 in unpaid NYC hotel fees alone. Am I appalled for the individuals Delvey ripped off? Absolutely. Am I the tiniest bit impressed at her innate gift for spending money like a billionaire? Um, yeah. The list of Delvey’s purchases—not including the thousands on airfare, hotels, and decadent vacations—covers a $3,500 private jet rental, multiple Tesla rentals, $4,500 personal training sessions, Gucci sandals, Alexander Wang leggings, Supreme hoodies, $800 highlights, $400 eyelash extensions, cryotherapy, multiple iPhones, and a case of 1975 Dom Perignon. Wait, is this my Pinterest page or someone’s rap sheet? V confusing.
Actual footage of Delvey walking through her hotel lobby:
So, Who TF Was This Girl?
As for the origin story of Anna Delvey, we know she grew up in Russia, went to school in Germany/London, and then got an internship in Paris at Purple magazine. As I assume happens to most people who intern at fashion magazines in Paris, this is where Anna took a turn into becoming a horrible person. The next few years of her life are hazy, but basically she emerges into New York’s social scene. By 2013, she was a Fashion Week regular, attended “all the best parties,” hosted celebrity dinners with random guests like Macaulay Culkin and Martin Shkreli, and was, as one acquaintance put it, part of “the 200 or so people you see everywhere.” Delvey was reportedly not, as you might expect, “superhot…or super-charming; she wasn’t even very nice.” All that mattered was that she was in the right places, wearing the right clothes, and appearing to spend the right amount of money.
Why Did No One Stop Her?
The big question, obviously, is how she kept the alleged scam up so long. At the rate she was burning money, the fact that she didn’t have the capital to back it up definitely should have come up sooner. And the reason it didn’t is definitely not because she had an airtight story or was particularly good at lying. To begin with, this girl was claiming to be a German heiress without really speaking German. As this Independent article points out (a little too gleefully IMO—we get it, Americans are dumb), “a quick quiz in German could have cleared it all up very speedily.” But honestly, no one who was around Delvey had any interest in finding out if her story was fake—people just wanted her to keep buying shit, trusting that the payment would eventually come through.
As for how she covered it when payment didn’t come through—which was often—Delvey allegedly claimed unsuccessful wire transfers from a (nonexistent) trust fund in Germany. She also reportedly fabricated a financial adviser named Peter W. Hennecke who corresponded on her behalf when she attempted to get a loan of $25 to $35 million from various banks. The phone number associated with Hennecke was found to be a burner from a supermarket, his email was an AOL account, and when people started asking questions, Delvey literally pretended Hennecke had died. I cannot make this up. Ultimately, her debts caught up to her, and she was arrested outside rehab facility Passages in Malibu. How very Lohan of her.
What’s She Doing Now?
As mentioned, Delvey is currently in jail, a turn of events she’s taken surprisingly well. “People seem to think it’s horrible,” Delvey says about literal prison, “but I see it as like, this sociological experiment.” Many quotes from Delvey’s time in jail give me pause, like when she marvels over her cellmates’ accounts of identity theft (“I didn’t realize it was so easy”), and the tidbit that “the murderers were the most interesting to her.”
Essentially, this girl is troubled—a fact equally on display in her still-existing Instagram account, which features terrible selfies interspersed with pictures of literally blank white space. Also, most of the comments on these pictures are from clearly fake accounts, with 5-10 posting the same comment verbatim within minutes. This is not the Instagram account of someone who is okay.
If there’s a lesson to learn here, it’s that owning designer athleisure and keeping a stack of $100 bills handy is a great way to convince people you have a trust fund. Seriously though, it’s an extreme example of how the Instagram existence we crave is more often than not an illusion, specifically designed to blind people with displays of money while obscuring the reality underneath. Maybe if we were less desperate to make our lives LOOK wealthy and fabulous, we wouldn’t be so eager to believe someone like Delvey, who displayed more than a few red flags. And maybe we could stop breeding criminals whose primary goal is to spend more money on bottle service and sweatpants from Supreme. Just a thought.
Images: Giphy (5)
With Groundhog Day coming up, we’re slowly being reminded that winter is almost over and it might be time to switch up our fitness routines. I mean, don’t get me wrong. Betches are all about routine. Like, we literally have a written list of all the shit we like doing. But as much as we love sticking to our favorite workouts and eating the same Sweetgreen salad four times a week, it can also be good to switch it up sometimes to keep shit from getting repetitive. Why do you think Bieber dyes his hair every three months? He gets bored, like the rest of us. Here are some swaps you should be making in your routine this month:
If You Always Go For The Elliptical Or Treadmill…
Try lifting weights. I mean, we’re not judging you for blasting Spotify’s Rap Caviar playlist while lightly jogging for thirty minutes, but if you’re bored of your light cardio routine and you’re wondering why you’re not toned AF yet, consider strength training. Most girls don’t realize that by weight-lifting, your body continues to burn calories even after the gym, and putting some muscle on will actually allow you to burn more calories at rest, like even on days where you’re lying on the couch watching This is Us.
If You Always Order The Salad…
Try a complex carb, or dare I suggest some healthy fats. You can only pretend you enjoy that spinach/tomato/low-fat Balsamic combo for so long before you start gagging at the thought of mixed greens. Salad is obviously healthy AF, but there are usually other healthy options on the menu too, and it’s okay to eat carbs and fat sources. Try ordering a whole wheat wrap or avocado toast on Ezekiel bread. It has a shit ton of fiber and lots of antioxidants, which will keep you full without making you fat. Is butter a carb?
If You Always Tap It Back….
Try doing bodyweight HIIT cardio instead. We love SoulCycle more than the blonde botoxed Long Island mom on the bike next to us, but sometimes you don’t need a 45-minute cycling class to get in your cardio fix. HIIT is all about getting your heart rate up and burning a ton of calories in a short amount of time, so you don’t even need to leave your house to get in a sick workout. Try spending fifteen minutes alternating cardio moves, like jump squats, burpees, and plyo lunges. You’ll surprised how sweaty you’ll get when you’re working in shorter intervals, and you don’t even need to pay an extra three dollars for water. Win-win.
If You Always Work Out At Night…
Try waking up early. No betch is naturally an early riser, but sometimes you need to push yourself to get shit done. Wake up, take an espresso shot, and haul your ass to the gym. Morning workouts will give you extra energy throughout the day and will give you more time to do your own thing after work instead of worrying about getting to the gym. Happy hour will feel so much more rewarding knowing you already worked out like, ten hours earlier. Who knew life existed before 10am?
If You Always Go To Yoga Or Barre…
Try a Pilates class on The Reformer. Yoga is great for flexibility and barre movements will elongate your muscles, but pilates will take your bodyweight planks to the next level and tone almost every muscle in your body. The Reformer machine will strengthen the muscles you don’t usually hit with yoga poses or barre moves, and it’s easy enough on your joints to prevent injuries. You’ll end up shaking and sweating more in the first few minutes than you do in your 90 minute heated Vinyasa. Get on the machine.
If You Always Hit Up The Sauna Afterwards…
Try Cryotherapy. Sweating it out in the sauna after a workout feels amazing, but that’s yesterday’s news. The Cryotherapy method is the newest fitness recovery trend and it basically entails standing in a deep-freezing tank for less than five minutes. The shock of the freezing air on your body is supposed to help you lose weight, reduce muscle soreness, and even help you sleep better. Celebs like Yolanda Hadid and Derek Hough swear by their Cryotherapy sessions, and it’s literally taking over Hollywood faster than the La La Land soundtrack. Book a session.