Will the Real Jeff Turner Please Stand Up?

Once in a great while, an item of news is so strange that it acts as Kryptonite to our Superman-level power of snark. Making an incisive observation proves impossible, and we’re left to utter things like, “What an idiot!” and “Who does that?!”

1212608506Today, the story of Somerville’s Ronnie Craven has left us (almost) snark-less.

We first learned about him in a Boston.com report that paints him a cautionary tale for online dating.

A man in the Boston area who has been passing himself off as a former NBA player and Sonics front-office employee told the Seattle Post-Intelligencer he is an impostor.

Ronnie Craven of Somerville, Mass., went by the name Jeff Turner. When contacted by the Seattle paper he says he misrepresented himself on an online dating site and lied to women for sex.

That puts showing up for a date with a guy who’s a full foot shorter than his profile claims into perspective, doesn’t it? (Though we’re willing to bet that Craven is a good deal shorter than 6-foot-9 Jeff Turner.)

The Seattle Post-Intelligencer fleshes out the details.

For months, a Boston-area woman thought she was dating a Sonics front-office employee and former NBA player named Jeff Turner[.] She thought she had scored a figurative slam-dunk in the Internet dating game.

But when the man she was falling for suddenly left his Somerville, Mass., home and stayed away for three weeks, the woman became suspicious. A Google search helped her discover that this man was not Jeff Turner, but a habitual impostor who had been posing as a Sonics employee for the past several months.

But wait, it gets weirder. Not only was Craven lying to his online girlfriend, he was also lying to the Somerville News, which ran a story about the Somerville boy done good on April 9, only to find that they’d been bamboozled worse than the Herald.

When he came into the News office in April, he was wearing a SuperSonics jumpsuit. He passed out team t-shirts to friends and family. After the story was posted on TheSomervilleNews.com Craven said he went online and anonymously wrote 50 comments under the story lauding himself as “an asset to the community” and “a hunk.”

When a reporter interviewed him for this story the question that kept popping up was, “why?”

“I don’t know why I did it. I keep coming up with question marks when I think about it,” Craven said.

Craven told the Post-Intelligencer he did it for love. (We’re paraphrasing.)

“This wasn’t meant to be (anything negative) toward the Sonics,” said Craven, who said he has three daughters, is separated from his wife and works in property management. “People get lied to all the time. Did I do anything illegal against the Sonics? No. Did I go out and represent the Sonics in any fashion? I’m not actually proposing that I did that. Did I do this for the broad? Yes.”

I did it for the broad. Obviously.