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Thursday, August 13, 2009

Today's Mini Rant: Beggers

The city I live in is often referred to around here as a "small big city." It's big enough with plenty of city-type advantages without being huge, I guess. Like most bigger cities, we have our share of needy folks. There are shelters, soup kitchens, churches who provide dinners, food baskets, and low-cost food for people in need...along with the other usual entities. My experience has been that most people who really need these services are humble folks and appreciate the help they are getting.

Which brings me to people I've run into over and over in and around the downtown area who approach people walking or in your car asking for money handouts...and in my personal experience, these people usually want the money for alcohol or drugs, no matter what they tell you.

They usually come equipped with a made-up sob story meant to make you feel sorry for them or that they are having an unexpected emergency, like their car broke down two blocks from there and they need money to buy gas.

Yes, I have been suckered many times...knowing full well that they are full of baloney, but that maybe they needed that buck or two more than I did.

However, I like many, have been hit hard by this unbelievable economy, and now days even one dollar has a use in my every day life.

Today must've been the day for beggers though. On my way to work this morning, as I was sitting at a red light at an intersection waiting to turn left, I was approached by a woman at my window. Mind you, I'm in the middle of the street and there was about to be oncoming traffic.

This woman approaches my window tearfully, with a little blood on her lip (truthfully, it looked like she bit it), but she says she's been in a horrible fight with her husband and she needs whatever help I can give her...and she proceeds to kneel on the ground -- in the middle of the street -- begging and pleading with me to give her money.

geeeeeez

I yell at her to get up off the ground because she's about to get hit by oncoming traffic... hell, I don't want to be responsible for this woman getting run over next to my car. Anyway, I dig out a couple of dollars and wish her good luck. (shaking my head)

Anyway, I go out for lunch today...which I almost never do anymore because I can't afford to spend the money... but today I did. I pull into a place close to the downtown area and was waiting in the drive-thru line. I am again approached at my window. Different woman, but asking for money. Was she trying to tell me a sad story? No. Did she say she needed it for food? No. She had a definite attitude, practically yelling at me to give her some money.

HELL NO... I got suckered already once today, and I don't have any to spare now anyways... and who wants to "help" someone who has an obvious attitude...

So, she gives me a nasty face, and approaches the car in front of me. That person hands over to her some dollar bills... it was at least $2 and maybe more.

This woman turns around...walks back past my vehicle, waving her newly obtained reward... and snaps her fingers at me yelling, "NOW, wasn't that easy?"

...blink blink...

I could NOT BELIEVE it. I'm thinking...yeah, that sure was easy for YOU!! *I* on the other hand, have to work all day to earn MY money!!

The impossible nerve of some people.

Just wow.... still shaking my head...

9 comments:

Anonymous said...

I save all my useless Canadian coins for just such an opportunity. If you give them pennies, it looks like a lot. Next time you clean out your cupboards, take the food to your car. then you can feed the beggers your stale crackers and chip crumbs, therefore saving your hard earned money. We must all be resourceful in these touch economic tmies.

Kris

Winky Twinky said...

Kris,

I like that idea... I'm gonna use it! I think... let's see, what do I have in my cupboards?...

Guess I ate all my crackers...

There's a can of soup, does that count??

I'll keep searching, thanks for the tip! ;)

wayne said...

Hello i would not have paid here i would have said no and then said now was that easy and would had when some where else lol.

thinkinfyou said...

I read an article the other day that was talking about this very thing,and it went on to say that people can make a decent living doing this,more than minimum wage anyways.
Amazing!

Winky Twinky said...

Wayne: I didn't leave the place, but she left without my money anyway.

ThinkinFyou: I missed that article... maybe I should get in on that part time work.

Nah... I couldn't ever do that in good conscience... damn conscience

CatLadyLarew said...

Giving these folks a business card with the name and number of a nearby shelter and the number for the local police department also really pisses them off... even though that's where they should be going if they truly need assistance.
The expired canned goods are a great idea too.

Winky Twinky said...

Yeah, in the past I've even decided to actually buy some food rather than give them money...they didn't like that either -- very telling. I mean WHAT'S with that attitude?? Sheesh

Except for one old man... I saw him digging through a trash can, so took him a bag with a coupla burgers in it. He was very thankful... That was a feel good day, made me wish I could have helped him more.

Anonymous said...

ooh, i dunno about givin them canned food. after what u said about the crazy lady, she might just chuck the can at your car and shatter a window!

Winky Twinky said...

Anonymous: You have a good point there...thanks