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Old 06-19-2019, 10:17 AM
Irishman is offline
Join Date: Dec 1999
Location: Denton, TX, USA
Posts: 12,551
LiveFree, by your own threads, you have shown a pattern of doing things that make people uncomfortable. You have shown a pattern of looking up information beyond the casual interest, and using that info for your own purposes. That kind of behavior is troubling. Especially when it confronts the person directly.

Maybe you are sincere that you only have good, honest, non-threatening intentions, but your intentions mean squat when other people have to evaluate their own perceived personal safety. Guessing at someone's name from their license plate or using an overheard last name not used when introduced to you and then looking up tax records and other information, regardless of them being public records, is stepping on the boundaries of polite behavior.

And then your attitude in the thread has been a bit dismissive of people's stated concerns, saying they "exacerbate" (exaggerate?), that a poster "blew that way out of proportion". Other comments show that you appear to at least consider the positions, but previous threads have told you this kind of thing is creepy and you continue.

Looking up someone on Facebook is fine, but if you're going to comment on it, probably best to preface your remarks by a) commenting via Facebook, and (or at a minimum) b) prefacing your remarks with "so I came across your Facebook page and noticed...". Don't jump right in with "How is your brother doing?" when the coworker hasn't mentioned his/her brother to you. That kind of "where did you find that out?" is the kind of discord that makes folks uncomfortable, i.e. is creepy.

Wanting to do a kindness for a "friend" is admirable, wanting to make it a surprise is interesting. But be aware not everyone likes surprises, even surprise favors. Some of us are unhappy, for instance, to come home and find our parents redecorated our bedroom and moved everything around while we were away at summer camp. Good intentions, and it seems ungrateful to be annoyed at having our stuff moved around, which only adds to the frustration of the event. Couple that with it being someone you only know at the gym, only "knows" your first name (because you haven't told them your last name), and add in the gender issue, and now that is a more serious issue, not just a family being nice, but an acquaintance stepping beyond the bounds of the established relationship.

The proper thing is to ask to do a favor. Surprises are overrated.

You might be harmless, but plenty of harmful people disguise themselves as harmless.