Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 05-22-2018, 08:58 AM
FairyChatMom FairyChatMom is offline
I'm nice, dammit!
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2000
Location: Southern Merrylande
Posts: 39,188
"I'm not asking for money - just some gas..."

When I was in Ocala, Florida this past weekend, I was approached at the gas pump by a young man with a sob story about having his grandmother and his son in the "silver SUV over there" and he needed a couple of gallons of gas to get to Gainesville to see his other son. He insisted he wasn't asking for money, but for some gas. When I declined, I heard him give the same story to at least 2 others filling their cars.

First thing that came to mind was "SCAM" - his sob story, his demeanor, the very expensive phone in his hand - was I really to believe that between him and his grandmother they didn't have $5 to put a couple of gallons of gas into his SUV? Maybe if he was driving an old piece of crap an looked less well-fed and well-dressed, I might have been more inclined to believe that he was a traveler in distress. Maybe I completely misjudged him. But I don't think so.

In any event, I carry very little cash and I was on a rather expensive trip to help out my own family, so every time I stopped for gas, it was a few more dollars than I'd budgeted for. I'm pretty trusting and gullible most of the time, but there's something about being approached at a gas station...

Was I a cold-hearted bitch or a sensible, cautious traveler wary of strangers? Have you had to deal with similar scenarios?
  #2  
Old 05-22-2018, 09:03 AM
WOOKINPANUB WOOKINPANUB is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: May 2005
Location: St Petersburg, Floriduhhh
Posts: 6,365
I'll say cautious and sensible. I have heard that schtick so many time. Apparently it has replaced the old "I need money for the bus to Clearwater". I don't want to be coldhearted and I often give change to people but most definitely not to the ones with an elaborate, phony story.
  #3  
Old 05-22-2018, 09:08 AM
Bullitt Bullitt is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: SF Giants Nation 10-12-14
Posts: 22,822
You were fine to do that, you were sensible. It’s not easy figuring out who is genuine, and who is a scammer.

I often think they are scams for drug or booze money. A few weeks back a guy was standing by his run down van with a cardboard sign, Need Gas. I don’t carry much cash but I swiped my card and pumped a few gallons in, about $25 worth.
__________________

California: vote Jeff Bleich for California Lieutenant Governor!

http://www.jeffBleich.com/
  #4  
Old 05-22-2018, 09:09 AM
senoy senoy is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Feb 2018
Posts: 387
Yes, it is very likely a scam. At the same time, I'm a religious person and we're taught that it's our duty to give and then it's their problem if they misuse it. Of course, as in all things, there is moderation, it's not reasonable to donate yourself into penury. And if given the choice between a 'good charity' and a 'bad charity' there's certainly no harm in choosing wisely. The real meaning of the teaching is that it's ok to give someone the benefit of the doubt and it's even OK if you get ripped off from time to time if your heart is in the right place.
  #5  
Old 05-22-2018, 09:10 AM
DCnDC DCnDC is online now
Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: The Dueling Grounds
Posts: 10,773
You don't owe anything to beggars, especially ones that won't take "no" for an answer and/or are obviously full of shit.

I deal with this all the time. I'm not unsympathetic but I will not tolerate being harassed.

First, I offer whatever change I have in my pocket, if any. If I don't have any or if they persist after I've given them my change, I politely but firmly tell them "No." If they won't accept that, then I'm afraid I have to get nasty. I've told more than a few very insistent beggars that "The only thing I'm giving away for free today is a knife to the face, so if you don't want one of those, GET THE FUCK OUT OF MY FACE."
  #6  
Old 05-22-2018, 09:23 AM
Omar Little Omar Little is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Apr 2000
Location: Within
Posts: 11,855
I would have had him pull his SUV over to the pump I was at, and would have put a couple of gallons into his car. I fail to see the scam here unless, he wasn't amenable to that.

Many people that are on the edge of destitute of poverty own SUV's and have smart phones. They have misplaced priorities, which is partly why they are on the edge of being destitute.
  #7  
Old 05-22-2018, 09:24 AM
Morgenstern Morgenstern is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Southern California
Posts: 11,866
Beggar: Do you have any spare change?
Me: No speak Engrish. (smiles)
  #8  
Old 05-22-2018, 09:32 AM
Czarcasm Czarcasm is offline
Charter Member
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Apr 1999
Location: Portland, OR
Posts: 55,997
Quote:
Originally Posted by Morgenstern View Post
Beggar: Do you have any spare change?
Me: No speak Engrish. (smiles)
Why just say no, when you can be ethnically offensive at the same time?
  #9  
Old 05-22-2018, 09:34 AM
QuickSilver QuickSilver is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Mar 2000
Posts: 17,489
Quote:
Originally Posted by DCnDC View Post
I've told more than a few very insistent beggars that "The only thing I'm giving away for free today is a knife to the face, so if you don't want one of those, GET THE FUCK OUT OF MY FACE."
What kind of business did you say you were in?
__________________
St. QuickSilver: Patron Saint of Thermometers.
  #10  
Old 05-22-2018, 09:54 AM
filmore filmore is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Posts: 3,713
I'm not sure it was a "scam" exactly. That is, I don't think he was lying about what the money was going to be used for. It sounds like he really did want you to put some gas in his tank, so it's not like he's going to take your cash and split. But the money he saved on gas means he doesn't have to take cash out of his pocket to buy gas. But he also might not have much cash anyway. Anything he can save on gas is something he can spend on some other expenses. For a lot of people who live paycheck-to-paycheck on the edge of homelessness, each dollar they save can mean a lot. So maybe the money he saved by having strangers pay for his gas means he can pay his rent that month.

This is in contrast to many of the panhandlers who hold up a sign at an offramp saying they need gas money. I'm pretty sure that's a lie (do they even have a car?), but they are likewise trying to raise money to pay for whatever daily expenses they have. I would qualify that as a scam since they are lying about what the money will be used for.

Last edited by filmore; 05-22-2018 at 09:58 AM.
  #11  
Old 05-22-2018, 10:14 AM
Calatin Calatin is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 1,307
Chalk me up in the "not sure how this is a scam" camp.

If he was asking for gas, then I'd have walked to the pump, swiped my card, and put a few gallons in there. At the very least, they were being disingenuous as to the need, but it's not like they could've used that gas to buy drugs or alcohol or anything.

Also, IMHO that'd be an overly elaborate con, involving an old woman and a child, all for $6 worth of gas. Not saying that you should've fueled him up, but I don't think you missed being the mark of an elaborate ruse.

That being said, I've walked by beggars in front of a 7-11 who've asked me for money so they can buy food. More than once, when I came out with a sandwich in hand for them, they've thrown it back at me. Apparently, the "food" they wanted could be found in a long aluminum can.

So, yeah, I don't really give money to beggars anymore.
  #12  
Old 05-22-2018, 10:21 AM
jtur88 jtur88 is online now
Guest
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: Cebu, Philippines
Posts: 14,270
A couple of bucks for gas is a small price to pay for a good night's sleep. Instead of, like the OP, lying awake at night wondering if you did the right thing.

Panhandling is a job, with poor working conditions and even worse pay, but it is more honest and respectable than working at Rent-a-Center or a pay-day loan office, or working the phones in a scam robocall office, or selling used cars you know are defective, or a million other legal ripoffs hiding bedhind decedptive disclosures..
  #13  
Old 05-22-2018, 10:21 AM
txjim txjim is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Mar 2014
Posts: 204
I've been approached several times at the gas pump. First time, I handed over a few dollars which would have been enough for the man to get home (if his story was correct.) Second time, the store clerk came out as I was about to hand over some money and stated that the man had been there for a couple hours and was told to leave several times. Skip a few times to the last instance where I told the man who needed gas and groceries for his family that I believed he would take the money to buy beer/cigarettes. After assurances, I ended up giving him a $20 and he promptly went into the store and bought cigarettes (saw that through the window.)

I know that many threads have discussed the topic of giving money to panhandlers and whether it was helpful or just enabling the purchase of alcohol or drugs with, IIRC. I've always held the opinion that any money given to a charity will have a certain percentage of fraud associated with it through internal or external theft, fraud or whatever. My intention is to support the charities that offer the lowest possibility of abuse. As an example, our local food bank no doubt distributes items to people without real need. They are, however, in a much better position than I am to understand how to best distribute charity.

When I am approached at gas stations or see panhandlers at intersections, I know that some may truly be in need but the potential for fraud is higher than my personal acceptable levels.

Actually, I prefer a program that is being introduced by the city of Fort Worth that encourages alternate ways of helping homeless.
  #14  
Old 05-22-2018, 10:21 AM
Velocity Velocity is online now
Guest
 
Join Date: Jun 2014
Posts: 11,576
May I ask - for/from the perspective of a beggar, what are they supposed to do, if they truly need money?

Ask for money? Shot down.
  #15  
Old 05-22-2018, 10:22 AM
Shodan Shodan is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2000
Location: Milky Way Galaxy
Posts: 36,664
Quote:
Originally Posted by QuickSilver View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by DCnDC
I've told more than a few very insistent beggars that "The only thing I'm giving away for free today is a knife to the face, so if you don't want one of those, GET THE FUCK OUT OF MY FACE."
What kind of business did you say you were in?
Customer service at Verizon.

Regards,
Shodan
  #16  
Old 05-22-2018, 10:28 AM
carnivorousplant carnivorousplant is online now
KB not found. Press any key
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2000
Location: Central Arkansas
Posts: 56,204
Quote:
Originally Posted by Shodan View Post
Customer service at Verizon.

Regards,
Shodan
  #17  
Old 05-22-2018, 10:28 AM
Czarcasm Czarcasm is offline
Charter Member
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Apr 1999
Location: Portland, OR
Posts: 55,997
I've bought many a meal/drink/snack for a stranger and have never had it refused, let alone thrown back at me. As for giving money, I don't usually give away my own money-I pass along all the money I have ever found in the couch and on the ground.
  #18  
Old 05-22-2018, 10:32 AM
QuickSilver QuickSilver is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Mar 2000
Posts: 17,489
Quote:
Originally Posted by Czarcasm View Post
I've bought many a meal/drink/snack for a stranger and have never had it refused, let alone thrown back at me. As for giving money, I don't usually give away my own money-I pass along all the money I have ever found in the couch and on the ground.
Whose moneys are in your couch, or are do you go around fondling other people's furniture?
__________________
St. QuickSilver: Patron Saint of Thermometers.
  #19  
Old 05-22-2018, 10:35 AM
Vinyl Turnip Vinyl Turnip is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2002
Posts: 19,346
Quote:
Originally Posted by Czarcasm View Post
Why just say no, when you can be ethnically offensive at the same time?
On which offended ethnicity's behalf are you speaking?
  #20  
Old 05-22-2018, 10:36 AM
Czarcasm Czarcasm is offline
Charter Member
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Apr 1999
Location: Portland, OR
Posts: 55,997
Quote:
Originally Posted by QuickSilver View Post
Whose moneys are in your couch, or are do you go around fondling other people's furniture?
Some of the money may be mine(I'm not the only person living in my house) but, if it is mine, it's still no great loss to pass it along.
  #21  
Old 05-22-2018, 10:38 AM
Gary T Gary T is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: KCMO
Posts: 11,213
A woman came by my shop (auto repair) and said she needed money for gas because her car had run out. I had a gas can with a couple of gallons in it and offered to put it in her car, which she said was two blocks away. We headed out and after a walking half a block she waved me off and went on. It's a virtual certainty she didn't have a car.

A young man who had shoveled snow off our walk and had come in for a cup of cocoa showed up a few weeks later at night saying his aunt was desperate for her medicine and asked for ten dollars. I offered to go with him to the pharmacy and buy the medicine. When it was clear I wasn't going to put cash in his hand he left.

I've learned that the more ornate the story, the more certain you can be that it's a lie. Many panhandlers have developed spiels full of details that are carefully crafted to elicit sympathy and give their request an air of legitimacy/acceptability (i.e., they won't be buying booze or drugs). Those who truly have a basic need know where to get help without bothering people on the street.
  #22  
Old 05-22-2018, 10:39 AM
ISiddiqui ISiddiqui is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: May 2002
Location: Decatur, Georgia, USA
Posts: 6,292
An easy way to make sure the money is to be used for gas (if that is what you are concerned about) is to have the guy pull the silver SUV up to a pump and then go inside to the cashier and put the $5 on pump X.
  #23  
Old 05-22-2018, 10:43 AM
FairyChatMom FairyChatMom is offline
I'm nice, dammit!
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2000
Location: Southern Merrylande
Posts: 39,188
Quote:
Originally Posted by jtur88 View Post
<snip> Instead of, like the OP, lying awake at night wondering if you did the right thing.
For the record, I didn't lie awake. In fact, a few minutes after I was back on the road, my mind was again occupied by thoughts of the family situation I was dealing with. I'm not sure what brought it back to mind this morning - probably the thread about $50 worth of pizza.
  #24  
Old 05-22-2018, 10:44 AM
QuickSilver QuickSilver is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Mar 2000
Posts: 17,489
Quote:
Originally Posted by Czarcasm View Post
Some of the money may be mine(I'm not the only person living in my house) but, if it is mine, it's still no great loss to pass it along.
It's not funny when you're not inferring what I'm implying.
__________________
St. QuickSilver: Patron Saint of Thermometers.
  #25  
Old 05-22-2018, 10:50 AM
muldoonthief muldoonthief is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: North of Boston
Posts: 10,258
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gary T View Post
A woman came by my shop (auto repair) and said she needed money for gas because her car had run out. I had a gas can with a couple of gallons in it and offered to put it in her car, which she said was two blocks away. We headed out and after a walking half a block she waved me off and went on. It's a virtual certainty she didn't have a car.
I had to laugh at that one. If she didn't actually want gas, but just cash, you'd think an auto shop would be the last place to go, since they're very likely to be able to provide gas.
  #26  
Old 05-22-2018, 10:51 AM
xizor xizor is offline
Member
 
Join Date: May 2000
Location: Nashville, TN
Posts: 5,009
Quote:
Originally Posted by Omar Little View Post
I would have had him pull his SUV over to the pump I was at, and would have put a couple of gallons into his car. I fail to see the scam here unless, he wasn't amenable to that.
I used this exact line the one time I was approached at a gas pump. The lady wandered away and did not come back.

The most recent approach was someone who hit me up while we were in Walmart. When I declined I was berated for "buying all that stuff but can't help a brother out". I did not appreciate that parting shot and felt more anger than anything after that.
__________________
You were pumping iron while I was pumping irony - Robert Plant
  #27  
Old 05-22-2018, 11:06 AM
Czarcasm Czarcasm is offline
Charter Member
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Apr 1999
Location: Portland, OR
Posts: 55,997
Quote:
Originally Posted by QuickSilver View Post
It's not funny when you're not inferring what I'm implying.
If anybody is going to make a fool of me, it will be me...as evidenced by my posts on the message board.
  #28  
Old 05-22-2018, 11:14 AM
Jasmine Jasmine is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 1999
Location: Chicagoland
Posts: 801
Quote:
Originally Posted by FairyChatMom View Post
Maybe if he was driving an old piece of crap an looked less well-fed and well-dressed, I might have been more inclined to believe that he was a traveler in distress. Maybe I completely misjudged him. But I don't think so.
I can relate to that. Once, I had a young guy come up to my window and ask for money. He was healthy looking, well dressed and groomed, had a pack of cigarettes in his shirt pocket, and had a diamond stud in his left ear. He must of been REALLY good at panhandling. LOL
__________________
"The greatest obstacle to discovery is not ignorance -- it is the illusion of knowledge."
--Daniel J Boorstin
  #29  
Old 05-22-2018, 11:17 AM
MoonMoon MoonMoon is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 966
Quote:
Originally Posted by ISiddiqui View Post
An easy way to make sure the money is to be used for gas (if that is what you are concerned about) is to have the guy pull the silver SUV up to a pump and then go inside to the cashier and put the $5 on pump X.
Yeah, I wouldn't walk over to their vehicle with my card (especially if the SUV were between the pump and the store), but if they legitimately need gas, this approach works best.
  #30  
Old 05-22-2018, 11:45 AM
The Other Waldo Pepper The Other Waldo Pepper is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Posts: 15,313
Quote:
Originally Posted by senoy View Post
Yes, it is very likely a scam. At the same time, I'm a religious person and we're taught that it's our duty to give and then it's their problem if they misuse it.

I once had an older woman look me over in trying-to-place-me fashion. I know you, she said, and then she paused and then it was like a light of recognition clicked on for her, and she asked where I went to church.

This was, of course, all the lead-up to then asking me to spare a dollar.
  #31  
Old 05-22-2018, 12:01 PM
Typo Negative Typo Negative is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Mar 2000
Location: 7th Level of Hell, Ca
Posts: 16,732
I don't mind people panhandling.

I mind the bullshit story. I once had to cut off a guy in mid sentence because it had ran too long.

Someone tells me that they have run out of gas and need to get back to a town that's an hour drive here, well then I got questions. You weren't watching your gas gauge? You left home for a trip and had no money on you? No credit or atm card? You got no friends to call? Then you deserve to be stranded. Fuck off.

But the guy\girl with a sign on the off-ramp? Yeah, I got a buck for them.
__________________
"God hates Facts"

- seen on a bumper sticker in Sacramento Ca
  #32  
Old 05-22-2018, 12:09 PM
control-z control-z is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: Virginia
Posts: 12,287
It's a common scam. They want money, they don't want gas. There is always a sob story involving kids or sick people. I got accosted once going into Lowes, I told the lady "Sorry, but no" and and I kept walking. I turned back and said back to her "Good luck with your scam", which in retrospect was a bad idea if she saw what car I got out of!
  #33  
Old 05-22-2018, 12:14 PM
Living Well Is Best Revenge Living Well Is Best Revenge is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: Memphis, TN
Posts: 3,325
Quote:
Originally Posted by Omar Little View Post
I would have had him pull his SUV over to the pump I was at, and would have put a couple of gallons into his car. I fail to see the scam here unless, he wasn't amenable to that.

Many people that are on the edge of destitute of poverty own SUV's and have smart phones. They have misplaced priorities, which is partly why they are on the edge of being destitute.
I've done this before and no one has ever taken me up on it. They wanted the cash.
  #34  
Old 05-22-2018, 12:47 PM
simster simster is online now
Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Posts: 10,528
I was at a walmart parking lot - lady comes up sobbing, big story of abuse, just needs some gas money to get to her sisters, etc.... I said sure - lets go over to the gas station.

Cost me 1.12 - but she had a full tank of gas to get on down the road with.

She was not happy.

I've been caught by 2 beggers that made me feel like they were legit (they clearly weren't). I am now in the 'I don't carry cash for anyone' mindset. Those that hold cards on the corners of intersections get nothing either.
  #35  
Old 05-22-2018, 12:48 PM
carnivorousplant carnivorousplant is online now
KB not found. Press any key
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2000
Location: Central Arkansas
Posts: 56,204
I am a sap. Rabbi Moses ben Maimon told us that if we gave money to ten beggars and nine were lying to us, we have done a good thing.

Last edited by carnivorousplant; 05-22-2018 at 12:48 PM.
  #36  
Old 05-22-2018, 03:16 PM
Alley Dweller Alley Dweller is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 3,844
Quote:
Originally Posted by ISiddiqui View Post
An easy way to make sure the money is to be used for gas (if that is what you are concerned about) is to have the guy pull the silver SUV up to a pump and then go inside to the cashier and put the $5 on pump X.
Unless you wait for him to finish pumping gas, he'll pump 25 cents worth and go in and get his change.

If you pre-pay a cashier for gas, but don't actually use that much gas, they will give you the difference back.
  #37  
Old 05-22-2018, 03:21 PM
simster simster is online now
Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Posts: 10,528
Quote:
Originally Posted by Alley Dweller View Post
Unless you wait for him to finish pumping gas, he'll pump 25 cents worth and go in and get his change.

If you pre-pay a cashier for gas, but don't actually use that much gas, they will give you the difference back.
pay at the pump and I pump the gas - you not getting squat.

of course, one of these days they'll have a hidden 100 gallon tank and I'll be royally screwed.
  #38  
Old 05-22-2018, 03:31 PM
Voyager Voyager is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: Deep Space
Posts: 43,290
Quote:
Originally Posted by Omar Little View Post
I would have had him pull his SUV over to the pump I was at, and would have put a couple of gallons into his car. I fail to see the scam here unless, he wasn't amenable to that.
Which reminds me of the Marx Brothers movie where a panhandler came up to Harpo and asked for a nickel for a cup of coffee.
Harpo pulled a cup of coffee out of his pocket.
  #39  
Old 05-22-2018, 03:38 PM
HMS Irruncible HMS Irruncible is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 7,196
I have heard the old 'complicated transportation problem' scam enough times to know it's a scam. I never pulled out my wallet to see how it ends.
  #40  
Old 05-22-2018, 03:43 PM
Ludovic Ludovic is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2000
Location: America's Wing
Posts: 28,182
Quote:
Originally Posted by simster View Post
pay at the pump and I pump the gas - you not getting squat.

of course, one of these days they'll have a hidden 100 gallon tank and I'll be royally screwed.
Right, I think that the small percentage of times that the scammer accepts the gas is when they actually do need some gas, since they'll need gas anyway eventually. The same scammers might occasionally accept the gas even if most of the time they walk away.

Same thing probably goes for panhandlers asking for food money. They need to eat some time so might occasionally accept some.
  #41  
Old 05-22-2018, 03:52 PM
pool pool is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: Inside
Posts: 3,881
Before I had children I was a lot more likely to give money to random beggars or homeless people, or buy them groceries. I'm more hard up for money at the moment and I figure any money I give some stranger is coming out of the mouths of my children, but I have many times in the past helped people out. One time though I was at a gas station filling up my car at the time a 10 year old, Hyundai that constantly broke down, and a well dressed guy in a newer 5 series BMW gave me a sob story and asked me for gas money. I just glanced from my car, to his, and back again and responded with a resounding "NO"!
__________________
"You can do anything you set your mind to...But money helps"
  #42  
Old 05-22-2018, 04:02 PM
teela brown teela brown is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Apr 2000
Location: Almost Silicon Valley
Posts: 9,069
I've told this story before.

I was filling up at a gas station, and there was a woman talking on the station's pay phone a few feet away (this was back when there were pay phones!). She was having a sobbing conversation with someone, and saying "I just need some food and a place to sleep overnight!". Then she hung up the phone, crying, and looked over at me.

My spidey sense was tingling, so I finished filling my tank, and then pulled my car over to the other side of the gas station and went inside to buy a bottle of water. When I came out, another customer was at the same gas pump, and the woman was back on the phone and going through the same script.

I finally got it - she was grifting the customers of the gas station. It was a variant on the "I need gas so I can get my kids back home" scam.
  #43  
Old 05-22-2018, 04:27 PM
tim-n-va tim-n-va is online now
Guest
 
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 2,132
My after-the-fact-response, maybe Ill actually use it someday:
I have three brothers and one sister below the poverty level. If I dont help them what makes you think Ill help you?
  #44  
Old 05-22-2018, 05:03 PM
FoieGrasIsEvil FoieGrasIsEvil is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Land of Cheese Coneys
Posts: 17,212
You know whom it is fun to give money to on the street though? Buskers. I have seen some pretty amazing street musicians that really earned their rumpled 1's and quarters by playing like a mother.

I also really like the guys that sit in the skyway after Bengals games, drumming their hearts out. There are some pretty impressive 5 gallon bucket ensembles out there!



Back to the OP, I have had that story a few times. The only time someone actually accepted the offer of gas with me filling it up I put like $15 into his tank, ostensibly to go to a job interview. He was well dressed.
__________________
Posting From Above The Browns
  #45  
Old 05-22-2018, 05:56 PM
GusNSpot GusNSpot is online now
Member
 
Join Date: Mar 1999
Location: N/W Arkansas
Posts: 8,390
Quote:
Originally Posted by QuickSilver View Post
Whose moneys are in your couch, or are do you go around fondling other people's furniture?
*** snerk *****
  #46  
Old 05-22-2018, 06:45 PM
Nawth Chucka Nawth Chucka is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: Whites elevated; UT
Posts: 5,301
Quote:
Originally Posted by FairyChatMom View Post
When I was in Ocala, Florida this past weekend, I was approached at the gas pump by a young man with a sob story about having his grandmother and his son in the "silver SUV over there" and he needed a couple of gallons of gas to get to Gainesville to see his other son. He insisted he wasn't asking for money, but for some gas. When I declined, I heard him give the same story to at least 2 others filling their cars.

First thing that came to mind was "SCAM" - his sob story, his demeanor, the very expensive phone in his hand - was I really to believe that between him and his grandmother they didn't have $5 to put a couple of gallons of gas into his SUV? Maybe if he was driving an old piece of crap an looked less well-fed and well-dressed, I might have been more inclined to believe that he was a traveler in distress. Maybe I completely misjudged him. But I don't think so.

In any event, I carry very little cash and I was on a rather expensive trip to help out my own family, so every time I stopped for gas, it was a few more dollars than I'd budgeted for. I'm pretty trusting and gullible most of the time, but there's something about being approached at a gas station...

Was I a cold-hearted bitch or a sensible, cautious traveler wary of strangers? Have you had to deal with similar scenarios?
I had a similar thing happen at a gas station in Macon, GA; as I'm getting gas a cleanly dressed man walks up to me w/ a small gas can and tells me his car's run out of gas just around the corner (gestures toward the street) w/ his family in it. He has no money, his bank card won't work - all this information comes at me quickly and w/ no change in expression as I stare at him silently. All I have to do, he says, is put gas right in the can, he doesn't want money! Not asking for money! All he needs is a little gas, I can give it to him as I fill up.
I told him he should ask the attendant for help if he's in dire straits, but that I'm not going to help him. Lots of disbelief (the facial expressions come out now) that I won't do it, that I should believe him, that it's not a big deal for him to ask me.
When he sees I'm not buying it, he tells me I'm a bad Christian and when I don't respond to that he steps over to the next set of pumps, going around to the opposite side but I can hear him start his spiel.
Maybe he'll ask for cash once he gets the gas? Maybe he'll ask for a ride to his car and rob me? Who knows, but as a woman who was alone (and on her lunch hour) I wasn't sticking around to find out.
I had no doubt he was hustling; from the fast, set and detailed patter, to insulting my Christianity as a last-ditch shame tactic I felt this was a thing he'd done a lot.
  #47  
Old 05-22-2018, 06:57 PM
seal_cleaner seal_cleaner is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Mar 2001
Location: Northwest Arkansas
Posts: 1,981
I give money to pandhandlers occasionally, just going on gut instinct. I can afford it. Similar - a few weeks ago I was approached by a teenager who said, “I just got out of jail and I need a ride home. I lost my phone and wallet.” I gave him a ride home (about 3 miles).
  #48  
Old 05-22-2018, 06:58 PM
begbert2 begbert2 is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Idaho
Posts: 10,205
I help nothing and nobody, unless I already know them well. But then again, I am an asshole.
  #49  
Old 05-22-2018, 06:59 PM
Ulf the Unwashed Ulf the Unwashed is online now
Guest
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Posts: 2,871
Quote:
Originally Posted by The Other Waldo Pepper View Post
I once had an older woman look me over in trying-to-place-me fashion. I know you, she said, and then she paused and then it was like a light of recognition clicked on for her, and she asked where I went to church.

This was, of course, all the lead-up to then asking me to spare a dollar.
I once got You look familiar...are you a retired actor or something?

I was amused. But not enough to give her the five bucks she (inevitably) requested a little later on in the conversation.
  #50  
Old 05-22-2018, 07:06 PM
jtur88 jtur88 is online now
Guest
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: Cebu, Philippines
Posts: 14,270
Quote:
Originally Posted by FairyChatMom View Post
For the record, I didn't lie awake. In fact, a few minutes after I was back on the road, my mind was again occupied by thoughts of the family situation I was dealing with. I'm not sure what brought it back to mind this morning - probably the thread about $50 worth of pizza.
It worried you enough that you started this thread, and to this day, it still bothes you. Next time, give the guy a few bucks and consider it a part of your annual charitable donations.

Last edited by jtur88; 05-22-2018 at 07:10 PM.
Reply

Bookmarks

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 09:35 PM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2018, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.

Send questions for Cecil Adams to: cecil@straightdope.com

Send comments about this website to: webmaster@straightdope.com

Terms of Use / Privacy Policy

Advertise on the Straight Dope!
(Your direct line to thousands of the smartest, hippest people on the planet, plus a few total dipsticks.)

Publishers - interested in subscribing to the Straight Dope?
Write to: sdsubscriptions@chicagoreader.com.

Copyright 2018 STM Reader, LLC.

 
Copyright © 2017