Tuesday, November 06, 2018

What Would You Do?

Pineapple flavored pretzels...no we did not buy any.

Today is Election Day and much of our County is shut down for voting. I hired a carpet cleaning company (for the first time in many years as I usually do it on my own) to come clean some area rugs and a few wall-to-wall carpets and they scheduled this day! I forgot to ask the two huge black men who came if they had found time to vote. I swear one was football build and about 6.5 feet tall with lovely dreadlocks falling onto this shoulders.  They could have moved all the furniture without a sigh. They had to be Blue voters!

Anyway, this post is not about them or about how the house smells a little like a dog caught in the rain right now.

I had not slept well last night worrying about not getting the furniture moved before they arrived. I should have played the helpless gray-haired lady, because they came a half hour late and I was exhausted. Once they left I ate a quick lunch and turned on fans in the rooms to help with the drying and retreated to my bedroom where the carpets were dry and soon I felt sleepy and had drifted into a deep restful sleep.

After a half hour, the phone rang and I put the pillow over my head and ignored it. Then ten minutes later the doorbell rang. I had not closed our gate and wondered if the carpet cleaners had forgotten something so I gave up on the nap.

I opened the door to find a thin white teenage boy standing near his bike in the driveway. When I ask if I could help him he explained he was looking for some type of work (like laying sod? he suggested) so that he could make some money. His explanation was that his mother told him to get some money to get some food for the house. He worked this into the conversation a couple of times.

I am an old fart but not a soft fart and for some reason I was leery of just handing him some money. I told him it was late fall and we had no yard work to do and all the wood for the rack had been split and filled, as it had.  I asked for his name and number and he handed my a torn piece of paper onto which he had written Clyde and a phone number.  When I asked where he lived he said it was down our main road and into another, etc. about a mile from here.

I told him I would ask my husband if he had any chores to be done and bid him adieu.  Maybe he was really looking for work for food.  We are always taking fresh produce to the food pantry, although there is nothing fresh this late in the fall.  I doubt we will have something for him...and I am not sure that I feel safe in helping him.

As an addendum he did pull out a small box with a heart-shaped necklace that he said his mother would let him sell for half price.  There was a sticker with $100 in the bottom  corner.

Am I just a cynic?  What would you do?


  1. I have disabled Google+ comments, which means I can now comment, but it also means all prior comments are now hidden. This is such an experiment in patience.

  2. It sounds a bit suss. You should have had the big guy move the furniture and play the helpless little lady.

  3. Taking his name and number was probably appropriate.

    As an aside, I don't prefer pretzels of any kind or flavor. :)

  4. I would have probably given him a few bucks and felt snookered for the rest of the day.

  5. That does sound just a bit suspicious. But you did the right thing: take his number and don't give him any money. Congrats, though, on getting your carpets all cleaned! :-)

  6. You are not being a cynic. Around here they bus them in as crews. If he really was a boy, he should have been in school too. I'm worse than you.
    I can now leave a note on your entry. Oh Hurrah! What did you change?

    1. I checked the criteria to remove Google+ commenters and I logged out and logged back in as Blogger...so even I can reply and comment again!!

  7. Boy this is a tough question. I think you did well. I would probably do one thing, and then wish I did something else. When I dropped my kids off at their schools in the city, I was always faced with homeless people asking for money. I gave weekly to one man. Until a friend said that she wondered how he was getting all his booze and sitting at the local park drinking. So I went to the mall, bought him a coat, gloves, hat, shirt and also some food. I offered it to him and he refused! Then he asked my toddler (standing with me) if he could have her dollar (that a little old lady at church gave, and she was holding it). I know friends that believe in giving to the local churches who do hand out food instead. Another would offer to take the person to the local mcdonald's for a meal (they usually refuse). But a kid asking...has me wondering what I would do. I would hope I would just give money and not worry if it was bonifide. Andrea

  8. I would probably ask to speak to his mother. I would want to check out his story. If legit, I would help.

  9. I agree with Marie - and perhaps if he lived close by as he said, I'd have visited the neighborhood. I've been scammed a couple of times and felt foolish afterwards, but I guess I'm willing to risk it again on the off chance that I might really be helping someone.

  10. My dad was a preacher so we had lots of people come to our door seeking help. One day Dad was gone and a man came to the front door. He mumbled, "name Frank..hungry." I turned him away and my sister had a fit. She wanted to give him money. About an hour later someone came to our side door. It was Frank but he had changed his had and said, "Name Carl...hungry".

  11. I'd be suspicious and the jewelry would add to my suspicions. Maybe have some food on hand that you could give someone as if that's the issue, food would be what he wanted and could not be misused. hopefully. When I was in 5th grade, a boy who liked me stole his grandma's jewelry to give me. She got it back, of course, when we found out.


Take your time...take a deep breath...then hit me with your best shot.