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« Good Luck, Mark! | Main | Situation: Bloghostel »



I liked the solution of "I'll be in starbucks for four hours". It sort of puts his honesty on the table.
You were generous and honest, and he took advantage of that, although I suppose there is a slight possibility he was telling the truth, just couldn't get back.
Either way, it's good of you to think of others. I have lots of issues with panhandlers. I never know whether to give or not. It's probably better to give to a charity that helps the homeless. Who knows?


First of all this just shows what a good heart you have. Second of all i love Judaism and all its quirky answers to everyday problems. No shame in erring on side of goodness. Thanks for the update.

annabel lee

You're a very good person. Can a woman be a mensch? (Or would that be a "womensch"?) 'Cause you are.

writersbloc gal

you shouldn't feel foolish. you did a kind and charitable thing. it's on his conscience, if he has one... and the rest should work itself out. your kindness, that you shouldn't ever feel foolish about. not enough of it out there.


Nobody likes to be a chump. You weren't one however. You did a good thing despite knowing the likelihood it was a scam. A chump is someone who's suckered unknowingly. You're a good person, full stop.

Michael Loewinger

My grandmother was a victim of a similar scam. She didn't realize it until the next year when the same person tried it on here again. On the bright side, you probably benefitted and he probably didn't.


I hate being asked for money by strangers on the street too. Even if I have money, or not, I sure as hell don't feel comfortable pulling out my wallet in public and handing it out. Nor do I carry "spare change" around in a pocket (I'm a girl, what pockets are in my clothes?), and if I have spare change, I'm saving it for the laundry anyway.

Especially since I actually got manhandled by panhandlers (in little ol' Davis, CA, if you can believe it!) once, I just do NOT want to get close enough to them to give them money. But when I admit this stuff, people think I'm an asshole for not giving.


Ironically, I myself was (albeit temporarily) homeless when the panhandlers started grabbing me. They probably wouldn't have believed me if I'd told them I was in the same situation they were in.


the excuse i generally use is the one about the different levels of charity from the talmud, that the best kind of charity is when neither the giver nor the reciever knows the identity of the other. but it's not just a excuse...i firmly believe it to be true.

Some Loser

Along the lines of what Michael Loewinger posted I think the examination of this issue you did in your own mind is to you well worth the five spot. But if it happens again say "sorry not today" you've gained enough and to go through this again the marginal gain isnt there.

Barefoot Jewess

Coooool! I knew you were a soft touch! I'm actually touched by what you did.

When I was flush, I gave money to all and sundry- better to err on the side of being made a fool of, I figure, than to do someone dirt. I am sure I got taken advantage of more than once. Perhaps it's in the knowing it that makes us pause the next time?

Anyone who gives in the face of potential mortification is aces in my books! Go, Esther!


Well done.


Next time it will be a genuine need by a genuine person, so don't lose faith and don't become less charitable next time.

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