A month or so ago, I was walking down a street and a young man approached me asking for money for a meal. He was asking me for twenty dollars. I gave him fifteen. He seemed somehow disappointed, but I told him it was cutting into my money for smokes. I walked with him to my bank to get the money (he stayed outside), with him low-key trying to haggle and bumming cigarettes. When it was done, he shook my hand and implied that I was a good man for feeding a homeless person. I later told my mom about this, and she said she'd heard of people in the area pretending to be homeless.
Was this guy just a particularly nitpicking homeless person, or was he a fraud? If the latter case is correct, I am definitely losing faith in humanity.
10-16-2019, 05:49 AM
I am not sure... but, I am so sorry if you got taken advantage of - I have had similar things happen to me, and it made me feel incredibly sad and violated. Sometimes, it helped me to consider that it still went to someone in need. Their need may just not be readily visible though (i.e. actual homelessness), rather one internal. Kindness is still kindness.
10-16-2019, 06:35 AM
Yeah, if person is begging for 20 $ and is disappointed with 15 $ then person unlikely was in need of money. Person that is in desperate need of money, would likely take even 1 $ and not grumble, as at least they can buy something with it and are closer to whatever humble goal they have in mind. There is a good chance you got punked, assuming what you've said is accurate depiction of the situation.
That said, opportunistic and grumpy smoking beggar, isn't outside realm of possibility.
What can be said, begging can be quite profitable, if you know how to manipulate people into giving you a money. You can also avoid having to buy own cigarettes and food. You should definitively lose hope in humanity, never expect people to pursue anything outside of their own interest. Once you realize, accept it and act in accordance to that, you won't get punked as much at least.
10-16-2019, 09:45 AM
If I were begging for money, $15.00 seems like a godsend, to me.
Like a miracle.
I can't quite grasp in my mind (figure out) why this person was disappointed in the $5.00 difference. Personally, and that is the only way I can think about this -- sorry! -- I would have taken the $15.00 and then emphatically thanked you over and over again. $15.00 would have fed me many meals from McDonalds $1, $2, $3 value meals menu. Hey, when I have nothing, I'll eat french fries (or something else)over and over and get a large coffee for $1.00. Poor is poor.
I have never..... never ever ..... and I've lived many, many years..... had someone come up to me and ask for so much money. NEVER. Usually it is "Do you have any money to spare?" -- I once had a guy ask me for money to get a large soda, which would have been $2.00 tops.
So that is the major thing about this whole story, for me, the amount of money..... makes me curious about them now. What is their story and why...? Why why why?
Next, once I give the money and the person walks off, I know full and well that my coins or dollar bills might be spent for food, drugs or booze, or something else like money for a friend or food for a pet. I know that might happen. I'm not hurt or worried by that at all. Well, I hope they don't buy drugs or booze, I hope they buy food, because that doesn't seem to be breaking any laws to me. I hope they don't use the money I gave them, to fund a drug habit, but I have no control over that, and I hope they buy food if they are hungry. I'd hate to give money, they buy drugs, then die from my funding of their drug habit. No one comes to me and asks for drug money, everyone asks for food money. I hope that is what they need it for but who knows for sure...
I think I would have asked "Why so much money Dude .... damn son! I don't have that much myself!" Good for you that you can spare 15.00. I ain't got it but that is my own situation to deal with. :tongue:
10-16-2019, 10:22 AM
Usually these type of people are druggies. They'd steal your phone too to sell for money, if you're unlucky.
However, there are some who are genuinely homeless and hungry. I don't mind spending money to feed people. Food is something I'm perfectly fine being generous for as long as I have enough to spare.
10-16-2019, 11:00 AM
Don't look to homeless people for faith in humanity.
Purely funny story: I was walking to work once and I keep a silver ounce Britannia in my pocket because I like to flip it along my fingers when I'm thinking.
Homeless Guy: You got any change mate?
Me: *rifles through pockets - holds up silver britannia thinking obviously he knows he can't buy ciggies with this* I've only got this mate.
Homeless Guy: Can I have it?
Me: *He didn't realise he can't use this in most shops...* No.
Homeless Guy: Why not?
Me: Because it's mine.
And then I walked off. Property, what an odd existential conversation about it to have at 8am.
10-16-2019, 11:57 AM
To assume that people on the street asking for money are panhandlers and are to be avoided is the best way to insure your safety and well being.
Are there exceptions out there? Maybe. But studies have shown that encouraging panhandlers ultimately leads to areas of increased criminal activity like robbery at gun point.
The normal activity of people in public is not to ask for an amount of money from strangers. So engage them at your own risk.
10-16-2019, 12:40 PM
I live in a city that's full of people pretending to be homeless for money, so from your guy's demeanour it sounds like yeah, your guy might have been a fake. For one, twenty dollars is a lot to ask for, people who are genuinely homeless tend to be more understanding as they know that the more they ask for the less likely they are to get it, they usually just ask for whatever people can spare and save it all up. I find they're often grateful that you'd even stop to listen to their request rather than just ignore them (people don't realise how much it hurts to just be that dirty old man on the street corner everyone stays away from), so if they're miffed about not you not giving what they want it can be a red flag. To homeless people even a dollar makes a genuine difference. A meal doesn't cost $20. When you live on the street you just buy whatever you can afford, a $4 sandwich is a meal when you're homeless. Following you to your bank is the same behaviour a lot of our fakers have, it's extremely pushy. Sorry this happened to you, it's aggravating as hell when someone takes advantage of kindness. And it affects the people who're actually homeless and in need of help, no-one knows who to trust. It's messed up.
Just because it's topical, here's a pretty cathartic article about one fake homeless guy from my city center, I had to deal with him a lot, he used to hang around the bus station and the ATMs and he'd be really rude about asking for money, if it looked like you were about to say no he'd just blank you and move on to the next person in sight. Apparently he also used to follow old people to the ATM and intimidate them for money, guy was an asshole. If you suspect your man's a faker and it's illegal in your state it's probably worth getting the police involved.
Oh and here's another from the next town over, I used to see this guy all the time, had NO idea he was a fake, he looked really convincing.
10-16-2019, 02:57 PM
Welcome to society and this is a big problem in some Asian nations where westerners are pretending to be penniless only to freeload off the generosity of the locals mainly poor pensioners.
10-16-2019, 04:10 PM
Next time offer to buy him a meal. You’ll have your answer.