Wednesday, January 28, 2009


I am at a loss for a title for the blog post today. Everything that comes to mind is too tacky.

We will be moving next month. I can't tell you how excited I am at the prospect. Right now we live next to a church, which is a significant con.

Before I begin my tirade, let me first say that I do not mind helping those in need. In fact, I enjoy it. "Just a cup of water," right?


Some people have serious nerve. Living next to a church means that every drug addict, alcoholic, and professional beggar stops by the house, wanting to know where the pastor is and if they can have some money. I have had people come by who were in genuine need. Those people are always humbled by the experience of having to ask for help. They will take only what is absolutely needed. I once even had a man who lost his home to arson ask for a scrap of carpet that was going to be thrown away because he could use it as a rug. I would do anything for those people. The former? Not so much.

I used to think it was just limited to this part of the country I live in, but I am increasingly deciding that there is a large population of people who think they are owed something, and get very demanding if they can't have that something exactly when and how they think they should.

Here's a little tip to the professional beggars (not that they would be reading this blog): You will get a lot more out of people when you are humble and not demanding. Try "please" and "thank you," for starters.

Do not pull up in my driveway on a Saturday morning and honk your horn. I do not run a drive-through service, and I will not come to your car when you are perfectly capable of walking to my door and knocking.

If I tell you that the church does not provide gas money, do not argue with me. I don't have it to give to you, either. When you ask for money for food, do not turn down the food from the pantry. I will remember when you come back and won't offer the food that time.

Don't tell me you are from out of town and need money to get to Florida. All I have to do is look at your license plate to know that you live in the county.

Don't bring your kids when you are begging for money. I am not stupid enough to think that you will spend the money on formula when I can smell the alcohol on your breath.

Do not push past me into my house. I do carry a gun.

I can't help you get your crazy check.

I have a five-year-old son, and there is no way I am going to drive you anywhere if it means putting you in the car with the two of us.

Do not ask me for the preacher's phone number, especially not after you've called him the Antichrist. I'm not telling you where he lives, either.

When I say that the benevolence house is open on Tuesdays from 9-11 am, do not ask me to make a special call and have it opened for you. I do not have keys to it and I do not have that contact information. If you tell me that you knew what time it was open, but just "couldn't make it," I am even less likely to want to help you.

Arguing with me will get you nowhere. I can't give you what I don't have, and I don't know anyone who can help you. Do not huff up, do not yell at me, and do not come back.


*sigh* I sometimes wish I wasn't so jaded. I know that God looks at our intent, and not the actual outcome, when we are extending benevolence to others. But after almost ten years of dealing with people who abuse the system (and all the above have actually happened to me at least once), it's hard not to be cynical.

No, I will not miss it one bit.


AUsome mom said...

Understood. I'll be happy for you when you get moved. Hope school is going well.

AUsome mom said...

Hey girl - I tagged you. Go check it out when you get a chance:

Have a great week!