Mar 20 2013

Griftin’ and griftin’

“Excuse me, sir, but I’m from Atlanta, Georgia, and my ex-wife passed away and I’m on my way to Omaha, Nebraska to pick up my girls and I need some gas and they kicked me out of that gas station over there so if you could spare some gas….”

Look, buddy, I guess you think people out in the sticks are easy and gullible. It’s really pretty easy to spot a grifter:

  1. They call you ‘sir,’ –an appeal to pride.
  2. They have this impossibly terrible situation that involves the welfare of children, –an appeal to sympathy. My favorite is the one where the guy has run out of gas and he had to leave his kids in the car with the doors locked while he went to get some gas. My pastor’s favorite is the one where the guy came by the church looking for money to feed his kids–twice. The first time he claimed to have 5 kids, and the second time he claimed to have 3 kids. Apparently he used this ploy so much that he forgot who he used it on. When my pastor asked him what happened to the other 2 kids, and informed him that he had already tried this one–he didn’t want to talk about it anymore and left.
  3. They claim to want gas or food, but the fact is they really just want money.

So get back in your ginormous SUV with large chrome rims and low-profile tires and quit trying to bum money from a guy about to drive an hour to work in a 17 year old beat up Chrysler.

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Oct 17 2009

Alms for the poor

Back in the 60s my grampa, my dad, and my uncle used to drive to Kansas City to stay in an apartment and work all week, then drive back home to southern Missouri on the weekends. Dad said when they got back to the apartment, my uncle would get out an old can and say, in his most pitiful voice:

“Alms, alms for the poor!”

Dad and Grampa would laugh and throw change in his can.

Dad said they thought it was pretty funny–until the end of the month when my uncle had an extra $20.

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