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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Feb 14 2012

The St. Valentine’s Day Bitters

You can identify all of the people who wish to be in love but currently are not by their ‘I hate Valentine’s Day’ posts on Facebook, the poor blighters. If they were happily single or just ambivalent, they wouldn’t have anything to say. How many posts have you seen from me on the topic of National Peanut Butter Day (January 24)?

Yeah, I know some of you, both in love and out, see it as a scam cooked up by greeting card manufacturers, but I feel no more compelled to do something I don’t want by Valentine’s Day than I feel constrained from doing something I do want by that whole, ‘forsaking all others’ part of our marriage vows.¬†Heather and I see it as simply an excuse to go buy something nice for each other, which we might normally do anyway. When you celebrate as many days as we do together (first date, first kiss, Hanukkah, Friday, 17 1/2th anniversary, National Peanut Butter Day), Valentine’s is just another opportunity to express being happily married.

It’s funny, and somehow very telling, that the Roman Catholic church has 25¬†patron saints of unhappy marriages, but only one saint of happy marriages (I’ll let you figure it out).

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