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Worse Than Telemarketers....panhandlers! Aaargh!

Sun Mar 17, 2002 1:13 pm

With a telemarketer, you can hang up the phone, but panhandlers-AARGH!!!! Last weekend I was approached 2 days in a row!! One at an I-HOP, for cryin' out loud. I've heard some good sob stories, but they usually want money for drugs. What happens if they get violent?

Your thoughts?
"We must accept finite disappointment, but never lose infinite hope." - Martin Luther King, Jr.
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RE: Worse Than Telemarketers....panhandlers! Aaargh!

Sun Mar 17, 2002 1:49 pm

I have a friend who gets original with them. One guy came up and told him Merry Christmas. He was just thinking "how nice of this man to say that to me," when the guy asked if he could borrow a few dollars. My friend told him, "Hey, man, I'll give you something and you don't even have to pay me back..." and then he ripped big fart. The guy said, "man you are gross, sick!" I wish I could have seen it.

Another time this same friend was approaced by a guy asking for some money. My friend told him, "Well, I'll give you a dollar or two if you'll show me your penis." The guy said, "Oh, come on, that's sick." My friend said, "Well, if I was hungry and needed money I'd be happy to do it..." So finally the guy did and my friend gave him a couple of dollars.
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RE: Worse Than Telemarketers....panhandlers! Aaargh!

Sun Mar 17, 2002 2:05 pm

Please tell me your friend was a female!

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RE: Worse Than Telemarketers....panhandlers! Aaargh!

Mon Mar 18, 2002 3:13 pm

I'd just ask them for money instead. Give it a shot
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RE: Worse Than Telemarketers....panhandlers! Aaargh!

Mon Mar 18, 2002 5:40 pm

We must have the nicest panhandlers here! They say "Spare change?" I say 'Sorry' and that is that. Sometimes if they do something I'll give them change. Once a guy was talking to his girlfriend who was begging across the street. He *skipped* across the street and asked me for change. I told him just for skipping, I'd give him two dollars. I have a few friends on the streets and I do know that sometimes the money does go to drugs or cigarettes, but sometimes it really does go to food.
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RE: Worse Than Telemarketers....panhandlers! Aaargh!

Mon Mar 18, 2002 10:22 pm

Panhandlers are a serious nuisance in my downtown, though they usually take 'no' for an answer and leave it at that.

Though I had one who gave me some back-talk:

"Hey, you got some change, sir?"


"You f***king liar! I can hear the change shaking in your pocket!"
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RE: Worse Than Telemarketers....panhandlers! Aaargh!

Tue Mar 19, 2002 12:52 am

About 8 years ago in the parking lot at Three Rivers Stadium, your basic bum stumbled up with his yellow eyes and asked for some money. I was always really good and gave when I could, so was going to give him a buck. I realized though that my wallet was not in my pocket. I remembered that I'd put it in the console in my car, got it and gave him a buck. He thanked me profusely. After the game, of course, my car was broken into and some stuff stolen, and you just know it was yelloweyes. There was a brand new Grand Cherokee on 1 side of me loaded up with tailgater stuff and a new BMW on the other side with a leather jacket on the seat. But he broke into mine.

I haven't given a dime since then.
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RE: Worse Than Telemarketers....panhandlers! Aaargh!

Tue Mar 19, 2002 1:05 am

This one time a freind and I had just been to a music concert in Amsterdam and were just heading back home when we decided to stop for a snack. We only got a coke and a muffin when this "happy-go-lucky" bum came up to my friend and asked if he could have a bit of his muffin? My friend turned a bit, frowned and said: "Im not opening it yet" and walked away!!! I killed myself laughing at the way he did it.

Another time a freind of mine was walking through town and a bum asked: "Have you any spare change?" and my friend stoped a second and replied: "Yes!" and kept walking!!!

Aer Lingus, Proud to be Irish.
Jan Mogren
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RE: Worse Than Telemarketers....panhandlers! Aaargh!

Tue Mar 19, 2002 3:28 am

you actually put your wallet back in your car after that???!!
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RE: Worse Than Telemarketers....panhandlers! Aaargh!

Tue Mar 19, 2002 3:51 am

Yes, panhandlers can be annoying, but there are a few things you ought to bear in mind:

About 80% of people living on the streets in any given city suffer either from some form of additiction, whether alcohol, or drug, or from some type of mental illness. Money and resources promised by successive governments both in the United States and Europe when insitutions were closed have never materialized, meaning politicians simply ignore the problem or propose solutions that are ineffective, or outright counterproductive.

It's very easy to dismiss them as just trying to get booze or drugs, and yes, giving money to them may be perpetuating a problem, but not doing anything at all also makes the problem worse. It can also display a lack of compassion as well as being condescending, insensitive and downright selfish. I am not suggesting that people give them money, however It is far better to give money to organizations that work directly with the homeless to get them off the streets and into treatment or lives that are productive.

Another facit of homelessness people don't like to think about is it can literally happen to anyone. Anyone here on this forum can wind up on the streets through no fault of their own. It very nearly happened to me. Therefore, before you stand in judgement, make a snide comment or whine about how obnoxious they are, picture yourself in that position and think what it feels like. Perhaps it might motivate you to become part of the solution.

Charles, SJ
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RE: Worse Than Telemarketers....panhandlers! Aaargh!

Tue Mar 19, 2002 4:22 am

I hate throwing change at the homeless.

If you really want to help them, ask them to go to homeless shelters where they can be taught to read, get new clothes, and get a job.

I've volunteered in homeless shelters in Cleveland, and there are people who work to get out of poverty nd wind up owning a home.
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RE: Worse Than Telemarketers....panhandlers! Aaargh!

Tue Mar 19, 2002 4:32 am

While I understand your viewpoint and used to act accordingly, I will never give them any money. I'm sorry for whatever has put them in that situation, but I will not go any further than that. Not anymore.
I've also encountered several extremely aggressive types in addition to the break in. More of an attempted robbery than a request for spare change. Never again.

Jan Mogren,
Of course not! It is always in my pocket, but I had it out to pay for the parking and forgot to put it back when I stood up. He got my tapes (no CD's in my car back then! We found them still in the box on the ground a few cars away. Guess my selection of artists wasn't good enough), an electric razor (like he'd use it), and I think a radar detector. Nothing in plain sight. He had obviously gone thru the console, but didn't hang around since the alarm was going off.
Still pissed about it.
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RE: Worse Than Telemarketers....panhandlers! Aaargh!

Tue Mar 19, 2002 12:00 pm

At least none of you live in NYC where panhandlers are everywhere. They're a way of life here, and you get used to them. There's always the people on the train (one guy with no legs who plays an accordian on the 4 train). Some guys sit in front of my building panhandling, but they're pretty cool, so I have no problems. What I can't stand is when a bum is walking through the train, and stops at you and looks at you like it's your duty to give him change.
This one homeless guy once tried to rob me on the train (at 53rd and 5th).. I was a lot taller than him and more built, so I just laughed and walked off...
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RE: Worse Than Telemarketers....panhandlers! Aaarg

Wed Mar 20, 2002 12:46 am

San Francisco is, I'm certain,the worst city in America for panhandlers.

After we moved here about 6 months ago, my dad actually found a good method of getting them to leave you alone.

Every day when he walked to his office, there would be an EXTREMELY aggressive panhandler on Geary street who would panhandle at him. The panhandler would get rude, belligerent and angry every time.
Then, after about a week my dad stopped, got bug-eyed and irate and yelled "Remember my face!! Don't ever ask it for money again!!!"
It worked. Now that guy is scared to death of my dad.

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RE: Worse Than Telemarketers....panhandlers! Aaargh!

Wed Mar 20, 2002 2:27 am

I agree that San Francisco has the worst panhandlers. When I was there last year I kept seeing the most bourgeois panhandlers I've ever seen. They were clean, well-dressed, and articulate. It was very weird. I'll never forget this one female panhandler, she had well-maintained, clean red hair, A cleaned (looked like new) Stanford sweatshirt, clean (no stains or holes) jeans, and perfect white sneakers. To top it all, she was having people throw money into here Gucci purse (it was real too), something was wrong it that situation. They need more traditional bums.

RE: Worse Than Telemarketers....panhandlers! Aaargh!

Wed Mar 20, 2002 2:48 am

On a trip to Phoenix from LA, at a rest stop, a guy had a sign about his mother dying back east somewhere and he was out of gas and money. On the return trip, the same guy had a sign about his mother dying on the
west coast this time! As he approached me, I mentioned seeing him in another rest stop and he got in his out-of-gas car and left.

I think the answer is to find out where the shelters are and direct them there. If they don't want to go there, that's their business. If you want to donate, give to the shelters.

So many of these types have criminal records and for the safety of all, they should be off the streets.

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