Thursday, December 13, 2012

The best nation is do-nation

If I disappear shortly after this post is published, you will all know I was seriously on to something.

There is a lot that makes me suspicious. Granted, I am a bit more paranoid in this new day and age where it seems more people seek out their livelihood by taking advantage of other people than by putting in actual hard work. There are certain things that just don't add up, and maybe there are genuine red flags worth pointing out.

Why does the small indie book store across the street from me never have the book I want? You're a book store... at least offer to order it for me. Why do the cheap shoe stores open and immediately put a SALE sign in the window? Surely you're going to have a go at selling your goods at full price first, no? How in the world can these nail places afford to charge only $10 to paint my nails for over 30 minutes, pay the lady who did it and pay rent? My guess is that they are all fronts for something else. And "kill me" cabs (livery cabs to the average person, but also known as "black cabs" before you could stick a phone number bumper sticker and T-license plate on any colored car) are they as dangerous as I fear them to be? I mean in a lock you inside and drive you somewhere to steal your organs way, not referring to their gradual lane drifts or random breaking while accelerating.

But suspicions run particularly deep when I am approached on the street by a perky 20 something carrying a clipboard. I object to them blocking the sidewalks and desperately wanting to talk to me about something.  The assumption that any person can spare time to chat about their cause seems ridiculous to me. Their "pick-up"" lines are ludicrous and very often discredit their organization more than they help it.

In many cases I actually do support their cause, but legitimately just don't have the time to talk. Do they have to use such awkward lines that make me feel like a jerk if I can't stop? "Ma'am, a minute if you support gay rights?" Well, I do support gay rights. But I don't have a minute... does that make everyone around us now think I don't support gay rights? That's not fair. Can't I somehow support them and not miss my train?

To the Planned Parenthood boy who sees me walking with a stroller and says "I bet you like kids." Um, yes, I do. In fact I am about to have one having a complete meltdown because it's 30 minutes past nap time and you are preventing me from getting home as quickly as possible... I do like kids, and I can assume that if you keep me for one more minute, you will no longer like kids.

I suppose the part that really concerns me is that in this day and age, is it advisable to stop on the street and give a stranger your name, telephone number and *gasp* credit card information? It just seems like one of those dumb a$$ things that you hear someone did and you say, well duh! why would you do that? Do people really do that? Why?!?

And I'm not just saying this because I've been burned in the past. Did I buy ten tickets to a comedy club because technically I was getting them for the price of only three? Yes. I never used them. Did I buy $500 worth of salon treatments for only $75... of course. And then on the day I could actually use them the salon is overbooked and I ended up with a half hearted eyebrow wax and a terrible blowout (I'm guessing $50 max). Plus tip.

But I guess those experiences helped turn me from an open minded deal seeker into the skeptical, untrusting woman who doesn't believe that this is really what this young generation has to do to make money these days. In fact, are these even legitimate jobs? I'm pretty sure I could go out and make a t-shirt that says anything half credible sounding and carry a clipboard. Is that all I have to do to get people's names, addresses, credit card information (or better yet, cash?). Am I just some sort of cynical, evil person that I don't really trust all of these people? Ok, the World Wildlife Fund I've heard of, but Children's International? I mean, sure, it sounds legit, but admit it, it also sounds kinda fake. It's just believable enough, and it has the word children in it, so it must be real, right?

Why are these organizations paying people to stand in the street collecting money? Is that a good use of the donations they do get? On behalf of the polar bear I will say it is not.

I will cite the 12.12.12 concert as a very good way of soliciting donations. I'm relaxing at home in the evening being entertained by a star-studded concert, of course I'm going to call in and donate. Hello Eddie Vedder! *swoon* Well played Robin Hood Foundation. Though I will note that their name also sounds too fake to be real, but, in Bruce we trust.

I think I will stick with the charities that I can seek out in person, or on the phone or online to make contributions to in the comfort of my own home over a secure internet connection. Untrusting? Definitely. Impatient? Absolutely. Overprotective of my personal information. For sure. Gonna buy a bridge while walking down the street? Hopefully not again.

1 comment:

  1. HA! Love it! This is so true. I HATE being approached on the sidewalk and feel like a complete jerk blowing these people off, even though I find it totally invasive that they are butting into my day uninvited. Oh Linds, the next time I see you don't let me forget, I need to ask you an important question about your hair... :)


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