Friday, June 19, 2009

Open Mic Friday


The Sandwich Bandit:

I went to Subway to get a sandwich the other day and some older guy in a cheap suit walked up to my car window, tapped on it, and then proceeded to tell me this story about how he is in Houston taking his wife to the Medical center for an operation and now he is trying to get back home but his car is broken down...blah blah blah. About halfway through the story, I realize why this guy and his story look and sound so familiar, it's because he gave me the same BS about 6 months ago in the same parking lot, but last time it was in front of Schlotzsky's. So I say, "Look man, you already hit me up with this same crap about 6 months ago so either you're really unlucky and got into the exact same situation twice and happened to find me both times, or you're full of sh-- and are scamming me." Angrily the man throws his hands up and storms away. I'm getting mad at this point too because he starts walking over to another car doing the same thing so I yell "Stop scamming people" and he turns around and shakes his fist in the air at me.

There are two things you need to understand about me:

#1 I am sympathetic to the homeless and the poor, but that doesn't make me a sucker and it doesn't give them a free pass to violate the laws of our society. Whether you are poor or not, it is not right to manipulate and lie to people for financial gain. I put Maddoff, The Sandwich Bandit, and anyone who sells Efusion in the same category.

#2 I do not give money to people on the street because I cannot be 100% sure what they are going to do with it. If they buy more drugs and alcohol (and yes, that and mental disorders is why they are on the streets to begin with), then I have not helped them, but have made their situation worse. If I want to help those people, then I give my money to charitable organizations that help the poor and homeless in a responsible way.

Does it make me an insensitive prick because I don't want to give my spare change or money to people on the streets looking for a handout? Maybe, but I would argue that the person giving them money is hurting them more by helping them finance their destructive habits.

100 comments:

  1. I was about to be outraged, because when I first read the headline "Sandwich Bandit", I thought someone stole a sandwich! You know how at Wendy's you can buy the Wendy's dollars or gift cards? I say pass those out to the homeless instead of real money. Lastly, lying to people for financial gain isn't illegal. It's frowned upon...like masterbating on an airplane. To those who think that's illegal too, I say "Yeah, maybe after 9/11 when people starting getting all sensitive about it. Thanks alot BinLaden!"

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  2. I'm cool with food handouts, WendyBucks, and Disney Dollars

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  3. I agree. I don't give homeless people money. Partly because, like you said, it is probably not the best way to help and also because I really never carry cash. (Otherwise I would probably be spending about $40 a month on any homeless person with a dog.)

    However when I used to carry around extra bottled water in my car (during the dark period of commuting back and forth from work to school) I would hand out bottled water.

    I don't so much have a problem with the homeless people on the corner of the streets, but, like the sandwich bandit, I don't like the ones who come up to you and try to guilt you into helping them.

    Casey - Shame on you. Do you think anyone would be able to actually steal a sandwich from Jake??

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  4. Casey- Seriously, don't be stupid. If today's blog was about someone trying to steal a sandwich from me, the blog title would have read:
    "Man loses arm and is beaten to death with it in attempted sandwich caper"

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  5. Don't get me wrong, I would have been shocked. I have no doubt it would have taken an extravagant Ocean's 14/Italian Job 2 type of scheme to get a sandwich away from Jake, but if someone comes up and says "Do you mind looking at this auto cad application on my new iphone powered purely by the brain waves of flying monkeys, I think Jake might look away from his plate just long enough for a hawk to sweep in and pick it up in his talons, and as he was trained to do, drop it into the waiting hands of the mastermind who is sitting in a ferarri convertible ready to speed away! It's unlikely that anyone would live to successfully nab a jake sandwich, but it's not impossible.

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  6. yeah, just put the sandwich down and check it out...NOW, HUDSON!!!! "Hudson is my hawk's name."

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  7. And Rya, Thank you! By the way, masterbating on a plane is illegal, but vomiting and passing out in the bathroom are only frowned upon.

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  8. Hudson Hawk was a great movie

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  9. I hope everyone's eyes are ready to take in the amount of sexy that will be at the river. Justin, Dylan(sort of), and I are doing P90X. It's quite a sight in our garage when Dylan and I are exercising (topless) to workout videos.

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  10. Moscow on the Hudson was not

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  11. Great start to Open Mic Friday, thanks

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  12. Daylight with sylvester stallone, when the people get trapped in the hudson tunnel, is!

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  13. (I'm trying to start a word linking game, now someone says something about stallone or daylight or tunnel)...Jake, you know, sort of like that wrong name linking game we play.

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  14. bride wars starring kate Hudson was not

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  15. The War with Kevin Costner and Elijah Wood was awesome!

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  16. The Postman with Costener was not

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  17. I'm torn on this one. First of all I disagree that drugs, alcohol, and mental disorders are the only reasons that a person would find themselves on the street. Whatever the reasons which differ from person to person, once they are homeless they will remain so, almost without exception. By giving them money, even if they did go buy drugs with it, would not be making their situations worse, the floor is the floor. This is not an argument that encourages giving money to the homeless but whether they buy food or drugs, the way I see it, it might help ease their suffering if only for a short time. As strange as that sounds, the point I want to make is that giving to the homeless isn't going to help or hurt their situation at all.
    Also, I've actually spoken to older men on the streets that have been homeless since they returned from Vietnam. Most soilders were under the impression that they would return as heroes but the war became so unpopular at home, when they returned, many were blacklisted in a way and couldn't find work. How do we feel about those rare acceptions?

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  18. Matt's really bringing me down!

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  19. People living on the street are still people. They have the ability to improve their situation or make it worse. Improving it would involve going to a shelter, trying to clean themselves up, quitting their destructuve habits through rehab programs, and trying to get a job. Not improving it would be to continue begging for money, trying to scam people, stealing, and continuing to abuse drugs and alcohol. Those are two completely different paths for a homeless person to take, and by giving them cash you are helping them choose the second one. Drug addicts and alcoholics only care about one thing: how to get their next fix. You give them money on the street, problem solved. The best way to help them is to give them food or tell them to go to a shelter where trained professionals can help them try and get their lives back on track. You are hurting them by giving them money. You are enabling them.

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  20. Bring it on with Kirsten Dunst was an awesome movie

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  21. Dunstin Checks in is a great animal flick!

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  22. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  23. Animal House with Belushi and Bacon is a classic

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  24. Jake-my point is that there is no helping them. How many homeless people are going to get their lives back together, I mean really? By giving them money you are indeed enabling them. By not giving them money, you are also enabling them.

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  25. The glass house was a terrible movie, but I would totally motorboat Leelee Sobieski!

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  26. If you haven't seen the Hangover yet you should.

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  27. I totally agree. But I also somewhat disagree with giving them food, etc. I only base this on experience. Twice I have seen food given to people on the corner only to see them act disgusted and throw it away. My team and I give a homeless man near the downtown area a full meal with dessert, water and gatorade. He said nothing...no thank you..nothing. Then two minutes later after we walked away he walked to the closest trach can and threw all of it away! We have many organizations and shelters in place to help these people that our tax money pays for. Anyone that chooses to can also volunteer or give more money to these organizations. We are over populated in this world as it is so I am tired of handouts, and all this poor me bull shit....survival of the fittest! If you can't make it...sorry.

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  28. Unbreakable where Samuel L Jackson plays "Mr. Glass" is a terrible follow up to The 6TH Sense"

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  29. Sense and Sensibility with Hugh Grant...horrible

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  30. Hugh Holland's big green truck, in high school, was awesome!

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  31. Mr. Holland's Opus really beat me down with how deaf his stupid kid was.

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  32. Mr. Brooks with Kevin Costner and Dane Cook was freaking awesome!

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  33. Sarah-at least he didn't litter.

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  34. or maybe he was saving it for later...

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  35. ALL of Mel Brooks' movies are great!

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  36. But not all of Mel Gibson's

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  37. Melissa Joan Hart beat me down with 2 different shows. Clarissa Explains It All and Sabrina the Teenage Witch.

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  38. I dated Melissa Myren in middle school

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  39. I made out out with Melissa Myren senior year at a showing of Final Destination.

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  40. Byron Carroll was in my cabin at Camp Grady Spruce in 5th grade

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  41. Justin, I'm not making the connection between Byron Carrol and Final Destination/melissa myren? Please explain.

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  42. Brian Denehy was in cacoon with the guy who played Mahoney in Police Academy.

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  43. I know I'm not adding to the movie and making out with girls string of comments...so, sorry in advance. But as to the blog topic...

    I get so upset that people try to scam their way or hold up signs for free give outs and then don't care or aren't appreciative when people try to help in their own way... I encountered a guy who was on the same corner almost everyday and was quite obviously homeless (I could see where he slept under the freeway). He held up a sign that I think simply said "Hungry". I had some extra time one day and took pity on him, so I got an extra sausage biscuit and hashbrown from McDs and then stopped to give it to him.... and then he said he didn't want it, he wasn't hungry because he already had breakfast!!! JERK! I stopped feeling bad for him after that. AT least take the food and eat it later!

    I agree with Sarah, shelters are in place for a reason so I guess it is better to volunteer at a homeless shelter than to give food or money to individuals....

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  44. Academy Sports and Outdoors, the right stuff, the right price, Academy

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  45. The Academy awards are over rated and Hugh Jackman should not have been the guest

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  46. How can you not remember Steve Guttenberg as Mahoney???

    Dr. Poore was the principal at Austin Academy for Excellence and her double-F boobies seemed to come out of her belly button!

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  47. Oh oh..oh oh oh...oh oh..oh oh...oh oh..oh oh oh...The right stuff. NKOTB for life!!

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  48. When I try to say Hugh and You, they both sound the same

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  49. Sound of music is a great movie

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  50. Benjamin Button was not a great movie

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  51. Benjamin Green in The Thin Red Line was ok

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  52. Private Benjamin is classic Goldie Hawn

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  53. Death Becomes Her was not Bruce Willis' best movie

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  54. I always love a classic Golden Shower

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  55. Brett loves the Golden Compass

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  56. Rumple Foreskin is a classic.

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  57. I don't think Matt gets it.

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  58. Eddie Murphy was in Golden Child.

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  59. -Then I guess you haven't seen the movie

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  60. Kramer was in Problem Child

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  61. George Bush hates black people.

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  62. Ryan's favorite actor ever was in a terrible remake of Wild Wild West

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  63. Who thought Paul Blart - Mall Cop was a good idea?

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  64. I just loaded the clip of Kanye West and Mike Myers on the video bar...it's so funny and akward. And when West gets done with his rant, Myers just starts reading the script again because he doesn't know what else to do! Hahaha!

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  65. Mall Rats was a great movie

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  66. Splinter was a rat in Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles

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  67. So was Zack and Miri Make A Porno

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  68. scratch that....Zack and Miri Make a Porno was just OK

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  69. Go Ninja Go Ninja Go Go, Go Ninja Go Ninja Go Go,

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  70. Ice was a better pilot than Maverick, Maverick was always only looking out for himself and it got his buddy Goose killed

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  71. is it me or has Val Kilmer been eating too much ice cream lately? he's getting fat

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  72. Are you really trying to blame Maverick for Goose's death? They got caught in a jet wash! Even Iceman's "unselfish" flying couldn't have gotten out of that tail spin!

    Ooooh ee a - tailspin!
    Ooooh ee oh - tailspin!

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  73. Speaking of tailspin, what the hell is even going on right now?

    And Jake, I am pretty sure Val Kilmer has been trying to gain weight ever since Marlon Brando mind f'ed him in the filming of The Island of Dr. Moreau (I am pretty sure he also introduced Val to extreme mind altering drugs).

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  74. Have you guys ever seen anyone ride an airfoil as good as Kit Cloudkicker?

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  75. If anything, it was Iceman's fault for pursuing Viper (while in Mav's line of fire) for so long when Mav clearly had the better angle. Iceman's the selfish one who killed Goose. Him and the 800 pound canopy that goose's head and neck slammed into. Ok, it was probably mostly the canopy, but Iceman didn't help.

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  76. Brett wins for best comment of the day with "Speaking of tailspin, what the hell is even going on right now?"

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  77. The boss in talespin and gadget from rescue rangers were two of the hottest animal cartoon chicks ever!!!

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  78. By the way. This has been one hell of an open mic friday!!!!!

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  79. I think you mean Rebecca and Gadget

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  80. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YngyMco72QA&feature=player_embedded

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  81. I do mean Rebecca, you're right.

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  82. while Yes I think that is really cool, my favorite part was reading the second comment down

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  83. Holy cow! Didn't anyone work Friday? Next time, can someone give me rules for this game or is it a secret??

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  84. An appropriate comment would have been: "Inspector Gadget was an
    Idiot and a credit hog, it was his niece Penny who solved all of the crimes."

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  85. and then you might say "I can't believe there is only 1 more season of Lost, but at least they reunited Desmond and Penny"

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  86. and then I might say "Isn't funny how how in both Lost and 24, both main characters' names are Jack? And both guys are take charge, break the rules when you have to, type A personalities"

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  87. and then if you were Brett, you might say "speaking of lost, what the hell is even going on right now?"

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  88. Okayway, Iway inkthay Iway avehay itway ownay. Anksthay orfay
    explainingway.

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  89. Comment number 100!!! Also, Nancy, enough with the pig latin. I feel sweaty just reading it.

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