Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Where was I? Oh yeah, still at Wal-mart...

As I told this story to Superman I felt stupider and stupider.
This is why:

I told the kid, "Well I am actually headed down that way, I could give you all a ride."
To which he responded, "Well, we really don't want to leave the car behind.  It's my grandma's and we really need to get it back to her."

So first he asks if I can help them out by giving them a ride, then when I offer it, he turns it down.

Well I could certainly understand not wanting to leave the car more than 30 miles away from home.
So I made another suggestion.
"Well why don't you get your sister and her kids and I will give them a ride, while you and your brother sort things out with your car."

He hesitates, "Well, we really want to stay together."

He was the one who asked for a ride in the first place, what is this kids deal?

He continues, "We really just need gas, we've found a guy who is willing to take us to a gas station, but we only have sixty five cents."

"What we really need is your money."

I'm suspicious now, "Soooooo, why don't you go and get your sister and her two little ones, I will give them a ride so they don't have to wait it being so late and all.  
I could maybe give you five dollars for gas."

Again he declines my help, asking only for money.

Yeah, money, big surprise.

I tell him I am not just going to hand money over to him.
I tell him he has got to show me his people and prove that what he is saying is true.

No answer, he starts to walk away thanking me anyway.

Who is the idiot?
Obviously I am.
All I could think though was, 
but what if he ISN'T lying.
What if there really are some poor tired stranded kids wanting to get home, eat, and go to bed?

Here are the clues that he was in fact not helpless at all:

1-Would somebody really have pulled several miles off the freeway, to go to Wal-mart, thirty miles away from home that late at night, with two very small children?  
2-Would they really have been so dumb as to run out of gas on a road trip home.  
3-Don't people normally monitor their gas to be sure they can make their trip.  
4-If they were about to run out of gas wouldn't they have pulled off the freeway and into a gas station instead of the nearest Wal-mart.  
5-If they really didn't have any money for gas, what the heck were they doing at Wal-mart anyway?
6- Obviously asking for a ride to a city located more than 30 miles south was bound to get refusal.
7-What are the chances someone would actually be headed that way?
8-Who in the heck shops at a Wal-mart that far from home?

I should have thought a bit harder about his story before believing it.

Here is what I should have done:

Questionable looking young man approches me, "Excuse me maam.....we need help...."

Me, "Okay well, I'll tell you where you can get it.  Go to the nearest pay phone, look up the local police station, call the number listed there.  Tell an officer your problem, they are there to serve, so let them.  Now run along, good luck, have a nice night."

Then I should have hauled ass into my truck, looked up the local police stations number myself, and then called to let them know what this kid, with this car, with this license plate number, was doing.  
And perhaps saved someone else a few dollars or some wasted time.

The story doesn't end there.
Because I had to know if he really was lying or not.
I was just too darned worried.
I loaded up my truck, watching where this kid went out of the corner of my eye.
I saw him walk toward the entrance to the store.
I saw him meet up with two other guys.
I lost track of them while I got into my truck.
I waited, not long though.
The kid came back to his car, opened the door and then went back into the store.
I drove around the lot.
I saw him with the two guys again.
They knew I was watching.
I pulled out of the lot drove around a restaurant and watched as these three guys climbed into their car, started it, and drove away.

Need I say more.....


Heather Davies said...

Oh boy--how sad! Why would he even make up that story? I guess he thought you'd be a sucker, but good thing you asked questions. That's pretty desperate of him!

Anonymous said...

I hate stories like this. I honestly want to help everyone and often do, but then I hear about scammers, and it makes me so mad. Makes me not want to help anyone. I guess that's why I usually do most of my giving through church, food drives, sub for santa, etc so I know it's legit.


The Mecham Family said...

Good for you! It's people like that who ruin it for those that really maybe need help. You did a great job investigating!

Worthy Family said...

This is why I can't pick up someone on the road, or give them money. I just don't believe them....sad that this is what the world has come to. Used to be you could help someone out without worrying.....

Shell said...

I've had to get rude about it and just cut people off. I hate that someone really could need help...but there are too many scammers.

Dan/Kealy said...

Wow-I can't believe you kept talking to him to really figure out his story--smart! I would've been freaked out that he was going to do something to me.