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Thu Mar 8, 2012, 02:10 PM

A heartbreaking scene at lunch

Here in the Twin Cities we have "skyways" - second story connectors between the buildings downtown that permit us Minnesotans to get around without going outdoors in the cold weather.

I headed out of my building, going to pick up something to eat, and in the skyway between my office and the next block was a woman I guessed to be in her mid-late 30s. She was clean, dressed in a winter jacket and dark slacks. She held a neatly printed sign that said

Husband died
Three kids to support
Anything will help.

I walked about half a block past her with a growing sadness. I turned around, went back to her and pressed a five-dollar bill in her palm and said "Good luck." I was beginning to get teary. She looked at me with an expression of abject gratefulness and said "thank you."

I am financially a bit strapped myself these days with a move impending at the edge of the month, but there was no way I could in good conscience deny her what I could give. Smaller lunches for a couple of days won't hurt me in the least. But maybe her kids will have something decent to eat tonight. At least I hope so.

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Arrow 17 replies Author Time Post
Reply A heartbreaking scene at lunch (Original post)
hifiguy Mar 2012 OP
democrat_patriot Mar 2012 #1
CaliforniaPeggy Mar 2012 #2
closeupready Mar 2012 #3
peacebird Mar 2012 #15
louslobbs Mar 2012 #4
snacker Mar 2012 #5
dana_b Mar 2012 #6
HopeHoops Mar 2012 #7
siligut Mar 2012 #8
noiretextatique Mar 2012 #9
Warpy Mar 2012 #10
tblue37 Mar 2012 #14
raccoon Mar 2012 #16
hamsterjill Mar 2012 #11
Cleita Mar 2012 #12
Lifelong Protester Mar 2012 #13
TBF Mar 2012 #17

Response to hifiguy (Original post)

Thu Mar 8, 2012, 02:13 PM

1. Good for you.


Hope her kids are OK.

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Response to hifiguy (Original post)

Thu Mar 8, 2012, 02:15 PM

2. You did a very good thing, my dear hifiguy...

Her situation is heartbreaking.

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Response to hifiguy (Original post)

Thu Mar 8, 2012, 02:18 PM

3. An old axiom goes, "never suppress a generous impulse."

You did good.

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Response to closeupready (Reply #3)

Fri Mar 9, 2012, 07:36 AM

15. Hubby & i have been making monthly donations to both local food banks & the free clinic for the past

4 or 5 years. We are not wealthy by any stretch but when we look around, it just felt like something we could and should do. The people who run them send us notes saying how there are so many "first timers" showing up for their help, folks who were middle class and cannot believe that they themselves would ever need such assistance.... Heartbreaking. Simply heartbreaking.

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Response to hifiguy (Original post)

Thu Mar 8, 2012, 02:19 PM

4. Beautiful hifiguy, I'm proud to be on this earth with you. Good luck with the move and all the best

Lou

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Response to hifiguy (Original post)

Thu Mar 8, 2012, 02:20 PM

5. Thank you...

for your kindness.

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Response to hifiguy (Original post)

Thu Mar 8, 2012, 02:20 PM

6. I'm glad you stopped

and I'm sure her kids would be too.

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Response to hifiguy (Original post)

Thu Mar 8, 2012, 03:24 PM

7. Good job.

 

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Response to hifiguy (Original post)

Thu Mar 8, 2012, 03:25 PM

8. You have to help where you can

Good you gave her something, that people still care about the welfare of others is important when things go so far south. These are difficult times for so many people.

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Response to hifiguy (Original post)

Thu Mar 8, 2012, 03:27 PM

9. you are a decent human being

who could not stomach the suffering of another, while many others passed without caring. may you be blessed.

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Response to hifiguy (Original post)

Thu Mar 8, 2012, 03:35 PM

10. Boston hospitals had gerbil tubes and underground tunnels

going from building to building but we never saw the homeless there, too many hospital cops.

The pathos usually existed in and around the subways. I tried to be generous when I could.

And no, I don't care if they're going to spend it on booze or crack. The consequences for not spending it on booze, especially, can be lethal to an addict.

They know what they need more than I do.

I hope you mentioned that she needed to go to the social security office. Survivors benefits are owed to her kids, enough that she could stop begging and get on her feet.

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Response to Warpy (Reply #10)

Fri Mar 9, 2012, 07:01 AM

14. I once gave every dollar and cent I had on me to a couple begging for

"gas money" outside a Walgreen's drugstore. I handed them a little over $22 and told them to get someplace warm!!!

The weather was awful--freezing rain, super hard winds.

be told, they actually looked and acted as though they probably would spend the money for alcohol, but my feeling was that if they were standing outside in that sort of weather asking strangers for money, especially as their winter outerwear was not really sufficient for the type of weather we were having, then they probably really needed it for whatever they ended up spending it on. I just wanted them to get out of the weather!

The lady actually teared up when she grabbed my hand and thanked me after I gave her the money and told her to go someplace warm. (I always give the money to the woman if there's a woman and a man, because I want her to have a some say in how it is spent. I know he can take it from her, but I think that sometimes if the money is in the woman's hands, she does get to influence how it is spent. Probably she wants to spend it the same way he does, but maybe not always.)

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Response to Warpy (Reply #10)

Fri Mar 9, 2012, 10:03 AM

16. Thank you. I thought of Social Security too. Me and my sibs got it. nt

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Response to hifiguy (Original post)

Thu Mar 8, 2012, 05:11 PM

11. Bless your heart.

I am a firm believer that when your conscience nags at you, that you must listen.

Thanks for helping her! May good karma come your way someday.

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Response to hifiguy (Original post)

Thu Mar 8, 2012, 05:17 PM

12. This is America, the greatest country in the world.

These true live scenarios of desperate Americans struggling to survive do not make us the greatest country in the world. People like you who are also struggling should not be the last chance for people down on their luck to rely on. With all the billionaires we allow to live here, almost scot free of obligations, it's time to get some LBJ-like social programs in place with tax money collected from those very wealthy people who are not paying their fair share of taxes. I think if Mrs. Romney sacrifices the cost of what it takes to maintain one of her horses, it would probably help a family like the widow you described.

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Response to hifiguy (Original post)

Thu Mar 8, 2012, 11:33 PM

13. Love you and your liberal heart

I would have done the same. Thank you for doing what your heart said to do.

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Response to hifiguy (Original post)

Fri Mar 9, 2012, 01:14 PM

17. I give to folks no matter how they're dressed -

I keep small bills in my car for that purpose (we are doing ok economically - not 1% but we're employed). I figure if you're desperate enough to stand out by the highway with a sign something has probably gone very wrong and I'm not about to be the one to stand in judgment.

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