Tuesday, March 06, 2007

to help or not

So on Monday morning I went to run some errands while Greg was home with Naomi. I got in the car and realized that I needed to get gas. So I stopped at the closest gas station and was just about to pump my gas when I was approached by a male about 30 years old.

"Can you help me m'am. My girlfriend and I are on our way to Columbia and I only had five dollars to use for gas. I tried to go to the church but they will only give us food. I'm good for it really I am. We just need to get to Columbia. I've got a checkbook and I can write you a check and send it to you. We just need some gas and some oil. I'd rather go to _____ because the gas is cheaper there but this is where we ended up. Could you just spot me $20 and I'll pay you back $30? I'm good for it, trust me"

So I'm a little hesitant but decide that I may help this guy out. So I told him, "I don't have any cash but I can swipe my card to get you some gas."

So he agrees and I swipe my card but for some reason it does not work in that particular machine. He says, "Could we just go to an ATM and get $20 for gas?"

RED FLAGS.

"No, I can't get you cash but I can just pay for it inside."

Again, he agrees, starts to get the pump ready, presses the "pay inside" button and the presses the SUPER + button. I'm watching him and thinking how stupid does he think I am. So he presses the SUPER + button again and then says, "Oh no, I didn't want to do that. I'll just put $5 in, it's been a really tough day. I really need oil, the oil light came on and I don't know what to do, I really need oil."

So he puts $5 in and then we go inside and I get him a can of oil too. I pay for the gas and oil and he walks out the door, puts the oil in his car and drives off. No, "thanks", no, "what's your address so I can send you some money" (not that I would have given him my address). He just gets in the car and his girlfriend drives away.

I get to my pump and finally put some gas in my car. My card works just fine at my pump. Then as I drive off I look to the gas station across the street and my little friend and his girl are there, probably trying to scam someone else.

So, I know I got scammed but did I do the right thing? Usually I just use the "I'm trying to put my husband through grad school and I have a new baby" line but for some reason this time I didn't. Oh well. God put him in my life for a reason...not sure what that reason is, but God does.

1 comment:

Dana said...

Jamie, It must be something with our family. Last week one night the doorbell rang about 9:30 - should have known to ignore it - but Doug answered it. It was a woman saying her car had run out of gas and she needed gas money (was there a car out there - no, but did we notice that then - no). She was telling us this long story about how she was moving in a few houses away, and asked to use a phone to call someone. She played with the phone for a while before asking for money again. We gave her $4.00 as other than that we only had $20's and I was not going to give her that much. She went down the road toward the gas station. About 30 minutes later she rang the doorbell again. This time she said something about needing a deposit fora gas can so she could get the gas. She wanted more money. She also was complaining about her hands being cold and wnating us to open the door wider so she would feel like she was relly talking to us. Of course we did not open the door any wider - as I did not want her coming in. Anyway, Doug went to get our gas can - figured it was 10 year old and had a little gas - if she was legit it would help her. She went down the road after getting the gas can and me giving her a pair of gloves to keep her hands warm. As she almost ran away from our house, I said don't ring the bell when you are done with the gas can, please put it by the shrub in the front yard. Surprise surprise ... our gas can has not showed back up. Oh well.... Then two nights later a gentlemen walked into handbell practice asking for gas money. Now you too - what a week.