I’m not much of a risk-taker. You won’t catch me bungee jumping or hopping out of a plane. That’s just crazy. Appropriate risks include trying a new flavoured latte or buying the generic version of my preferred soap. However, once in a while, inspiration hits and I will tell that nay-saying voice inside my head to pipe down.
One evening I finished up my grocery shopping and went to the Tim Hortons in the same plaza to grab a coffee (just my usual black decaf, wasn’t feeling daring). As I got back into my car I noticed a man crouched near a pillar in a darkened corner between the drugstore and First Choice Haircutters. Most shops had closed down for the evening.
I heard a little voice say to me, “you should help him.”
Me: You know, I’m almost in the car, going over now is a little obvious. I’m sure someone else will be by soon.
Voice: Nope. You. Go.
Me: I walked by earlier and he didn’t ask for anything. We’re good.
Me: Look, he appears to have had enough cash to buy some smokes. Heading home, my coffee is getting cold.
I grabbed a five out of my wallet and nervously headed over to the stranger. I took a deep breath and boldly held out my hand.
“Here, this is for you.”
He seemed a bit startled and took his earbuds out. He paused, looked at me, looked at the money in my hand, back at me, and said:
“I’m not homeless, I’m just on my break.”
Your turn – any embarrassing incidents to share? Perhaps one that required you to never wear your favourite red jacket to a certain plaza again for fear of recognition?
21 thoughts on “Risk Management”
My mom came in from a walk outside and said the kid across the street fell hard on his skateboard and wasn’t getting up. So she made me go out and check on him to make sure he didn’t have a concussion. Turns out when he wipes out, he likes to just lay there and listen to music.
I do, too.
It should be country music.
Have I never told you about the guy in the band and the girl at church? Two great and awful stories.
I cannot wait.
I pulled into a grocery store parking lot one day and saw an elderly man taking his now-empty cart back to the cart storage area. Thinking I was being nice, I offered to take his cart for him. He scowled and looked at me like I had three heads. It was then I realized that they were those carts that chain together and require a 25 cent deposit to separate. He thought I was trying to con him out of his quarter. Oops.
Doesn’t pay to be kind. I’ll mail you a quarter.
Well, there was the time I hopped in the car, asked my wife if she was ready to go. She said “Sure” and then realized I was in the wrong car. Not really sure where this lady wanted me to take her.
Actually laughed out loud. I love it.
The real question is, “Did you give him the $5 anyways?
Either way, you sure made his day.
I blocked it out.
What he should have said was, “Thanks!”
Yes, or offered to buy me a doughnut.
HA HA HA!! That is wonderful! To read, not to live.
The car stories make me think of how I’ve twice had to go out to the parking lot of my job and make sure someone wasn’t dead in their car. To clarify, I work at a pharmacy. So it’s not completely odd to think that a person sleeping in their car may not be sleeping. I mean, I never had to see if my customers were alive or not when I worked at a toy store.
One old man had his door swung open all the way and he was kind of laying across his driver seat with one leg out of the car. It was super embarassing trying to explain why I woke him without saying, “we thought you were dead.”
I really did avoid wearing that coat to that plaza again.
“Are you dead?” that’s my new favourite question.
This is HILARIOUS.
We were driving into St Catharines and saw an elderly man with his walker on a busy highway overpass. We debated if we should stop because he looked out of place. In the end we turned around and caught up with him as he was veering onto a busy four lane roadway. He had dimentia and was confused about where he lived. Apparently he had gotten passed the security of his nursing home and was many blocks away from home.