Sunday, November 13, 2011

And So It Begins

The annual holiday begging has started on Craigslist. It seems excessively early this year, but maybe they're paying more attention to the stores than to the calendar and figure it's time. There are always people asking for free items on Craigslist, but the numbers increase the closer we get to Christmas.

For the record, I have nothing against helping someone in need. I've given away my fair share of food, clothing, gifts and money to various charities, food pantries, churches and individuals. I'm not talking about the people who are truly in need. I'm not talking about people that find themselves in dire straights due to job loss or some such. No, I'm referring to the people who make a living off the charity of others. And those who up the ante around the holidays to prey on people trying to generous.

Exhibit 1:

Free Motorcycle Wanted! (El Mirage)
Date: 2011-10-10, 11:25AM MST

Hi, I know this sounds crazy, but I need to cut down gas costs. I currently am spending over 300 a month on gas and can't afford it anymore. I am a single mom, working full time, and going to school. I need a fully working motorcycle that will get me to work and back. I can't afford payments, obviously, and don't have money saved up to buy one. I had one previously, but due to a divorce and a near bankruptcy, my parents bought it and my dad is trying to fix it up for himself. Between the insurance and gas money on that, I believe I will be able to save around $100 a month, and that is a wonderful thing for someone who has absolutely ZERO left over every month! PLEASE HELP! I know I am asking for a miracle, but I am praying that God will provide me with it! Please e-mail me at the e-mail address provided by craigslist or text me.

Thank you and God Bless!


While I appreciate the logic of trying to save money on gas by getting a bike, it seems like the high price of gas is the least of your problems. I'm fairly sure that God does not in fact supply free motorcycles. Especially not ones that are "fully working". Also, nice dad you got there.

Exhibit 2:

Date: 2011-11-12, 6:30PM MST


Ummm, maybe forgo the tree this year? Do you still have a string of lights from previous years? Because I've made a tree shape out of lights on the wall before and then taped paper ornaments inside the outline. It actually looked pretty cool and it didn't cost me anything. It should be noted that this particular lister has been putting various versions of this same ad up since mid-October.

Exhibit 3:

I need furniture beds,couches,tv etc - $20 (phx)
Date: 2011-11-13, 4:14PM MST

is anyone giving away any beds couches tvs household items. im in need of donations I do not have anything in my apartment, I do have a little cash maybe like 20 if anyone haz a heart please can u help this mom out call me xxx xxx xxxx

Okay, pulling the mom card is almost understandable, trying to guilt us by suggesting that if we don't give to you we must not "haz a heart" is less so. Asking for beds is acceptable, asking for tvs not so much. Also, Craigslist really doesn't limit the number of characters you use so you can actually spell out all of your words. And don't get me started on the lack of capitalization and random punctuation.

Exhibit 4:

Piano (PHX)
Date: 2011-11-12, 10:02AM MST

If anyone has a piano they would like to give away I would gladly take it. I can hire someone to move it, so you don't have to worry about damage to your home.

Wow, that's so nice that you'll hire someone to remove it from my home. I guess I should be grateful you didn't ask me to deliver it. But seriously, are there that many people giving away pianos these days?

I'm sure the number of ads and the feeling of desperation conveyed will increase exponentially with each week closer to Christmas we get. The week before Christmas will invariably be filled with people angrily complaining about all of the "grinches" in this town that must want the kids to suffer with no Christmas presents under the tree, blah, blah, blah. I'm not heartless, I just find it interesting how many people out there think that everyone one else should supply their houseful of furniture and holiday cheer.


Bo said...

Do you know that I have never once looked at craigslist? I only have the vaguest idea what it is. I'm not very hip, am I?

Mirth said...

You're not really missing anything Bo. :)