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Old 07-29-2014, 01:34 PM   #41
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Originally Posted by LoneAspen View Post
The reward of doing a kind deed for somebody (even though financially, they might not have needed it) was probably worth far more to her than any payback.

Just pay it forward to somebody else you might see in need someday
I remember we did something really nice (but small like paying for a $6 pizza) for someone else right before this happened, so we joked that karma bought us a pizza. In reality, it was the generosity of this one lady that bought us that pizza.
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Old 07-29-2014, 02:20 PM   #42
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....decidedly lower middle class runs out of the store and hands us the pizza. She says "Here, enjoy the pizza. I know what it's like to be in your shoes and come up a little short at the check out line. I was there when I was pregnant with my kid too."

I tried to get her to wait while I grabbed $6 in coins from my car to reimburse her, but she insisted on making it a gift. She probably saw my beat up 14 year old Honda Civic and our family of 4 (about to be 5) and figured we needed the money.....
You realize that you make the same assumption about her ("decidedly lower middle class") that she made about you? She might have been just trying to save your pride by saying she knows what it's like to be in your shoes, but even if not, she could be worth multiples of the rest of us Aldi shoppers .

DH and I got back from an Aldi/Whole Foods trip last week and that evening I realized my shirt was pretty visibly inside out. D'oh!
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Old 07-29-2014, 03:02 PM   #43
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I get mistaken for waiter in casual dining restaurants where waiter(ess) do not wear uniforms or aprons. On my way to and back from restroom, I get stopped and asked "can you get me some water?" Ditto in small 7-eleven type of market, e.g, I get "hey, where do you stock beers?" type of question. I just smile and say "I don't work here." Then again, they may be assuming I am rich enough to be the owner ... .
Weird. Maybe stop wearing those corporate polo shirts with khakis.
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Old 07-29-2014, 03:16 PM   #44
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You realize that you make the same assumption about her ("decidedly lower middle class") that she made about you? She might have been just trying to save your pride by saying she knows what it's like to be in your shoes, but even if not, she could be worth multiples of the rest of us Aldi shoppers .

DH and I got back from an Aldi/Whole Foods trip last week and that evening I realized my shirt was pretty visibly inside out. D'oh!
Yeah, I realized that I'm making a big assumption about her within 2 seconds after I told DW how weird it feels to receive charity from a person who might have 1/10 or 1/100 our NW. She might be a millionaire looking for a bargain just like me for all I know. We do live (and shop) in a somewhat lower income area, so it's unlikely this person was a stealth millionaire, but you never know.
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Old 07-29-2014, 03:23 PM   #45
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I get mistaken for waiter in casual dining restaurants where waiter(ess) do not wear uniforms or aprons. On my way to and back from restroom, I get stopped and asked "can you get me some water?" Ditto in small 7-eleven type of market, e.g, I get "hey, where do you stock beers?" type of question. I just smile and say "I don't work here." Then again, they may be assuming I am rich enough to be the owner ... .
This has happened to me. Multiple times at walmart. I guess I have a decent number of khaki shorts and dark blue polo shirts, so I fit the dress code at WM on occasion. Sometimes I'll just respond and tell them "past the auto department, left, then go all the way to the front."

One time our whole family dressed to match the walmart dress code, totally by accident. Sam Walton did not rise from the grave to thank us or anything, but it was a bit weird. I've learned to switch to a non-blue polo shirt when shopping at walmart.
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Old 07-29-2014, 03:52 PM   #46
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This has happened to me. Multiple times at walmart. I guess I have a decent number of khaki shorts and dark blue polo shirts, so I fit the dress code at WM on occasion. Sometimes I'll just respond and tell them "past the auto department, left, then go all the way to the front."
See 1:30 in for a similar experience...

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Old 07-29-2014, 04:10 PM   #47
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This has happened to me. Multiple times at walmart. I guess I have a decent number of khaki shorts and dark blue polo shirts, so I fit the dress code at WM on occasion. Sometimes I'll just respond and tell them "past the auto department, left, then go all the way to the front."

One time our whole family dressed to match the walmart dress code, totally by accident. Sam Walton did not rise from the grave to thank us or anything, but it was a bit weird. I've learned to switch to a non-blue polo shirt when shopping at walmart.
I worked at a Kmart for a while to earn some spending money when I was in college, and even after I quit, I would occasionally stop by the store to buy stuff and say hello to some ex-colleagues. On those occasions when I saw someone lost or looking for something, I would direct them to the right place even though I no longer worked there. Yes, I was a dedicated (ex)employee.

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Old 07-29-2014, 04:26 PM   #48
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Yeah, I realized that I'm making a big assumption about her within 2 seconds after I told DW how weird it feels to receive charity from a person who might have 1/10 or 1/100 our NW. She might be a millionaire looking for a bargain just like me for all I know. We do live (and shop) in a somewhat lower income area, so it's unlikely this person was a stealth millionaire, but you never know.
I worked with a guy on my first job right out of college with MegaCorp. He was also a recent college graduate and looked and acted like the rest of us, totally unassuming and very hard working.

One day a group of us went out to lunch together and as he pulled out of his wallet, we noticed that he had several paychecks that still hadn't been deposited (back in those days they still handed you a check). We teased him about it but later someone found out that he came from old money on both sides of the family. His parents were heirs to a couple of the family fortunes that even today would be instantly recognizable. One of his forebears donated land to local government and a street was named after the family. He had a trust fund of x million, and we eventually took to calling him the x-million-dollar man.

But he never flaunted or talked about his money. He drove an average car and worked hard and earned a decent paycheck like the rest of the us. The only difference was that he didn't bother to deposit the paychecks
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Old 07-29-2014, 04:55 PM   #49
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In heavy city traffic I was sideswiped by a Cook County state's attorney in her county car. She was very apologetic, saying she was distracted because she spent her day laying off people at the office. Because of the traffic, I waited to the next day to get the police report.

When we went to settle, she completely lied and said it was my fault and since we didn't have a police witness on the scene I had no proof otherwise.
This is why I always call the police. A friend had something like this happen and she ended up paying for his damage even though he was the cause of the accident.
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Old 07-29-2014, 05:24 PM   #50
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I never get mistaken for the help, and I don't get snubbed in stores. Even my small, cheap car doesn't seem to fool anybody.

I used to, though, when younger. In fact, when I was 20, a store owner accused me of stealing a sterling silver necklace I'd left with him on layaway (anyone remember layaway?) He reduced me to tears, and when he finally located the piece, which he'd naturally misplaced, he was so ashamed of himself (I think) that he wouldn't apologize.

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Old 07-29-2014, 05:39 PM   #51
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I was reminded of this short film by this thread:


Apologies if you have seen it before.
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Old 07-29-2014, 05:46 PM   #52
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I never get mistaken for the help, and I don't get snubbed in stores. Even my small, cheap car doesn't seem to fool anybody.

I used to, though, when younger. In fact, when I was 20, a store owner accused me of stealing a sterling silver necklace I'd left with him on layaway (anyone remember layaway?) He reduced me to tears, and when he finally located the piece, which he'd naturally misplaced, he was so ashamed of himself (I think) that he wouldn't apologize.

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What? He didn't commit seppuku?
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Old 07-29-2014, 05:48 PM   #53
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Weird. Maybe stop wearing those corporate polo shirts with khakis.
I think that's it. That's what I normally wear on weekdays. And my unassuming, lackluster face does not help.
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Old 07-29-2014, 05:55 PM   #54
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As a European I hate to say it but you will experience those moments more likely in Europe. Likelihood will increase if you are not white. Likelihood will again increase further you go to eastern part of Europe.

God Bless "Melting Pot" Good old USA . You have it easy guys.
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Old 07-29-2014, 06:04 PM   #55
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Dumb question, but how do you get insurance money, rather than getting your car fixed? I've never been offered that opportunity, unless the car got totaled and they paid out. Otherwise, it would always be a matter of take it to the body shop, they fix it, and the insurance handles it. I've never been offered the opportunity of getting the cash instead.

Back in 2006, I got rear-ended in my old '85 Silverado, by a 2000 Infiniti I30 or something like that...the Infiniti Maxima, basically. I'm sure it totaled the Infiniti. Here's what it did to my truck...

It didn't even bend the bumper itself, but rather the brackets behind it. In total, it was $450 to fix, which ended up including a new bumper, brackets, and I think they replaced the license plate lights as well.

Honestly, I would've rather had the $450. But then again, maybe not. I got rear-ended again, a month later, by a 2001 Hyundai Elantra. That time, it just curled one edge of the bumper, but didn't hurt the brackets. I guess it's possible though, that if I hadn't had a new bumper and brackets put on from the prior crash, the second crash might have done a bit more damage.

I didn't even feel the second crash, though. I was in a traffic jam, let my foot off the brake to coast forward a few feet, and then stopped again. Looked in my rear view mirror and saw a Hyundai wedged up under my bumper. Driver had tried to make a lane change just a bit too close.
Was this by chance on Rte 198?
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Old 07-29-2014, 06:22 PM   #56
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Few years ago, I went to lower Manhattan for a week-long training for the latest software version. It cost a bundle for the company, and I had a good time sight-seeing at night.

Training classroom is in a high rise secured building. There were security guards at the entrance and we have to swipe the cards to enter.

The first day, during lunch hour, I went out and bought Chinese take-out. On my way in before I took out my badge, the guard pointed out the freight elevator and told me to go there instead . I did not think too much of it and simply went in. I later realized, he thought that I was the take-out delivery man being a 50+ Asian man myself and I did not wear suit like the rest of the workers in that building. I could be a delivery man or a janitor.
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Old 07-29-2014, 06:55 PM   #57
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I went to Japan for two weeks on a SW development assignment. On weekend, I walked around different places and some Japanese thought I was manual laborer from 3rd world country.

But the highlight of my "stealth wealth" career was the day DS found out I was a millionaire. We sent him to a prep school and almost all of his friends' parents are multi-millionaires (a few are billionaires) living in pretty fancy neighborhood and houses. Comparing their houses & neighbors to our home, DS figured that we were living just ok. One day, DW and I were talking about RE and DS overheard. "Can you afford it?" is how he started. Once he found that we can, he said, "wow, I never knew." LBYM'ng and our effort to not spoil our only child, we have completely succeed in hiding our wealth (I mean a small one at that) from DS.
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Old 07-29-2014, 07:03 PM   #58
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I'm usually taken for the help at garden nurseries. I know a lot of the local growers and when people see me talking to them just assume I work there.
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Old 07-29-2014, 07:09 PM   #59
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I believe it is because I tend to look people straight in the eye and smile. As a young woman, I had to curb the tendency, because it got me attention I didn't want. Middle-age cured that problem.

The funny thing is, we are not wealthy. At any rate, we sure couldn't buy bunches of expensive German automobiles.

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Old 07-29-2014, 07:21 PM   #60
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Nice truck. I don't know how I got a check but it's happened 3 times. Same thing my pickup(s) had a bent bumper, the other vehicles were totaled. Each time ~$500 check for a bent bumper from insurance. Each accident the person behind me didn't stop.

Sounds like a great deal, except I've had to spend months doing PT(old C-spine injury) as a result. I too started alerting other driver's when I saw traffic slowing down by tapping brakes.

I love this thread. This is a potpourri of experiences we are sharing. I went to UCLA for med school and spent many hours in LA traffic jams. Anyway, I long ago learned the tap the brake lights trick. I also give extra distance in front of me most of the time. Allows others to change lanes and gives me peace of mind. In a snowstorm in Virginia this technique prevented me from getting even bumped in a multicar pile-up in 2010. I used blinkers as well for this.


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