I am absolutely amazed at the friendships that start and flourish on the internet. The people that I talk with on a daily basis I feel an incredible closeness to.
I am floored by the generosity of those that I have met online. I have seen someone post “I hate to do this, but can someone lend me $30 so I can get enough gas to get to work this week. I will totally hit you back” and will see a list of people ready and willing to pay it forward. It is amazing the amount of generous people looking to help people in need.
However, there are some times when you are not necessarily sure where your gift is going. What happens if someone says “I need $320 for a new part for my car” but is using it for something else. Did they lie? Was “part for my car” their way of getting money to pay off their bar tab? Are you being conned?
With internet anonymity, you can’t always trust the old adage “what you see is what you get”. The person that you have gotten to know and have invested time and honesty into might be a completely different person playing a role.
So how do you decipher what is true and what is false?
It pains me to admit, but I don’t know. I have racked my brain for quite some time with this predicament. There are people on Twitter begging for a RT from someone famous linking to a “charity”, but how do we know if the link is genuine?
Sadly there are people that will take advantage of the kindness of others. It is inevitable. Once you feel that you have been duped, how can you be sure that anything you want to do in the future is on the up and up?
I know this is a completely depressing post, but I just don’t know. I have no idea what advice I can give to those who have been burned. It’s happened to me in the past and has definitely affected my desire to donate to certain things. Money complicates everything. Loaning a friend some money then watching them spend frivolously without paying you back is one of the worst things to go through.
The only shining light in loaning/donating via the internet is that you can keep record of what you have given and if something doesn’t add up, you have proof of fraud. If you are extending a helping hand to someone, I suggest including someone else in the correspondence so that it is not the case of my word versus their word.
Please be vigilant. Some things to keep mind of.
1. If someone doesn’t publicly thank you for giving them something, they might be getting things from other people. Sometimes even though people are getting things from you, they might be getting money or gifts from others. They don’t publicly acknowledge because they don’t want the well to run dry. If they send you a thank you privately, save that in a special folder marked “Just in Case”.
2. Be wary of shifting stories. If someone is telling you about their life and it seems different from what you remember, make note of it. Jot a quick email to yourself or something (perhaps in a folder marked “Just in Case”). That way if the story changes again you can recognize that you are being fed a partial truth if not a complete fabrication.
3. If someone is still paying for entertainment (cable / internet / smart phone / Netflix / GameFly / World of Warcraft), they obviously have money to pay for those things.
If you have donated to anyone that you have met through me and have not been publicly thanked, please let me know.
- 1 1/4 cups sifted all-purpose flour
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup butter
- 1 small package (3 ounces) cream cheese, softened
- 1/2 cup flaked coconut
- 1/2 cup apricot preserves
- 1 cup sifted confectioners’ sugar
- 1 tablespoon soft butter
- 1/4 cup apricot preserves
Sift together the flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt; cut in butter and cream cheese until fine. Blend in coconut and apricot preserves. Drop by teaspoonfuls onto ungreased baking sheet. Bake at 350° for 15 minutes, or until lightly browned. Cool and frost. Sprinkle with chopped nuts or more coconut if desired.
To make frosting, combine frosting ingredients and beat until smooth. Makes about 2 1/2 dozen.
- 1/4 cups grated sweetened coconut
- 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 1/2 cups rolled oats
- 12 tablespoons (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
- 1/4 cup packed brown sugar
- 1 large egg
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2/3 cup raspberry jam
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper.
Place the grated coconut in a shallow bowl and set aside.
Combine the flour, baking soda, salt and oats in a large mixing bowl.
To shape cookies, roll the batter between your hands to form balls the size of a large walnut. Roll in the grated coconut to coat, then place on the cookie sheet and flatten to 2 inch circles with the palm of your hand. With your thumb, make a depression in the center of each and fill with a generous teaspoon of jam. Bake 20 to 25 minutes, until lightly browned. Transfer to racks to cool.
So, I came up with an idea that I wanted to throw out there to everyone. Let me know what you think!
(Not sure how to post a video on here, so here is the link.)
I had heard somewhere that in the great Western films of old, the HERO would always wear a white hat, and the VILLAIN would wear a black one. This color difference made it easier for people to differentiate during the development of the storyline.Because the colors are so different (one being the lack of any color and one being the presence of every color), it made me think about the difference between HERO and VILLAIN. Honestly, a part of me feels that this is truly in the eye of the beholder.Yes, there are VILLAINs in stories that are truly outlandish. The power hungry insane scientist looking to drown the world by melting the polar ice caps, the unruly thug looking to take down the police and any so-called “do-gooder” by forming a mob. There are the jealous second sons of Kings wanting to dispurse of their brother and his offspring to ensure they rule the flourishing kingdom.