We all have tough times, but some instances are truly dire. In a recent online discussion, people share things that reveal you’re truly broke and need additional resources.
Paying Bus Fare In Pennies
We all experience it from time to time. You need to get somewhere and have to scrounge some cash together.
One commenter shared, “I was subletting a place and needed bus fare to get to work that day, so I searched every couch cushion and coat pocket in the hopes that I could find enough to get there. I ended up finding a ton of pennies, so I paid the bus fare in pennies. I was 30 cents short but the bus driver just gave me a transfer and waved me in.”
They continued, “The first customer of the day tipped me like $5 on their coffee and I’ve never been so happy in my life.”
It’s the small things that make you happy.
Hoping Lottery Tickets Give You Christmas Money
Playing the lottery can be fun. There’s nothing like winning cash, especially when you’re in need.
One person explained why they played the lottery in a previous experience. They shared, “I bought scratch tickets in hopes to win money to buy Christmas presents when I was 18. I didn’t want anyone to think I had money problems at the time so I spent $10 on a scratcher and won $500. I don’t know how but it was enough for car insurance and presents.”
Perhaps, in times like this, it’s best to be transparent with your family and not risk losing what little you do have.
Calling In Sick Because You Don’t Have Gas
Gas is expensive. For some people on the edge, it can be even more problematic.
One commenter adds, “[I] called in sick on Wednesday because I didn’t have enough gas money to drive to work but one more time, which I waited til Thursday to do, because that was payday.”
While understandable, maybe asking a nearby co-worker to drive you to work would allow you to not lose out on income due to gas expenses.
Eating Costco Samples For Dinner
Dealing with people hoarding Costco sample tables can be frustrating. However, maybe a few of the people are doing it because they’re truly in need.
One person says, “[I] walked into a Costco with an expired membership card and had samples for dinner. I made the rounds a few times.”
It’s good to keep that in the back of our minds, especially during times of frustration when you can’t go down an aisle because people are waiting for the free sample.
Check kiting, or writing checks between two institutions when you don’t have money at either, is highly illegal.
One commenter revealed, “[I] didn’t know that was fraud till my bank had a chat with me.”
Taking advantage of the float is one thing. Doing it with money you don’t have reveals you need another course of action.
Buying Ramen With Multiple Debit Cards
Ramen is notoriously cheap. It’s a fantastic go-to when you’re short on cash. Spreading out payment on multiple cards usually isn’t a need.
One person explains, “[I] bought a case of ramen noodles at the self checkout at Walmart with 4 different different debit cards that each had less than a dollar on them. You can make partial payments at Walmart self checkout and nobody has to know how broke you are. Me and my 3 kids ate for the next 2 days.”
Shame aside, at least the family was able to eat for several days.
Using a Flashlight As a Headlight
What happens if you’re on your bike and the headlight goes out? It makes sense to use a flashlight, assuming you have one, to see your way home. Doing it once is one thing, as a practice is something else.
One commenter explains, “My motorcycle headlight broke, so I started riding around with a flashlight in my mouth. True story. I was young, and very, very dumb.”
Stay safe out there, friends.
Selling Plasma For Grocery Money
Donating plasma for money is a popular way to make money on the side. I did it myself to get money to pay off debt.
Numerous commenters explain they did it to get grocery money. However, one person adds their grateful perspective, saying, “That plasma kept my mom alive long enough to know she was going to have a granddaughter before she died from blood cancer. I’ll always be thankful for plasma givers.”
It can literally be a lifesaver, so don’t feel shame for needing to do it.
Steal Rolls Of Toilet Paper
Toilet paper is obviously a necessity, but not everyone is always able to purchase it. Some take to stealing it when they can’t make ends meet.
One person adds, “[I] stole a roll of TP from a public restroom because I was out and couldn’t afford any. It was an extra roll. I didn’t take the one in use and leave none behind, lol. That’s just mean.”
Outside of 2020 and 2021, it’s best to reach out to food banks or local charities when in need of TP.
Eating a Hotel Breakfast As a Non-Guest
You can eat well at a hotel breakfast. Some enterprising individuals act on that and go dine at a hotel to get what they need.
One commenter explains, “I just realized you can just do this and almost no one would probably question you about it. No one is actually checking for key cards or anything when you go down for breakfast.”
Food not being used is likely going to be tossed, so no harm, no foul, one might suppose.
Switching Tags At the Thrift Store
Thrift stores are usually very affordable. For some, they can be too expensive. One person adds why sometimes that is the case for them, sharing, “I switched the tags on some shoes at a thrift store because I desperately needed some new shoes and couldn’t afford the $5 they were asking.”
The creativity is admirable, but ask what assistance they might be able to provide next time.
Many people turn dumpster diving into an art. Some do it because they have few other options.
One commenter says, “Nothing wrong with dumpster diving. It reduces waste and is good for the environment. I know people who are middle class who do it as more of a political thing.”
Indeed, there’s nothing wrong with it. You never know what you’re going to find.
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This thread inspired this post.