Speaking of donations, often when I check out at Publix they ask me if I wish to donate a dollar to help feed the homeless. Sometimes I point out they could bypass the bureaucracy and just give me the money, since I am homeless. The reaction is always pretty sour. Never even a chuckle.
I do something similar with my alma mater's alumni office. When I was attending school, I dutifully applied for financial aid (which the catalog and recruiting brochures glowingly described as being so marvellously available) each year. And each and every year I was "regretfully informed" I was ineligible to receive any. As a result, I self-funded* my college education through a mix of student loans and some full
-time "part-time" jobs. Which made going to college a major financial struggle - plus the cause for many anxious and sleepless nights.
Periodically, I get a call from some chirpy newbie alumni office drummer, reminding me what a "great experience" I had going there. And how the education I received, plus all the valuable contacts I made, no doubt contributed towards what they are sure is my stellar success in life. And since it's only right that "we all" give something back...how much can we put you down for?
Every time I get one of those calls I tell them that I had applied for financial aid while I was there, and it's only right that I give back as well as I was given. When the idiot (who by now should have seen the setup coming from a mile away) casually asks: "And how much did you receive?" I reply: "I got nothing from the school. As in nada
. As in zero
. Please put me down for that amount."
This is one of those few times that I actually get snotty with someone and feel absolutely no remorse afterwards.
*On a positive note, at least it was possible to do back then. College tuitions were still low enough (relatively) that a modest 40-hour work week income, plus borrowing the max from the then guaranteed
State and Federal student loan programs, (and not living or eating very well for four years) would yield enough to pay for almost any college in those days.
Can't say that's the case any more. I doubt I'd be able to attend if I were 18 and planning on going today.