Once in a while, it can be pretty great to be wrong.
YouTube fame-chaser Josh Paler Lin recently filmed giving a homeless man $100 in order to secretly watch what he did with the money.
“Yeah, I’m just tryin’ to make enough to get me somethin’ to eat,” the man who called himself Thomas said.
Falling immediately into an old cliché, the homeless immediately hoofed it to a local liquor store. Soon enough, he emerged with large black bags, presumably filled with booze, but Lin kept filming and following him to see what developed.
From there the man went to a park, where he was quickly seen handing out food to other homeless people.
Lin found goodness, charity and compassion where he was looking for a cheap moment to film the weaker side of the less than fortunate. Rather than reaffirming a tired old cliché, Lin found a sincere man truly in need, and once that man lucked into good fortune, the first thing he did was share it with others equally in need.
Pleasantly surprised, and deeply touched, Lin approached Thomas one more time in order to confess his wrongdoing. You see, in this scenario, it turned out Lin was the only person with less than honest integrity and intentions. Fortunately, Lin was good enough to admit that and apologize to the man, still standing in the midst of fellow homeless people Thomas had just provided with food from Lin’s $100.
Lin had to ask:
Do you even know them?
Thomas replied simply:
In light of that, Lin told Thomas:
I feel I owe you apologies.
Thomas, humorously understanding the misguided assumption by Lin immediately, said:
Oh, you thought I was gonna get all smacked up drunk, huh?
Lin admitted, that yes, he thought Thomas was going to buy alcohol, but that he was shocked and very happy to see what Thomas, in fact, really did do with the money.
Thomas humbly said he just liked to help people. He stated:
There’s things money can’t buy. I get a happiness out of what I’m doing.
Chatting with Lin further, Thomas explained how he’d fallen on hard times in the first place, that he’d been living with his parents when they both suddenly died, which left him homeless.
Seeing a man going through presumably some of the hardest years of his life, living on the streets without a home who’d fallen into $100 only to turn around and share it with those in need around him, Lin was so touched and inspired by Thomas’ actions that he then gave the man another $100. Later, he also took him out to dinner and got him a nice hotel room for the night.
Lin has also gone on to set up an Indiegogo page in the hopes of raising $10,000 in order to help Thomas get his life back on track.
I’m so glad that I could witness and capture such a beautiful moment. This has to be one of the most amazing experience so far on this channel. I did not only just help a homeless man, but I actually met an incredible human being and a friend.
While there is some possibility skeptics will posit that Lin set the entire exchange up for views and gaining one more rung up on the Internet stardom ladder, I choose to believe the video is as organic as he claims it is, just as I choose to believe that offering some small bit of change to a panhandler gets them that bus ticket or slice of pizza. And for those joking that, yes, it’s for booze, with a twinkle in their eyes, feeling good for being honest about it, I still feel good, because I have the choice to help or not, and I do. I choose to help, even if it helps grab someone a bottle.
Because it makes me feel good to believe, to help. What business is it of mine beyond that? I’m not judgmental – go ahead and get yourself that bottle if that’s what you want, or that slice of pizza, or food for your fellow homeless. Like Thomas said, “There’s things money can’t buy,” and allowing yourself to believe in order to feel good is harmless. It builds a warmer spirit toward humanity. In short, it simply comes down to faith, and that shouldn’t be too hard to understand or expect in a country that fights so hard against the Constitution to convince the rest of the world that it is a Christian nation. Have faith that the ones you help do the right thing. If you can’t have faith, you can at least lose the judgment and just feel good that you helped someone, yes, even to grab a pint of Jack.
Laugh, and the whole world laughs with you.