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Comments made by MamaBear

Putting ‘Canvass’ Claims To The Test

I had an experience with this group long before Tom Fudge wrote this blog post. And I have to say I was relieved when I read that Target was working to get these people to stop bothering their customers. Before I go on, I want to say that it is not the issue that bothers me (I happen to support same-sex marriage). Second, I don't like ANY of the solicitors in front of Target (there seems to be a new petition every time I go there).

But Canvas is THE worst of all of the Target solicitors. One day, when I walked out of the store, a man asked me if I support same-sex marriage. I told him that I don't normally like to engage in political discussion, but that this issue is important and I do support same-sex marriage. He went on with his pitch and asked me to give money. He showed me some marketing materials, which were unprofessional looking. I had never heard of this group, so I declined to make a donation. I thanked him for his time, and if it had ended there I would have left with good feelings.

But then he proceeded to harass me about making a donation or volunteering. He started to talk about suicide among gay teens and said that if I didn't donate I would be personally responsible if a gay teen committed suicide.

That crossed the line, especially since I was in support of their cause I was just not sure if I should donate my money to THAT PARTICULAR ORGANIZATION.

I hope Target wins the lawsuit so I can shop in peace.

March 27, 2011 at 9 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Remembering The Days When Kids Ran Wild

Of course LA has canyons and places to explore. I should have been more specific. My neighborhood in the San Fernando Valley was a flat concrete jungle. Huge, wide, heavily trafficked streets were lined with two-story sprawling apartment buildings (with pools in the center) and strip malls. The closest thing to "something to explore" was our neighborhood park. According to my mom, there was a lot of drug activity and I wasn't allowed to go alone.

My mom took me out of our neighborhood to "explore," but I thought this conversation was about sending kids outside to play without any adult supervision. I'm just explaining why that didn't happen for me. It wasn't because my parents were older, highly educated helicopter parents. They weren't any of those things.

November 5, 2010 at 9:17 a.m. ( | suggest removal )

Remembering The Days When Kids Ran Wild

I grew up in the '70s in LA. There was no running wild. A boy in my neighborhood -- that I played with often -- was killed in a hit and run accident on his way to school. After that, I was never, ever allowed to walk anywhere by myself -- or with other kids.The Hillside Strangler was all over the news. It turned out that one of the guys was a frequent guest in the office where my mom worked. He seemed nice.

My mother was a young single mom. I'm sure you can imagine that a young single mom in the '70s was not affluent. If you see the world through her eyes, the world was a scary place, and kids needed to be protected. Can you blame her?

It could be that we lived in a city. We didn't have canyons and fields and places to explore. We had traffic and smog and if we stayed out too long playing in the summertime our lungs would burn from the pollution.

That said... I had a wonderful childhood. Lots of friends and family around all the time. We even knew most of our neighbors. One of my best friends today was my childhood neighbor.

November 4, 2010 at 5:16 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

'Underwater' Homeowners Try To Catch A Breath

We bought our house before this mess too, and I agree with Ucitymom that I am more lucky than smart. HOWEVER...

When we bought our house in 2002, prices were already starting to rise. I remember doing all sorts of math and planning. What do we do if the market tanks? How much do we need to have saved? Do we plan to move in the next 10 years (if the market falls apart, we would not be able to)? What if I lose my job? We were childless at the time, so we bought a house that could accommodate a growing family -- in case the market tanked and we couldn't move before kids. We never took money out of our house, since it didn't feel like "real" money to us. We figured that if we wanted to move, we'd need the money as a down payment anyway.

That said... I also agree with gaiamoth. I have a lot of empathy for the people who suffered in this mess. BUT I'm not sure Greg is one of them. Why would someone with an unstable income spend a huge amount of money on a house and then sink $150,000 into it? Couldn't he have cut back on his budget just a bit and bought a 2,500 square foot house. That's huge by my standards! 3,700 feet? That's ostentatious, and I have a hard time feeling sorry for someone who didn't live within his means. I'm a little resentful that all of us will end up paying for his mistake if a short sale is approved (the cost is always passed on to consumers). But if he's not bailed out, the housing market will be even more unstable and we'll pay for it that way too. All because a guy bought a mansion that he couldn't afford.

Alejandro is the kind of person I can have empathy for. He stretched to buy a modest home. How could he have known the market would collapse? Sure... I could argue that he stretched beyond his means too. But he was stretching for the basics. It's hardly the same.

November 2, 2010 at 4:27 p.m. ( | suggest removal )