Drive-by Crank

Warning: this is a cranky post.

This weekend I drove by something that invariably drive me nuts: a lemonade stand. See photo:


Now, if you find lemonade stands wholesome and cute. If you think they are great ways to teach kids about work ethic and money, let me ask you a few questions.

  • Did the kids pay for the lemonade they are selling: No.
  • Did they make it themselves: No.
  • Did they carry that table to the curb: No.
  • Did they carry the lemonade to the curb: No.
  • Did they make a sign: Yes.
  • Will lots of cars stop and tell them to just keep the change: Yes.
  • Will their parents tell them how proud they are that they worked so hard: Yes.
  • Did I feel super creepy pulling over to snap this picture: Yes.

Next stop, at the intersection near my house they have put up cones for a fundraiser for the junior high swim team. See photo:


This type of fundraiser is common around where I live. They take a corner and ask for donations as you drive through the intersection.

Some questions:

  • Do I think swim club is a worthy cause: Yes
  • Does it stop up traffic: Yes.
  • Were there any junior high kids collecting money: No.
  • Was it their parents standing out there: Yes.
  • Is this the lamest, weakest, most effortless, creativity-free fundraiser imaginable: Yes
  • Is this actually just panhandling: Yes.
  • Did I give them any money: Hell no. Not a goddam dime.

Final question:

  • At the age of 42 have I become a cranky old man: Apparently, yes.

7 thoughts on “Drive-by Crank

  1. Good for you, Mike. I totally agree. Of course, I am a cranky old lady. The volunteer fire department up here panhandles at the main intersection in town on every holiday weekend. I call it panhandling because if a homeless person in Saratoga Springs did it on Broadway, they’d be arrested.

  2. There’s one worse than that that bugs me. High school (or younger) girls standing on the corner in skimpy outfits waving at all the cars to come into the car wash fundraiser. I’m not against the car wash, but there’s ALWAYS the girls associated with it.

  3. Mike,
    I love your blog…read it every day.
    Your honesty, self-depreciation and humor are great. Thanks for one of the highlights of my day.
    My comment specific to today’s post: was this a guest-blogger, ghost-written piece? Ummm, perhaps Matt Altier? Just to be clear, I absolutely agree with everything in this post. Just seemed to be channeling Mr. Happy?

  4. I feel your pain. While I never really gave lemonade stands a second thought, I hate the pan-handling fundraisers. It drives me super crazy when I see 10 or 12 year old cheerleaders running into trafffic to ask for change. Seriously – where are the parents? Oh yeah, at the next corner…

  5. As the parent of an entrepreneur I take in ridge that it is annoying to pass a lemonade stand. Try being tied to your home all day every weekend of the summer so that she can sell necklaces, wallets made out of ducktape, random things from her brothers room and lemonade. That is worthy of crankiness!

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