Posted by Emily , Friday, December 3, 2010 8:09 PM

So, I've come to the conclusion that I must have a target on my forehead, because people seem to think it's okay to proposition me for money in parking lots when I'm alone.  At night.  This has happened to me three times in my life, and twice in the past year!

When I was in high school, I was filling up my tires at a gas station.  The air compressor was behind the gas station, it was nighttime, and there were no lights.  A man came up to me and asked me for gas money.  I said "sorry" and immediately got in my car and drove away.  I paid for my gas in quarters at this time in my life anyway, so I really didn't have any money, but I was also freaked out.

Last year, I used to meet my carpool buddy in a slightly shady area of town in a grocery store parking lot.  One night, as I was getting in my car, I noticed an old beat-up white truck with a man sitting inside, and he looked like he was watching me.  I drove across the parking lot to the Subway to get a quick dinner, and as I was pulling out to leave, a woman walked in front of my car.  I rolled down my window and she explained that her daughter was stranded on the side of the road in some far-away town and she needed gas money.  She said her husband was the guy in the truck.  CREEPY.  I felt like they had cased me out or something. I said I didn't have any cash and she said "Well, can't you go to the ATM?" I thought to myself, "Are you freakin' serious?"  I said, "Sorry" and drove off.  This made me feel really guilty for some reason but at the same time, all of my senses were telling me to get away as fast as possible, and I never ignore my gut.

Two nights ago, I was leaving the mall and a guy was yelling really rudely, "EXCUSE ME, MAAM.  EXCUSE ME." Like an idiot I looked at him, when I should have just gotten in the car.  Crap, now I'm engaged in a conversation with this person. He said, "I'm not a homeless person I work at Target and I just ran out of gas..." I didn't really listen to the rest of his sentence.  I wondered "Why wouldn't you just ask a co-worker for a ride if that is the case? Use the phone at work?"  I said, "Well, maybe you should find someone to ask for help besides a woman who is alone."  He said something about everyone being mad and ignorant as I got in the car and drove away so fast I forgot to turn on my lights until I got on the road. 

As I'm typing these stories I feel like I sound like a horrible person, but I trust my gut and I don't want to get robbed/murdered/kidnapped.  I feel like these people should have better sense than to ask a lone woman for help when there are a lot of other people around, if they are really well-meaning and need help.  A normal person would go into one of the many surrounding businesses and call a family member, or ask someone who was not alone.  I have some friends whom I worry about because they are way too trusting.  As for me, I always lock the doors!