Dear Karma Cleanser:
I have a question about greed, trust and doing the right thing. I am part of a circle of women, many of them in their late 30s or 40s, and all with successful husbands and/or well-paying jobs. They are good people underneath it all, even if we sometimes call ourselves the "Wisteria Lane Girls" because of some of our "indiscretions."
Recently one of these women recommended that I start to use her cleaning lady. A young, rather naïve, Korean girl showed up at my house the next week. After she cleaned for three hours, I asked how much she charged. I thought her rate would be about $80, the same as my last cleaning lady. She said, "$30," which just felt like highway robbery on my part. I gave her $50 and said she should charge all her clients more.
Now, my generosity has come back to bite me in the fanny. My friend says the cleaning lady has raised her rates, and my friend is mad at me. I just feel like I was doing the right thing. Should I have kept my big mouth shut, or isn't it a risk for bad karma to take advantage of a poor young girl who doesn't know any better? I am now considering using a different cleaning service altogether.
-- The Stemware Does Sparkle
If your "Desperate" lady friend will screw over the help, she'll screw you over, too. We're not saying you should pass on the bargain house cleaning, nor should you ditch the friendship, but consider this an eye-opener on how things really work on Wisteria Lane. Kudos to you and your karma for paying with mindfulness.
Dear Karma Cleanser:
In response to "A Loner, Again," the person who posted the sex ad on Craigslist, I will say I'm shocked that she (or he, who knows?) was able to find a living, breathing person using an online ad at all. I've posted ads online on and off again for the last two years. So far, I have not yet met a single person through it. I have started to realize that there's only about 10 or 11 actual, living people who use the Internet in my city (in that regard, anyway) and they are all liars, or thieves, or both.
When I very first started going to online sex sites, it seemed like I was chatting with a lot of pretty hot and interesting people. Now, everyone just wants drugs, or to come over and take advantage of you. Just my two cents worth on this very common and bad problem.
-- A Smart Lurker
Maybe there's no polite way for us to say this, but darling, you really need to get out of the house more. Granted, we don't know what city you live in, but it's hard to fathom less than a dozen Internet users in even the most backwater boondocks these days. Perhaps the negativity you bring to the keyboard just gets reflected back to you on screen.
Been bad? firstname.lastname@example.org.