Most people wouldn’t trust the waitress with their credit card let alone a homeless man. Good Samaritan, Merrie Harris, was having a conversation with in SoHo when a homeless man, Jay Valentine, 32, came up and asked her for some change. Apparently Merrie is not in the habit of carrying cash on her so, she hands Valentine her credit card and says “Can I trust you?” and evidently she could because he came right back…
Harris lent her card to Valentine there Monday after he asked her for change. Most people who witnessed the act of extreme generosity doubted he would ever come back. But a short time later, he returned with the card, stunning many and earning Valentine the title of Most Honest Homeless Man in the City.
“What he did was no surprise to me,” Harris said yesterday. “People keep telling me, ‘Why would you talk to him and trust him?’ But are we only supposed to trust people we know? What would Bernie Madoff’s friends be saying?”
Valentine told The Post that he was surprised to be handed the card, but he never thought to take advantage of Harris’ generosity.
“I wasn’t tempted at all,” said the 32-year-old Brooklyn native. “She trusted me, and I didn’t want to violate that trust. I would never do that.”
Valentine said he has been homeless for a few years, since he lost his job at a real-estate company that had allowed him to sleep in the office. He said he now spends his nights in an Internet cafe whose staff allows him to sleep on their chairs. He said he was hungry and low on cash on Monday when he saw Harris standing with friends outside the restaurant.
“I asked her for change and told her I wasn’t working,” he said.
“She said she only had a card. She said, ‘Can I trust you?’ I said, ‘I’m honest, yes.’
“I went and bought a few things and came back and gave her credit card back, and everybody was surprised.
“I said thanks for trusting me. I guess she had a good sense of judgment. She knew I was trustworthy.”
Valentine said he bought deodorant, body wash, a pack of Nat Sherman cigarettes and Vitamin Water. It all cost about $25, he said.
Merrie Harris said she wasn’t worried and maybe she wasn’t because she could dispute the charges if he decided to go on a little shopping spree. However, Jay Valentine didn’t take advantage of the situation and only got what he needed…
How many of you would give your credit card to a stranger???