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Arts and Entertainment

Video: Prankster Shocked When Homeless Man Spends $100 Donation On Others

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A YouTube prankster decides to give a homeless man in Orange County $100, then follow him to see how he spends it.

Josh Paler Lin typically does cheesy prank videos, like pretending to trip and knock a tooth out or pretending to take drugs at the gym.

In this particular video, Lin approaches a homeless man who is asking for money on an offramp in Fullerton, the L.A. Times reports. He gives the man—identified only by his first name, Thomas—$100. The man immediately tears up and asks permission to hug Lin. The two embrace, then part ways.

Lin and his friend Cody, who is shooting the video, follow Thomas to see how he chooses to spend the money. They track Thomas to a nearby liquor store. Lin does not go into the store, so doesn't see what Thomas buys at first. The pair then trail Thomas to a park, where it is revealed he's purchased a huge bag full of food, which he is now distributing to others.

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"I feel like I owe you an apology," Lin says to Thomas. "You went to a liquor store earlier... I thought you were gonna buy alcohol or something."

"But there's things money can't buy," Thomas replies. "I get a happiness out of what I'm doing."

Thomas explains to Lin how he became homeless in the first place. He was living with his parents, who were both ill and receiving hospice treatment that their insurance didn't entirely cover. Thomas said he also quit his job to care for them. Eventually, his father died from cancer and then his mother died from kidney failure two weeks later. Then the condo they were living in was sold, rendering Thomas homeless for the past four months.

Thomas says that a lot of people are are like him—simply victims of circumstance—and that a lot of good people wind up homeless.

Lin started an indigogo campaign to help Thomas get a fresh start. So far, the campaign raised $63,780—well over its original goal of $10,000.

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