You know the old rule, never loan money to a friend. I'm not sure that's always true, at least not here at the Jersey Shore.

We are unique people here at the Jersey Shore. We are people who have mastered "neighbor helping neighbor", especially as we continue the Sandy recovery, so I'm not sure sure this rule applies to us.

I have done it and never had a problem with it. No lost friendships and no hard feelings. I'm sure I 've been lucky in that regard, and I'm just as sure that there are other stories that don't end as happily.

So that's why I ask you. When the time comes that a friend is in need, can you say no? It certainly isn't easy, but is it the smart thing to do? Is it a good or bad idea to loan money to a friend?