Saturday, December 10, 2005

Continuation of that bit I threw up in PA this week, I'm going to kill my subscription to Oxfam. Getting that picture in the mail was the end of it for me. Really.

I don't know how I could have been more specific when I said I don't want to know anything at all about the people I sponsored. I just didn't and don't want to know. I can't explain it, but it's more than I can handle.


I'm getting very emotional about this. I did NOT want ANYTHING at all to do with anything or anyone to whom I was making this anonymous donation. What do I get instead? A shitload of... shit. It's just shit. Gratitude is shit.

It fucking sucks. Charity sucks. I knew it when I signed on, but to have it come back and bite me on the arse like this - and pay for the damn privilege? Fuck that.

All I wanted was to help a poor Cambodian family, completely anonymously and relieve them of any need to feel gratitude (guilt, basically) for putting up their hands asking for help then actually getting it. The idea is to make the most of what you get with no thought for anything but your own future. That's about the best gift I can give and that's of what I was thinking when I started my subscription.

What the fuck are these people on anyway? Oxfam, I mean. Can you tell I'm a bit fucked off right now? How dare they fuck up my gift. Maybe not for whomever is on the receiving end, but my trust in Oxfam has been royally fucked in the arse. I know it's just a procedural thing to send these stinking updates to keep it all warm and fuzzy and make the donors think what they're doing is so wonderfully worthwhile.

I'm sure it is, but what does that make me? Just another name on some mailing list somewhere.

Now I want to run and hide away from these felching scumbags so they never find me again, never send me their stupid begging letters and load me up with guilt for something I haven't done.

My kids on the other side mean more to me than anyone else right now. I keep going on about them, but only because I love them all so much. Am I grateful for the time they accord me? In a way, yes. I'm probably more proud than grateful. I'm certainly amazed they let me in there. It's a fairly tight little circle but they're so incredibly acceptant and generous with their time and themselves. I consider myself very lucky to have encountered them.

It's what they give me which has the big impact. They give me the opportunity to share myself with them and they allow me the opportunity to share their day to day lives as well. It's extremely selfish of me to even be there, I know that. I have the unfair advantage of 20 years worth of experience which they do not yet have. I'm aware of that - always. On the other hand, because I consider them equals - which is to say, as human beings - and I won't behave condescendingly towards them because condescension is right up there with the most despicable things adults do to kids, that not only can I share with them and they with me, but at times I have the opportunity to share the benefits of the experience I have which they do not.

They actually let me care about them. That's incalculable to me. I know I sound like a broken record for saying it yet again, but how I can I compare anything I have with the gift those kids continue to give me?

Gratitude? Fuck gratitude. How about respect, how about trust, and, for what it's worth, not just a modicum of affection. Yes, that's why I love them all so much.


Eff said...

Good post.


My blog is ending. I shall be deleting it by the 20th. I suggest removing it from your links list. Thank you.

Rat said...

I would, but as you already know, I'm an arsehole. I'll leave the link where it is, but I'll shift the destination to God knows where.


I do that sort of thing. It's what makes me me and the internet so damnably inconsequential.

Eff said...

Fair enough. I have no copyright on it.

Actually, there is an organisation called the EFF. I suppose you could change the link to there.

Of course, the similarity is coincidental.

Cham said...

Even though the entry was posted the other day - I for one am glad you've made a decision about Oxfam.

Look, I get that you didn't want people to feel gratitude - but you of all people should know that one cannot help how others feel about other people and things.

Would you rather that people feel that the world owes them or that you owe them? (Whether or not you know them/they know you is irrelevant with what I'm trying to tell you, Paul.)

Rat: "Now I want to run and hide away from these felching scumbags so they never find me again, never send me their stupid begging letters..."

And of course, this is where your notorious Rat persona shall kick in...right? Give them hell and do one of the things you do best.


Rat: "...and load me up with guilt for something I haven't done."

What? What haven't you done? You chosen to do what you thought was for the better. It's not your fault people (at Oxfam) screwed up. No one can GUILT you into anything.

Like I've told you last week:

Stay you, Paul Ritchie.

Rat: "My kids on the other side mean more to me than anyone else right now. I keep going on about them, but only because I love them all so much."

Hey - even though you didn't ask for my opinion, I'm willing to share it with you, anyway...

Many adults tend to forget what it's like to be a kid. Most tend to blow kids off like they don't even matter. That's not cool!

I'm glad you're not one of those adults.

I know you feel lucky to have the chance to get to know them - but they are also the lucky ones...because you care about them.



Lea said...

Doey "Stay you, Paul Ritchie."

Chooun dear, I thought you said you'd rid yourself of this irritating woman.

Rat said...

If dopey ever comments here, they'll be the shortest lived blog comments in recorded history.