Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Volunteer Brigands

Losing humor is a rare occasion for me but tonight I so wanted to be The Grinch who wishes he brought an Uzi.

I decided to go to the Mega Tent at the DepEd complex, a few of blocks from where I live, to participate in the Human Chain project. If you are the exceptional species who was immune to the viral Facebook infection let me explain. The Human Chain was an initiative calling on volunteers to help distribute relief goods to typhoon evacuees currently housed at The Ultra. Some five hundred families sleeping on the cold concrete floor of the oversize gymnasium needed help. Volunteers will fall in line and pass on packed goods from the Mega Tent to The Ultra, recreating the human equivalent of the Great Wall. Think analog conveyor belt with hands.

Anyway the Facebook call was somewhat ominous. It said “Wear Green.”

I work in the creative industry and green means something else. On the metaphorical note it could mean life, hope, a newbie or soiled thoughts.

In this case it meant mingling with well-scrubbed, well-fed, folks with accented twangs, and cute beyond belief citizens of a certain university infamous for having Parking as the most difficult academic course. (Hello high school life, Misterheuge!)

I was in awe. People who would ordinarily consider lifting a broom beneath their dignity or doing menial jobs a fate one stoplight away from oppression or death were busily packing goods, animatedly bantering, not minding inhaling the CO2s of many jologs sweating, laboring next to them in the crowd. If this is not the closest thing to World Peace, I dunno what is.

So what got my goat?

The fucking grandstanders.

While majority of the well-intentioned Green People were frantically working along plebeians, a number of Green Dorks seem to have wandered in by mistake. Instead of toiling for the sake of others they were busy like, talking, like, you know, while busily preening, like with their friends, posing along neatly organized bags of goodies making peace signs and smiling like demented versions of Spongebob Fancypants!

I didn’t see some of them lift a finger to help; the only fingers they own that were busy were the ones glued to the shutters of iPhones and digital cams.

I wished I had access to a megaphone so I can yell: “This is not fucking Disneyland!”

What a bunch of retards. There is no doubt those images are gonna clog facebook later along captions on how they helped packed those goodies.

Huy poseurs, mahiya naman kayo! You are ruining the profound intentions of people with genuine motive to help. You are giving non-Green gawkers more ammunition against you by acting like bratty layabouts.

The Human Chain had a good turn out and excellent achievement. It restored our collective faith in human capacity for empathy/sympathy and for one moment you forget demographic divides for a common goal. According to the organizer it started as a joke but to the amazement of everyone, it snowballed into a tremendous response in the time of needs of others. Kudos to you people! This rotten country needs more of you!

All it takes is a few charming folks to foul the mood. I shudder thinking of the very likelihood that those PseudoVolunteers will end up running for public office.

Before that happens give me an Uzi.


red the mod said...

Pretension has many names. In this case it hides in the guise of volunteerism. May their kind not flourish. These are the likes that give the word 'educated' a most unpalatable connotation.

Sincerity in the aid of your fellowmen never required the validation of acknowledgment. Despite these few misguided souls, let us choose to see the fact that the objectives of the event were met, no thanks to them. But, to the countless, including you sir, that chose to help without the promise of recognition.

MisterHeuge said...

There will always be those space-occupiers. Oh well. Bring a gun next time.

Good to know you're helping out. =)

Anonymous said...

you have an update?
you have an update.

ill be reading this
when i get back from work


bubblewrap said...

It's sad that you had to see that instance. Rest assured, everyone contributed in our goal to send relief goods to Ultra. Nonetheless, thank you for volunteering in our 9-day relief center :)

loudcloud said...

bubblewrap - if you are one of those neat folks who organized the human chain, hats off to you!

yes i'd say everyone contributed to the success of the human chain initiative and it was a great success despite the threat of a drizzle everyone forged on and stood their spot to pass on the goodies.

i did volunteer/donate elsewhere but many friends were at the megatent from day one. so i at the time i decided to join megatent i was surprised people still showed up despite it being many days after the volunteer-ism rage.

excuse my outburst here, it just ticks me off when certain people can't get beside themselves and focus on what needs to be done instead of doing cute gambits.

congratulations to the human chain. i'd gladly do it again should there be a call.

and thanks for leaving a message in my warped blog.

loudcloud said...

red - i'm fine now. my annoyance tics under medication control LOL

MH - for someone supposed to uphold the LAW you're encouraging homicidal acts. hahaha!

XG! - wow you dropped by! :)

MisterHeuge said...

Law, shmlaw.

John-D Borra said...

Hi! This is John-D Borra, Executive Director of Megatent. I just came across your blog entry. I collapsed from sheer physical exhaustion after The Human Chain Project, as we had been running the Megatent Relief Center 24/7 since last Monday.

It is my distinct pleasure to inform you that the spirit of volunteerism (sprinkled with that little bit of shameless photo-mugging that accompanies most youthful endeavors) will continue next week. We're conducting a medical mission for the evacuees housed in Kapitolyo, Pasig. For more information, kindly contact me at +639176306154. You may also reach me through Facebook or my blog.

Thanks for helping us out at the relief center! Your generosity and dedication goes beyond our ability to properly show our appreciation. Take care!

loudcloud said...

Thanks for leaving a comment John!

As long as my merciless schedule will permit, I'd gladly volunteer again. I'll monitor your blog for specifics/details regarding next week's schedules.

"Your generosity and dedication goes beyond our ability to properly show our appreciation."

don't mention it. we should all do something worthwhile and not to show up and harvest merits or recognition.

all the best to the human chain project!

Anonymous said...

hi.. just dropping by here... have a nice day!