Tuesday, October 07, 2003

Getting Started…

It's unbelievable how things change and decisions are taken in a matter of seconds. Just few seconds ago I was drinking my morning coffee, looking through the window, thinking of nothing at all other than the great taste of this hot coffee. UNTILL I saw this old man crossing the street. He barely had hair, white hair, his face filled with old age signs and mouth contours signifying the loss of almost all his teeth.
He was carrying some big filled bags, and I must say from the way the man's back was curved that they were some really heavy ones. Taking a closer look I realized the bags were actually garbage bags. So the job of this old man was to transfer those bags into the main garbage tray to be picked up of the responsible ones on time. Now what really changed my morning routine today was the most awful scene any one could ever watch… live, or at least that's how I consider it.
While the poor old man was walking, one of the bags he was barely holding fell on the ground. He started trying to release one of his hands to grab it, doing his best to curve that old back more and more to get closer to the ground, and what happens when he does all that with those heavy bags over him?! He loses his balance!
So all the bags are suddenly on the ground. I can't even put into words the hopeless look and the facial expression he had, it was too sad to be expressed.
At the same time the bags fell, a young woman was walking towards the man, and when she was near him she gave him a disgusted look, tried to avoid getting close to the smelly bags with her nose held with her fingers, and simply went away!
A lot would suggest: "What do you expect her to do?!".
Many questions started crossing my mind ever since this whole thing took place, questions like: why didn't she actually help him instead of walking away and making him feel disgusting? if the bags were anything other than garbage, would she give him a hand? were the bags heavier for the YOUNG woman than they were to the OLD man? If that's the case, she could simply walk away without giving him that terrible look of disgust… or is it that helping an old poor man is considered inappropriate for a fine young woman? so what if it was a man, would he help even if the bags were still garbage ones? Or what is the problem?!
From what we hear and see everyday it is so simple to guess what most of the people would do if they're put in this very same situation: they'll all walk away. Some would make the man feel he's a disgusting creature, some will just walk without giving any impression, some will walk away with no outside impression but deep inside they'd love to help the poor man, but they didn't because of any excuse they'll make up to feel free of guilt( God, why did they have to be garbage bags… oh, if only I wasn't already late for work…etc). On the other hand I'm sure that there are some who might actually give the old man a hand for the sake of humanity.
He's a person after all, not to forget that the garbage is ours and not his, so he's doing us a favor, well, he does get paid to do that, it's true, but he's getting paid for something a lot of us are not ready to do in this neighborhood and many other neighborhoods. At that point I must admit that this little situation kept me thinking a lot, it might be silly for many people, but to me it did make a big change. Because it's not only the garbage man that so many of us would refuse to help, there is the one shouting for us to catch a thief who has just stolen her bag, a homeless man having no power to ask for help, a hopeless mother announcing the kidnap of her kid in all media resources… There are just too many people who ask for help and what do they get: nothing but watching. A lot believe that watching is enough, for the one asking looks bad, or seems to be lying, or looks dangerous, or is simply a stranger and we'd get ourselves in trouble and investigations for nothing. Even I've been through similar situations and unfortunately I was only watching in some. How sad it is for people to become so self-centered and full of fear like they are today. It got me scared of what would life look like in 10 years time or more, maybe even less. Would human beings lose the few principles and morals they've got now, or would they get back to the old good virtues they once had?! Let's wait and see… NO, that could never be the only way to know the answer, specially if we want our race to improve and create a safe surrounding for the coming generations. Then what should we do? We should act in any way possible. I've always wished to be a journalist discussing real good issues such as this, but it's sad that I never became one, and worse than that is the fact that I'm still looking for a job related to helping people and humankind to improve and never succeeded, but that doesn't mean that I should wait till I'm employed. What happened today urged me to get started, and I thought creating a blog of my own would do the trick, and here I am. To me this blog is the Aqua that will quench my thirst for sharing my thoughts with you, and will Cool the fire in my head every time I experience an unfair situation.
Hope it'll be the same to you as well…