Saturday, January 28, 2006

Social Exclusion

Sometimes it feels like there's a whole other world out there that I'm not invited to. This isn't a fat issue (although I used to be excluded on two counts, at least it's now only one).

I know a bloke who does a lot of fundraising for injured rugby players and international development etc. He tends to get tickets to posh dinners and the like, which he flogs on to get some money for the charity. He also sometimes organises collections. It seems there's something on Sunday, which he's enigmatically mentioning on a message board I use. "Is anyone free on Sunday" etc etc. Not saying exactly what he wants people for, but saying that there's something on.

So, I reply. I've only got a run and some cleaning planned, so I replied. Bucket rattling would actually be my preference on the basis that I spent the remains of January's money on running gear earlier today and therefore have not much cash to get me through the weekend til pay day on Monday. I also still have car "issues" so was hoping for something nearby.

Well, it appears that it's a lunch event in Bradford. But there's a snag. It's couples only. He comes straight out and basically says that I'm not welcome if I'm alone. Part of me wants to sulk and say "I didn't want to go anyway" (actually, I didn't really if it involves spending too much cash, but I'd be willing to find out just how expensive it is before deciding), but throwing my toys out of the pram isn't particularly mature.

But then neither is this couples good everything else bad mentality. Why is my money and my existence deemed less worthwhile because I'm not all coupled up. Why do they assume that I'd want to go to a dinner and not speak to anyone other than the person I went with? I think a couple of my friends are going, so why am I not allowed to go alone and talk to them?

It's not something to get worked up about. I don't have my heart set on going (indeed I don't know exactly what it is at the moment anyway, so can't be too desperate to go). But it's just the tone of the message I got that annoys me more than anything. There are nice ways to say it, and ways that aren't quite so pleasant. Why not give me the info and let me decide for myself. Surely I can decide whether I'm willing to go alone or whether it's the sort of event where I'd feel awkward. If it's a money thing just say that the tickets come in pairs, and at least give me the option of paying for 2 but going alone. I wouldn't take it, but it wouldn't be quite so obvious.

Anyway, his response could well backfire. I was actually thinking it could be useful to go and talk to him, and discuss the possibility of doing a little fundraising for him based round the Berlin thing (because they are quite involved with German RL anyway). But if that's his attitude I might not bother. I don't know whether I do want to run for charity anyway, as my main motivation is to prove that I can do it for myself, but I had considered doing the charity thing because if I'm running anyway some good may as well come from it. I'm just a little less tempted now.

3 Comments:

Blogger Shauna said...

what a smug, insufferable arsehole. i wouldn't chuck my toys out of the pram, i'd chuck them at HIM. grrrr...

11:58 AM  
Blogger Vicky said...

Their loss not yours.

xxx

10:56 AM  
Blogger K said...

Well, indeed - that seems like a daft policy. I can KIND of see why you might want a rough gender-balance if it were a dance, say, but a lunch? (And even if it were a dance I don't think I'd be particularly bothered if I were the organiser.)

Quite apart from anything else, you'd have thought single people would have a bit more flexibility in the time they're able to give to causes, so it really makes no sense.

11:57 AM  

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