Social Media and the paradox of giving

Oh my! What a day in a nerd’s life. Sunday, that coveted day for rest. Wishful thinking for a young hustler. Against my wish, I had two table-spoon of Benylin cough syrup last night to rid me of the biting cough. Its effect I knew beforehand so the drowsy feeling, slowness and hunger that have characterized my morning are of no surprise. Not like it takes away the irritation though. Neither is it an excuse for my absence from Church. My religious life is an issue for another day.

And so it was that I lazed around the bedroom rolling from one side of the mattress to another in between perusing my BlackBerry Smartphone. My flirtatious apps were my companion as I swiped my finger across the screen switching between Twitter and BBM for trending conversations to join in (crash in). BBM had little to offer besides the regular change of display pics by self-obsessed contacts mainly of the female folk…no disrespect ma’ams :). So, I found my way to Twitter where a number of tweets caught my attention. First, Tweep @freakiChinedu had a tweet that read, “yay! Dubbie… * lights the blunt up… tilts the blinds… * Later Tweeps!”.

Okay, an opportunity to educate an emotional derelict”, I thought. I mean, if I couldn’t go to Church, least I could do was be a Good Samaritan to a lost tweep. What more, the topic of Good Samaritan itself had been prompted by a tweet from @HRM_Modupe –“ the aim of that parable was to show how a Christian should behave. And the good samaritan was the reference”. So, I figured, time to preach against drugs. Well, what followed was an exchange of Tweets where the hommie tried to convince me that just because it’s grass doesn’t mean it’s drugs. I did try though to argue my case even going as far as bringing Majek Fashek into the fray to no avail.  In the end, I let the hommie be. Something even more interesting was trending from one of my favourite tweeps. Who better than @omojuwa :). Something that could suffice for a much needed Sunday sermon. It had to do with ‘Giving’. It felt different in an exhilarating manner. One because, those kind of sermons I recall only hearing in Church when it was time for ‘Offering’. Perhaps, in hindsight from a now lost soul, something about those Offering times smirked of suspicion; a manipulative plot of a sort. It was usually a time reserved for the Bishop’s wife who would then spend only a few minutes quoting choice verses from the Holy Book to support giving. I often wondered about the process that went into digging out those verses so much that other verses quoted throughout the entire service hardly had the same effect on my heart. It almost felt like a stab and many have been known to give out their life savings in those moments. Whether the same words sooth the sore feeling of regret afterwards is another issue all together.

And so, @Omojuwa went on and on about the need to give and help those around us. The more he tweeted, the more I thought about the subject of Giving relative to my life and those around me. I thought about Rosy whom I’d spent the night with while on a business trip in Abuja. How she’d riddled me with stories about how she was spreading her legs so she could GIVE in support of her mom. I remember thinking to myself, “Oh my, I should just hand over my hard earned thousands and leave my pants on”? Easier said than done. Then those mental beings appeared carrying the tags, conscience angel and flesh(y) angel”.

That’s a good thing Nerdie. Just hand her the 10, 000 naira, drop her by Gimbiya street where you picked her and call it a night”, said Conscience angel.

Hmmm, ode! Format! Are you a learner? Na today? What would the 10,000 naira do to help her situation in the long run? You think she’ll suddenly put some locks between her legs after you hand her the money without touching her? Hahahaha…”  That was Fleshy Angel responding with a roaring laugh.

Guess what”?  Fleshy added

What”? I asked.

She’ll simply jump into the next four-wheeler that stops by her once your maga-self drops her off. And oh, if you’re going to be that stupid by yielding to what Miss Goodie Goodie angel is telling you, be sure to buy her one of those gowns worn by nuns in place of the skimpy and revealing wear that drew you to her in the first place”.

Hmm, I thought. I noticed my head swirl to the direction of my conscience angel as if asking her to say something to counter her more persistent counterpart. She didn’t appear to say anything so I turned my mental attention back to fleshy.

What you could do is give-in-kind like friends-with-benefits do. Give your body what it needs in exchange for what she needs to help her mom. Just add something on top. The rest is history”. She went on. The point had been made about Giving.

I was snapped back to life by an alert on my BlackBerry. I flicked back to the tweets about giving. Surely, I could do something to help another. If I didn’t have money to give then I could at least give of my time. I tried to relate it to my professional career. How could my developing apps for kids be repackaged to giving? True, I ask for a token in exchange for my apps. But that’s because I’m offering value. Besides, how could I necessarily give to Siju and the kids if I wasn’t getting from customers? It made logical sense. Or better still, it made survival sense. As a backing, @Omojuwa’s  tweet – “Don’t tell your wife “I don’t have money for you, Omojuwa said we should start giving the poor.” No! Fix home first” – had rightly advised against acting or quoting his statement out of context.

All this and more had me spell bound as I lay on my bed until I heard a loud bang on the door. “Who could that be on a rainy Sunday Morning”? I stalled for some minutes before opening up. Behold, sitting on my door knob was the PHCN bill of 53,000 Naira! The government was asking which in itself carries the threat of disconnection. Reality, I thought. Oh, well…such is life.

One thought on “Social Media and the paradox of giving” by getto (@technobayo)

  1. Quite an interesting ramble through the topic of giving, @technobayo.

    Personally, I would rather give someone an opportunity to earn money than give them money directly.

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