February 17th, 2012

Arty Evil Icon

neither a borrower nor a lenter be

I am not giving anything up for Lent, but I am going to take up something I meant to do as a New Year's Resolution. I am going to learn how to hack the internet so that every time someone prefaces a statement, whinge or question with "I know it's only a first world problem, but..." fifty quid automatically disappears from their bank account and appears in the coffers of Oxfam.

I can't see how making this statement can convey anything but a combination of self-righteousness and false modesty. It vaguely reminds me of my mother insisting I should finish my dinner because 'there are children starving in Africa'. At least my mother was trying to get me to eat well; the only point of this pronouncement is to make the speaker look good, surely? Or do the people saying genuinely believe that saying this shows some sort of solidarity with the occupants of the world's sweatshops and refugee camps?