Tuesday, August 4, 2009
Journalism with a :-(
My sister will come in September to visit. By the way, it happened again :-). I finish emailing someone this message: “I’ve got no life until mid august when school’s out. Work and volunteering keep me tired. But there are rewards, for sure”.
Next email in my inbox, my sister. Click. It reads: “I want to say something. I’m totally over-worked, and it’s only August 4th!!!!”
Eeery spooky funky cool :-)
Anyway. The man says to me: “ you know how they say the road to hell is paved with good intentions? The opposite is true. The road to heaven is paved with bad intentions”.
He’s someone I wanted to interview, a war-child, lived in Beirut all his life. I say to him, “I feel like I’m using you. I don’t know if you want to tell your story to the world, to people you don’t know”.
Him: “Of course I do. As long as I get to say it. Not someone else says it for me”.
Me: “ It’s part of my research and work to do this. But I want you to be comfortable.”
On and on. Kept apologizing. Felt like I’m using him to forward my career. He’s had journalists/ngo workers/researchers come to him by the dozens from all over the world for interviews. He’s a “hot market commodity” it seems. I wonder. Did I go to him for the same reasons? Why do I feel so bad? Like a grimy rat digging up a good research topic. Yuk!
So he says to me, “the road to heaven is paved with bad intentions. Not to say you’re using me, but there’s nothing wrong with looking out for yourself, kid, that’s life”.
I feel like poop. Still. :-(
All I wanted was to help. To get him to say his story to the world so I can sit and watch him heal… :-(