One night I was having a friendly conversation with a fellow American named Lila at a local bar. We formed an immediate bond as we expressed our shared objection to the recently formed relationship between John Mayer and Taylor Swift.
“Tay-Tay, you can do so much better.”
After awhile, following the natural flow of conversations, the topic drifted from celebrity dating to the plight of Western investments in overseas development. While most of the foreigners working in development abroad quickly become critical of any Western solution to global poverty, Lila had avoided that cynical disillusion and maintained an admirably enthusiastic attitude– she even had her own idea on how to combat child hunger.
And so is the title of my post: lard and hate exchange.
Lila looked at me earnestly in the eye, she was such a sweet person, but not the sharpest tool in the shed:
“I kind of have this idea…an idea to start a program that will help with the starving children around the world.”
I nodded my head for her to continue- it was obvious she had reservations about this idea, but I could tell she was really excited about it.
“I want to start a kind of pen pal program- where fat kids in America are paired up with starving kids around the world…I’d start it off in India of course. Every time a fat kid in America loses a pound, a starving child would gain a pound! That way fat American kids would be motivated to lose weight…because they would be like…saving lives!”
I scanned her face as covertly as I could, trying to figure out if she was joking or not. But after a second, it was clear that she was being completely sincere.
In my head I imagined the obese youth across America at mcdonalds sponsored weight-loss-atons.
I pictured my pilot friend Amy flying across the ocean in a plane full of lard cargo.
I envisioned dozens of starving children waiting in christmas-like anticipation for their generous gifts.
I imagined some elaborate new apparatus for fat transplantion ( just a liposuction machine in reverse)
Of course, I didn’t think Lila meant the actual excess fat would somehow be directly inserted into the malnourished children, but I really couldn’t get that image out of my head. I tried my hardest to respond seriously to her proposal,
I knew I wasn’t a good enough actress to effectively feign any more support for Lila’s grand scheme to save the world. And not wanting to crush her genuine spirit by explaining the many logistical and ethical problems surrounding her idea, I quickly tried to think of a new topic to talk about.
But as it often happens with me and others plagued with an inherent awkwardness, my mind became blank at the moment I direly needed a new topic.
I blurted out the first thing I could,
Then I remembered- we already talked about that.
I didn’t want her tot think I was intentionally shifting the conversation. I had to make it seem that my hate for John Mayer was so intense that it would naturally come up in conversation twice in one night. So with firey passion in my eyes,
Fortunately for me, as I said above, Lila is an extremely nice person and after being a little creeped out by my irrational hatred for John Mayer, she switched to a new train of thought, and I did not have to share my true feelings about her idea.
In conclusion, the events that unraveled that one night at the bar really got me thinking- What am I doing to make a difference in the world? How can I help? What role can I play? Then it clicked!
I decided to start new charity. Do you hate John Mayer?!?!?! If so, please donate your hate to my charity- I will then transfer that hate to all the repressive governments of the world with the hopes that they will stop being so darn mean!