07 December 2006


I've just been chugged.

"Chugging" is what those people with clipboards do on the streets, grabbing people and asking them to donate to whatever charity. I think the term comes from Charity-Mugging. I was recently chugged by a guy from Action for Medical Research (see the link at the top of my page for the baby petition and the link to the right for more information). He put forward such a strong case that I was happy to help. I am going to change the amount I'm donating every month, as it's a little more than I can really afford, but I was happy to sign up.

However, I've just been chugged again and now I feel guilty. I was wandering down Tottenham Court Road on my break from essay (I'm now back in the library) and a guy stopped me. I said I was in a hurry (sort of, I was hungry) and he said it wouldn't take long. I pointed out that I was a student and had no money and he asked could I not afford £1.25 a week? I said that I already supported a number of charities and anyway, I can barely afford to pay my rent this month. He looked awfully sympathetic and then complimented me on my bag.

"Nice bag," says he, "Where did you get it?"
"Thanks, " says me, "Oxford Street."
"Oh, very nice. Quiksilver I see?" says my friend.
"Oh well, have a nice day..."

Leaving me to wallow in my guilt. Blatantly his point was "Nice, sort of designer (in the very loosest sense) bag, and yet she says she can't give me £1.25 a week?".
No, I can't. I have a nice bag yes, but this is so I can carry the mulitude of books to lectures/library every day, along with all my dancing stuff. I give to three charities regularly (Amnesty, National Trust, AMR and Action for ME) and I run 5k for Cancer Research every year, last year raising more than £400. I can't afford to pay my rent (well I can, just, if I don't eat for a few weeks), and it's Christmas, and my credit card bill is due. I can't afford to give any more to charity. I really can't.

So why do I feel so guilty?


Liz said...

Some of us are just born guilty! Feeling it that is.

He was very rude. I'm sure he's not meant to do that.

You do far more than most of us so don't feel guilty: you're a little star!

Enjoy your day.

And GET YOUR ESSAY DONE!!!! (Sorry, that's the mother in me coming out.)

Clare said...

Essay is almost done. Almost. I just have to write 400 more words on an article that really isn't that long and probably doesn't have that much to say, and then the conclusion. It'll be fine. Though I will be taking my (broken) laptop home this weekend to get some more done...

Anonymous said...

Am I right in thinking chuggers get paid for what they do? It's that that 'allows' me to walk on by...except that I ride by on my mobility scooter. Not connected in my thinking, just the correct word!

Clare said...

Yeah they are paid, or at least they get commission.My usual response is to look down and hope they don't stop me, or to say "I already support", which is true, sometimes...