Altruism. It's the way of holy people. It's when you give rather than take. I walked out of my home recently because a member of my family lost theirs in a fire. I felt good doing that. I just up and walked off. Here- you and your family- have my place I'll just go stay somewhere else.
Now I thought that was pretty good of me. I felt good being so ---altruistic---- and I thought that when I die this thing would certainly give me those extra angel points in the eyes of the big bloke and therefore elevate me to a fairly comfy cloud. I was all cozy with my goody two shoes act. But apparently I was just profiteering according to my dear sibling's text messages over the last few days after they moved on
-- Whooooaaaa! You think. What the fuck? Well lets go back a couple of months:
Mobile Phone rings: "Peter. My house has burnt to the ground!" Shit!. So off I goes to witness the devastation. Turns out it was an exaggeration but there was sufficient damage to render the house as uninhabitable. Then I thinks. My house is not big enough for the whole of their family and me and daughter. I got it! Me and my daughter will move out instantly so they have a roof over their heads and we will stay elsewhere because we have somewhere else to stay this being my girlfriend's place which is pretty crowded anyway so what's another two?
So all's well. I am the hero to one and all. They can get their house fixed. We will live elsewhere for the time being. We had to simply jump out of our home at a moments notice. This is not an easy thing to do I can tell you.
One would think that the story would be all good from there. But no!
You see they lost their 7 dogs in the fire. A terrible thing. Heart wrenching. But count 'em. Seven! So of course the first thing you do is to replace what has been lost. It helps in the grieving. So they gets a pup. A big pup. Didn't wait for a more appropriate time to do this- like when they get back home No. Didn't sort of ask if I was cool with that in my home. No. They just go out and gets a big, no, huge pup. One that will piss and shit all over my home and chew everything it can find and rip fly wire and scratch newly painted surfaces and leave huge turds all over the place for me to discover. But you know what? I didn't complain. Aren't I the saint-- true altruism eh? Then they gets another dog because they felt sorry for it and it was from their previous dogs litter so in comes another dog. A barking little horror. And this dog hated me. Every time I entered my own house the thing barked at me and shot out from under the table trying to nip me. Oh. I forgot there was another cat in the mix. It used one of its nine lives and survived the fire. And of course it had to sleep in my bed which I left for them and it had to have its litter tray nearby next to my bed. See? It is all painting a picture here isn't it? Even blind Freddy can see what's going on. I am being taken for granted.
The risk one suffers when they do altruistic things is that they can be taken for granted.
So here it is. My small home is stacked to the roof with people and animals. My own poor cat is relegated to the gallery area at the front of my house. It is so crowded out with interlopers that he withdrew and would not enter his old home. So he sat hissing, pissing and shitting in my once pristine and beautiful art gallery for several months. He did what any faithful cat would do. He entered the resistance movement and his weapons were chemical. He figured if he worked hard enough at stinking them out with his piss and shit they would not be able to stand it and they would leave. Oh the stink of it now. Cat's piss! Ahhhh! The problem is they retaliated with far more weaponry in the form of a huge pissing pup and several other animals to boot.
Any ways earlier on the family make me an offer to pay some rent. Well they directed their insurance company to pay me some rent. It sounded like a fair deal. I felt I should be paying something for my temp accommodation at my girlfriend's so this would pay for that and leave me some over even which is all good. Here was my mistake. I accepted to receive rent from them , well from their insurance I say again- no cost to them. But I will go into that further on later. The thing with receiving rent is that it then gives a feeling of ownership on the part of the persons who are paying the rent. They think that my place is now open to whatever they want to do with it. So it is trashed I guess pretty much like they would their own place. They, in their minds saw my run down little cottage as pretty much fully worn out in the first place and therefore they saw no need to pick it up whatsoever. It was basic survival for these busy busy residents from here on. No time for those little bits of cleaning and such that makes a filthy home healthy and germ free- particularly when you have animals living inside alongside humans. Too busy with kids and work. So just leave off the grime cleaning and the pet hair removal- just exist and skate over the surface- when you have time. Yes, and I understand the reasons for it, they were overburdened and overwhelmed. And I watched all this and I said nothing. Ain't I a saint? Funny thing is though they somehow thought they had improved my place. Weird how people see things isn't it? I didn't say anything because I thought well they are family and they have been through a really hard time and i should just let them be. Aren't I a wonderful and sensitive brother?
All this until one day. I was up painting out the gallery in an attempt to improve something on my poor neglected property. I happened to enter the laundry for something. This was a difficult feat to achieve because it was stacked to the roof with their mountain of dirty washing. There on the floor is my favourite jumper- a rather expensive jumper- really my only expensive jumper - and there on the middle of my jumper which lay there on the filthy floor was a huge steaming dog's poop. Right there smack in the middle of my beautiful jumper!!! Can you picture it? A huge curly piled up high stinking - dog shit there on my favourite jumper. I ask you; is this not at the very least mildly insulting?
I immediately swallowed much anger several million times and alerted my sibling who looked at me as though I was making a mountain out of a molehill. No apology of course. Shit happens---literally. It will be washed off- no harm done.
So then I starts to really notice the lack of regard for my things. Also in the laundry I notice one of my humble possessions. In an attempt at improving the look of my poor kitchen in my poverty struck state I had purchased some lovely little orange ( my favourite colour) cushions for the kitchen chairs. It had been tossed into a basket and there was some sort of vomit looking substance with dark soya sauce looking blobs all over it. This was something I just noted and thought Hmmmm as one does when not knowing how to respond to something rather disturbing that they have just seen. Hmmm-------
Then I start to look a little more. In the back room near the laundry they had stored an old style couch. Draped over it for protection was a most beautiful doona cover. My beautiful doona cover. My expensive bejewelled doona cover that cost me $250. I bought it as a celebration when I first got with my girlfriend so we would feel special in our bed. you know- a bit of a romantic and exorbitant thing? It was worth more than the thing it was protecting- but hey, it served the purpose when you don't give a shit about another person's belongings. To add insult their cat loved get up on this perfect position so there was fur all over it. Again I swallowed a million angry voices and commented that I thought that was not really the go with my things. And again I was informed that I was making a mountain out of a molehill and that a good wash was all that was needed. The emphasis was more to do with- you shouldn't get so pissed off old fellah- it means nothing to me so why should it mean something to you? Because it is my things getting fucking trashed that's why!!!!!!
So over the next few weeks phone calls are being made ( and discussions behind my back etc) as to how angry I am and how no-one can understand why. It's as if I had no rights whatsoever. All was rosy in the garden you old idiot. Calm down. So okay- I did. Aren't I enlightened? I didn't do any meditating yet I was able to summon calmness. I was calm. Right. And everything went quiet from my side at least but obviously not from the tenants side. It was as busy as ever. It was growing a festering scorn directed fairly and squarely at me. It was coming like a slow train. They were waiting for me to dare to step out of line again and they had both barrels locked and loaded and pointing in my direction. Ready.
Little did I know.
to be continued...............................................................