Sunday, July 11, 2010
With friends like these. . .
What an odd and unsatisfactory experience yesterday at the farmers’ market in Pennington. Most of the booths and tents were all about food, but one was for Animal Allies, a group claiming to foster adoption of homeless animals.
First, their tent was a little removed from all the others – so not in the line of traffic. Second, if they had posters or signs about their mission, I missed them. All I saw was a half dozen or so people, mostly seated, a couple holding dogs, and all talking among themselves.
Did I as a stranger approaching them cause anyone to stop talking, say hi and offer information? Not at all.
Did I, putting my fingers into a cage to pet a black cat, cause any of them to speak? Nope. (By this point, I wondered what they’d do if I lifted the cat cage and walked away with it.)
Finally, the woman seated nearest me asked if I needed anything. Perfect question! I responded that I’d kind of hoped for a hello. No reply.
Only when I started walking away did she ask if I had questions or needed anything. By then I had given up, and pretty much told her so.
How do you tell people they’re doing a terrible job when apparently they don’t want to hear that, or much of anything? Why didn’t these so-called “animal allies” in their so-called “animal advocacy group” stand up, move around and encourage people to come over to meet and hear about the animals? Why didn’t they walk the animals around?
Instead, they seemed to prefer hunkering down and talking among themselves – probably about how (other) people don’t seem to want to help animals these days . . . If the world were going to come to them and their cause, as they seemed to expect, it would have done so long ago and there’d be no need for “animal allies.”
“Lackadaisical” would be the nicest possible word to describe these allies. “Pro-active”? Ha! They never heard the word.