Monday, 18 November 2013

The pointlessness of blogging or tweeting when you're angry

There are a number of things you shouldn't do when you're angry.

Writing a resignation letter is one of them. I once knew someone who did that in a fit of pique. They wrote it, seemingly with their own bile, posted it, immediately regretted it and had to camp out on their employer's doorstep in the hope they might be able to prise the letter from the postman's hands over the next few days.

It didn't work and they were out of a job.

Blogging or tweeting in anger is not to be recommended either. That's why I've waited several days to post this.

At the weekend, Mr Grigg and I drove up to Bristol for the south west heat of the Great British Care Awards. We had nominated my autistic stepson's carer, a 24-year-old with the calmest, most respectful attitude you could ever come across, as a carer of the year. He and we were chuffed when he was shortlisted. This young man is a diamond, he really is.

He didn't win but he shared in his colleague's joy when the latter picked up an award in another category.

There were around four hundred people at this event and if you multiply this by the number of regional heats, even if, like me, you're not very good at maths, you'll see the awards involve thousands of carers up and down the country.

It's an opportunity for people like us to say thank you, an opportunity for excellence to be celebrated. And it's an opportunity for carers to let their hair down and have a good night out. There were people there from charities like Scope, the Leonard Cheshire Foundation, council departments and old people's homes. The thing they all had in common was what they did for a living.

Caring is not a job for the faint-hearted and you need to have a special aptitude for it. It doesn't pay well but there are some people, like my stepson's carer and one of my sisters, who are very good at it. Good carers make a real difference to the lives of vulnerable people. They are all winners.

And that especially includes ordinary, untrained people who care for family and friends without getting a bean. But that's another story. Don't get me on that one.

There are awards evenings for all sorts of professions, industries, trades and vocations - film and television, housing, nursing, journalism, house building and accountancy. 

This one was slick, professional and well-supported. And as the staff at my stepson's home enjoyed a night off, I, along with others, tweeted about the event.

I posted a picture of those who had been shortlisted, with the caption: They're all winners.
Among the Twitter replies was this, from a community video organisation:

be a million times better if they got paid a decent wage. No carer does the job for awards, so really is a pointless pr stunt.

Why thank you very much. What a completely fatuous, glib comment. Pointless really. Of course carers deserve more money and of course they don't do it for awards - does anyone in any job? But why, just because carers in general are undervalued by society, shouldn't they have an awards ceremony? Why dismiss it as a 'pointless PR stunt'?

I was so cross until I saw on the organisation's website that at least one of the film makers involved had won international awards. That's probably why he got into film making. For the awards, I mean. 

As if. 

That would be just pointless.

That's about it.

Love Maddie x


  1. Nicely "curbed" yet your point was made. Imagine living in that small-spirited way. Carers are Angels!

    1. There are some very good carers out there. Lots of them in fact. I think it was the words 'pointless' and 'stunt' that tipped me over the edge.

  2. I can feel your anger throbbing though the screen. I understand the way something like that can trigger major irritation. I also wonder whether the tweet arises from bitterness and disappointment that carers are under-valued and under-payed. A sort of despair. Confess I've never been a fan of award ceremonies - but you have made me see some special upsides to them. Keep your hat on!

  3. Thanks Esther. I also thought the same. And I've also never been a fan of awards ceremonies - too many people who don't win and it's all subjective. PR yes, but 'pointless' and 'stunt', though, never.

  4. I can understand your anger and frustration. Some people just type without thinking. They are indeed all winners.


Batten down those hatches, it's recycling day

It's blowing a hooley out there.  The wind is lashing against the windows and the dogs are play fighting in front of the Aga before...