Twitchhiker | Paul Smith's travel tales from here and there


And so the hate mail begins…
03/07/2009, 08:27
Filed under: antarctica | Tags: , ,

To vote for me, visit the Quark Expedition website and click Vote for Me below my picture – it takes 30 seconds to register and you can opt-out immediately.

Not even 12 hours after my first post on Antarctica, and the hate mail starts. Not just one email, but two:

“I CAN’T BELIEVE YOU ARE WANTING TO DESTROY THE DREAMS OF OTHERS SO BADLY. READ WHAT THEY HAVE TO SAY! THIS IS A DREAM COME TRUE FOR THEM… YOU ARE A SELFISH IDIOT AND I HOPE YOU FAIL!”

Woah. They’re using caps lock so you know they mean it.

But do they have a point? I read a dozen or so entries, noted their dreams, their hopes and fears, and I still decided to enter – does that make me selfish? Am I looking to destroy the dreams of others?

It’s an argument you can lay at the feet of anybody else taking part. Who is the most worthy winner of this trip? And if that person wins, don’t they destroy the dreams of others by doing so? Aren’t Quark Expeditions the ultimate destroyer of dreams by not paying for everyone to go?

Then you realise; it’s a competition. It’s a battle, a race, a challenge. I’m not out to hurt the feelings of others, I’m here to take on another adventure, and this is a chance to do just that. And so to email number two:

“After the fiddle that was Twitchhiker, you’re out to con the world once more! You don’t care about any charity except yourself.”

Gah. Twitchhiker didn’t begin life as a mission to raise money for charity, I was completely upfront about that from day one. The point was there wasn’t a single reason not to, and in the end we raised over £5,000 for Charity: water. We didn’t need to, the point is we could. This is no different. How do we raise money for charity? The trip is for two people, not one – see my comment on the previous post as one idea. If you’ve a better idea, let’s hear it.

Listen, I’d like to win this trip because I’m reasonably good at blogging, and I love to travel – more so since Twitchhiker. To combine both by undertaking an expedition to the Antarctic – that sounds like an extraordinary opportunity. But if getting behind one person means we create a second twitchhiker to join me and we raise money for charity, that’s ideal!

If you agree with the sentiment of either comment, then I’d suggest you read through the other entries. Make your own mind up. My personal opinion is that so far, the people leading this competition don’t necessarily make the most worthy case in their written entry. What they’re doing is fighting tooth and nail to win this through self-promotion. I don’t see why we can’t do the same.

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