Sunday, January 17, 2010

So. fucking. thirsty. #Haiti


Clovis, Daily Observer, January 20, 2010

Clovis, Jamaica Observer, January 17, 2010

How can you be sitting there
telling me... that you care?

--Bob Marley, So Much Trouble in the World

In the first 24 hours after Haiti's 7.0 earthquake on January 12, there were two tweeters who steadfastly transmitted information from ground zero. @RAMhaiti and @Carelpedre. The latter also posted some of the earliest images out of the devastated country on Facebook. @RAMhaiti, the twitter name for Richard Morse, a musician and owner of the handsome Hotel Oloffson was a fount of information, not just of death and entrapment, but also details such as the information that everyone slept outdoors after the earthquake. In fact you could distinguish between those who arrived afterwards and those who lived through the quake, by the fact that the former slept indoors, while the latter slept outdoors, in driveways, parks, squares; anywhere but inside a structure that could collapse and kill them while they slept.

@Dooneystudio memorably captured the effect of Morse's messages: "Like a dark poem unfolding amidst the dread: Richard Morse tweeting during the earthquake in Haiti." Her tweet links to the Guardian story How Haitian writer Richard Morse gave an hourly account of earthquake through Twitter.

Yesterday i found my day interrupted by the following tweet from @Carelpedre, billed as one of Haiti's best and most popular radio & TV hosts:

@carelpedre: It's sad! It's Been 4 days now and we're begging for some water on twitter!

This stark tweet reminded me of the gap between virtual reality and the REAL, constantly reminding us that no matter how empowered we feel by the new technologies there are too many people out there at the mercy of nature, without so much as the crudest tools at their disposal to withstand its ravages.

It reminded me of the darkly brilliant Tweeter who created the StarvingAfrican account. Her/his periodic tweets are sent out as if they come from a starving person, reminding you that they are still hungry.The account only has a handful of followers because who wants to be reminded that people are starving, right? I can't help but link what's happening in Haiti to StarvingAfrican. See below for StarvingAfrican's recent tweets.

starvingafrican

hungry. still.
about 24 hours ago from web

fucking hungry
1:14 PM Jan 7th from web

hungry. really. hungry.
1:09 AM Dec 29th, 2009 from web

merry fucking christmas. still hungry.
4:36 AM Dec 27th, 2009 from web

hungry.
3:22 PM Dec 23rd, 2009 from web

surprise! still hungry.
1:57 PM Dec 23rd, 2009 from web

hungry
5:48 PM Dec 22nd, 2009 from web

could eat a horse.
5:32 PM Dec 22nd, 2009 from web

lunchtime. **crickets**
3:22 PM Dec 21st, 2009 from web

vultures are circling overhead. still hungry.
12:46 PM Dec 21st, 2009 from web

hungry.
1:57 AM Dec 21st, 2009 from web

time for dinner. **crickets**
12:26 AM Dec 20th, 2009 from web

fucking hungry.
12:23 AM Dec 20th, 2009 from web

hungry
6:13 PM Dec 19th, 2009 from web

so. fucking. hungry.
2:50 PM Dec 19th, 2009 from web

belly distending. vultures circling overhead. hungry.
2:36 PM Dec 18th, 2009 from web

starving to death.
2:33 PM Dec 18th, 2009 from web

hungry.
2:09 AM Dec 18th, 2009 from web

feed me.
5:14 PM Dec 8th, 2009 from web

So. fucking. hungry.
10:19 PM Dec 6th, 2009 from web

6 comments:

corvedacosta said...

They will need a tonne of help to restart their lives.

I think it is a good way for Haiti to rebuild and start anew.

Fiyu Pikni said...

Today I saw some footage of throngs of "looters" (as they are usually characterized) running away from a warehouse with nof krokos bag a fuud. Getting goods and services to Haiti has been one thing- seems to have gone well. Distributing these life sustaining goods and services are another matter. I can imagine how difficult it is to coordinate everything. But it's ironic that people would be starving when there are stockpiles of food near the airport awaiting distribution.

Coffeewallah said...

As always, we can only try. Great post!

Annie Paul said...

Hey Coffeewallah! this must be the first time you've left a comment on my blog. Thanks!

FYP yes, it's tragic really, that now there is so much food all of a sudden but it can't reach those who need it.

Corve, i really hope that its possible to do this.

花園 said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
YardEdge said...

As the days go by and people's attention moves onto the next big thing, perhaps Brangelina splitting up or not, we need to be reminded that Haiti still needs and will for a long time need lots and lots of help of all types. Why don't you start a twitter persona, "Thirsty Haitian" a la Starving African which I didn't know about. Thx for sharing.