SO there’s this lady. She’s quite well known. And for some reason, no matter how many times I try to give her a chance, and no matter how much I WANT to get along with her, something just goes wrong. It’s not like I intentionally tripped on her dress the last time and had it rrrrrip along the waist, exposing her knickers (they had holes! I know! Blind!).
And it’s not like I deliberately dropped that candle on her head yesterday, setting her hair on fire! Damn! Lucky it was a wig. And you should have seen her run! IN retrospect, it was funny. But just a little (lest she think I enjoyed watching her burn)
So I’m sure you’re dying to know who she is? Wondering why you weren’t there to see the dress rip? Weren’t there to see the hair go up in flames. Wigs are highly flammable. Don’t let anyone tell you different.
Well, her name’s Islamic Media. And to protect my ass, I won’t mention just which of the ugly sisters she really is.
Let me take you right back. TO when my (disastrous) run-ins with her first began,
Three years ao I got a call from one of her sisters. She wanted me to write a radio drama. It was short notice (she’s also famous for a lack of planning). But it was an exciting venture. New.
So I roped in a few good writers and we went at the computers like demons. The script was funny. Thought provoking. I actually used the word “good” for it! *gasp* I know! That’s just not me!
They recorded. Played out.
And then the complaints (maybe 5, or was it 10?) came in. We weren’t preaching enough. We were glorifying sex, drugs and rock and roll. (there was sex in there? Really? How did I miss that?!)
We got taken off air. (Did I mention that no one bothered to let me know? Don’t look shocked! #truestory)
While the drama was being written, I also had an undertaking from this sister that they’d help me republish my kid’s book. And this one was ‘religious’ so they were sure there’d be no concerned aunties writing in to complain, using poor grammar and bad spelling.
Months passed after the Drama Hangama. And every enquiry about progress on the illustrations was met with stony silence. Clearly, I was persona non grata.
I gave up. Moved on. And well, I knew that I wouldn’t be working with this sister again.
Fast forward to September, 2011.
Some friends and I decide we’d like to help the disabled and raise funds for the Park that was to be built in Lenz. I decide to overlook the fact that this sister has a hand in this pie.
We start planning. A kid’s fun day. It worked for Al Quds.
We decide to promote it using a local sister who’s had a good run within the community. Did I mention that I gave this sister the use of the rejected drama script? And that it was warmly received? Ajeeb!
And that I’d finally thought that at last I wouldn’t end up on the wrong side of at least one of the ugly sisters?
How it came about that my friends agreed to do a pledge line with the sister, I’ll never know. Why my friends agreed to it still baffles me.
As part of the fundraising I suggested an auction. We raised a small fortune for Al Quds with our auction the last time. All this would take place on the 30th September at a fundraiser that the sister was having for herself (do businesses do fundraisers?).We had too little time, so I suggested flower arrangements.
And then the bombshell!
I get a msg: Leave the flowers
I ask: Why?
Answer: Long story!
Now I don’t know about you, but ‘long story’ is just not an answer. I pushed (and swore a lot!) and got to hear the Long Story.
The long and the short of the long story turned out to be that the sister wanted 50% of all that we raise through the auction for herself.
Now correct me if I’m wrong here, but would that not amount to deceiving the public? Or would they want us to make an announcement : People, bidding is open. We’re raising funds for the disabled and the local sister.
I can just see people forking out thousands for that! NOT!
I ranted and raved. Kept the sister’s name off twitter. But I vented and rid myself of my anger.
Last night at 22:15 we got a message that we weren’t allowed our table.
Did I mention that I’d spent the afternoon yesterday buying rings, brooches, bracelets and other little trinkets that we’d planned on selling at their ‘pledge’ do tonight? That I’d done this against my better judgement because I’d felt this was a bad idea from the beginning? That I’d paid for this out of my pocket?
Was the refusal to allow our Fundraising-for-a-Good-Course-Table when others would be selling stuff there for profit, tied in to my angry tweets?
I’ll never know.
I’m sure I’m going to be blasted for this post. People are going to accuse me of exposing the faults of fellow Muslims.
But I think that BECAUSE we are Muslims and agree to adopt Submission as a way of life, our character should reflect this. It should come across within our organisations. We should hold ourselves to the highest moral standards possible. Our conduct should be exemplary. After all, being in the public eye makes us embassadors for Islam. Is that not what we’re always told?
Yet, all Muslim organisations are plagued by inefficiency and the most dire lack of professionalism I have ever seen. To say that frustrates me would be a lie. It disgusts me.
And now I’ll get off my soapbox.
You may hurl your rotten tomatoes now.