By: Hala Alsafadi
Metabolic Functions of Vitamin “F” in Gaza:
1- Never allows you to stand desperately in an endless line waiting for your turn to cash your pay cheque or to get your medical examination or to buy bread ..or.. or.. or ..
3- The easiest way to get promotion in your job.
4- A shortcut to get some good grades in your school or university.
And the list can certainly keep going on!
Well, I guess Vitamin “F” sounds like a pretty cool invention that would make anyone feel how easy life can be. If you are still wondering what the hell is Vitamin “F”, here is the answer:
“F” stands for “Favoritism”; The Vitamin of Favoritism! This kind of vitamin runs in the system of almost every Palestinian. It is too wide-spread that many people are proud of it, how pathetic!
What made this topic pop up is a girl that I had a very “ weird” chit chat with today at work. During the “rush hour” at work and while people are all over the place asking, registering, and getting out of the Placement Tests with blood running up to their faces, a random girl came up to me shouting at the top of her lungs “ Hiiiiii!” I answered back with that awkward voice, which draws a question mark on one’s face, asking her if I can help her. The girl was so surprised that I couldn’t recognize her,which made me feel like I am actually losing my short-term memory in an early age! Anyways, here is a part of what happened:
-“ Don’t you remember me?”
– “ I am sorry. I am afraid I don’t.”
– “ But .. I know you. You are Hala. You study at IUG.”
– “ Yep”
– “ You have not graduated yet. How come you work at AMIDEAST?”
– “Ummmmmm” ( awkwardness in the air)
– “ FAVORITISM,” she said “ It got to be favoritism!”
– “huuuuh!” 20 seconds later, “ Would you please allow me to finish up the guy’s receipt and then I can answer your question?”
The reception was full of unmatched voices; It was crowded and the voices of the Abraham Lincoln Scholarship’s applicants were just raising up every second among the examinees voices causing me a severe headache. I swear to God, once I heard her saying the word “ Favoritism”, I felt like I was drowning in the ugliness of silence. It felt like everything was put on mute for few seconds.
After I finished the guy’s receipt, I “un-muted” the show. She came back to me. I put on a fake smile indicating “yes, I am good to go now”. Again to the same topic of how I got my job here. Simply, I told her that I started as a YES Alumna (Youth Exchange and Study program) and now I work as the YES Scholarship coordinator at AMIDEAST. There is no Favoritism in the whole case at all! It felt like she didn’t take my word for granted. I didn’t actually care, for I know I am being so honest.
She switched the topic and asked me if I can find her a job at AMIDEAST since she is an English literature graduate with an average of 73%. I was so straight forward with her and told her to get me her CV so that I can hand it to those who are responsible, making sure she understands that all she needs to get a job at AMIDEAST is a great English and an empty spot (if she is lucky enough). She still insisted on beating around the bush though. She asked me if any “ favoritism” would help. This time I ignored her question since I believed I had made myself clear. She left.
Yes, I know that many things in Gaza can easily be achieved with a little Vitamin “F”. However, I believe that only losers look very hard for vitamin “F”. I mean, if one believes that he has got what it takes, why will he even wait for anybody’s help? It is really sad how most of the things in Gaza are being connected to favoritism even though some people know deep inside that they are mistaken. If a student gets good grades in school, many others would say that the only reason he is getting good grades is because the teacher is his friend. If a guy has a good job, they would say the only reason he is in that position is his dad’s money. People are really great in making assumptions, I guess!
Albeit we are suffering from this social phenomenon, we should not turn our assumptions into facts without giving it a second thought. You can never know the real plot by means of analyzing the scene the way you may wish.
Favoritism is like taking something that doesn’t belong to you and then believing that it is all yours. It is a disease that is infecting the whole society resulting in putting those who are not qualified in a position that doesn’t go well with them, therefore, making room for injustice and corruption. So make sure to give it a second thought before pointing your finger at someone accusing him of using Vitamin “ F”.
I must be thankful for working at this age since I get to deal with people of all kinds and from different backgrounds, which surely helps me learn more about the world I live in.