So if you have worked in any crowded part of Manhattan in the last five years (I seem to only work in crowded parts of Manhattan), you are probably familiar with Children's International. This is the organization that sends bright-eyed twentysomethings out in the street to sequester and shake down office drones on their way to Starbucks, ostensibly for the benefit of starving children.
Being generally misanthropic and unsympathetic to children (or at least not more sympathetic to children than other people), I've always been annoyed by these people. I usually don't have much time or interest in giving cash (or as they would prefer my credit card number) to a strange young person with a clipboard and a jacket.
Now the Voice has done a little reporting on the subject and it turns out these branded street beggars are neither entirely altruistic nor particularly shady. Yeah, they get paid by the hour and get fairly substantial bonuses if they get a lot of contributions, but what a pain in the ass it must be to harass people all day for a living, so they're definitely not in it just for the money. (I've always wondered this about summer punks as well: isn't it more work to bother and piss people off all day than to, you know, just get a shit job somewhere?)
All in all, the fresh faces of Children's International generally irritate me. I wish there were a little pin you could wear saying, in effect, "don't bother, I'm going to hell anyway".
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