Sunday, October 28, 2007

Why some people should not write

Some people should never ever be allowed to write, for any sort of media.

Alan Ah Mu comes to mind.

As to why Sano Malifa allows this dude to write Editorials is baffling.

I'd happily get my 13 year old cousin to write an editorial, or better yet, correct Ah Mu's articles.

Today I browsed through Samoa Observer (as is my religious routine on a nightly basis) in the hope of reading some good ol' Sano bashing of some 'somebody-high-n-mighty' but was sadly dissapointed because he must be at the golf course, leaving the workers to write chaos.

Let me dissect Ah Mu's article today:

"Fly the Apia-Auckland route often enough, like once a year, and the realisation might dawn that the two places are just five hours apart by air." No shet, Sherlock

The distancing aspect these days is no longer geography it is perspective. In particular the wrong perspective".

Why doesn't he put commas where they are meant to be?

He goes on to state:

"Meaning their impression of what life in Samoa was like going on what their parents had told them was more than a little off target."
...I feel like a Mrs Barlow right now and okegia you for not formulating your sentences correctly!

"It is what we should be watching ourselves on our television here rather than a programme about an American man riding around fighting bad guys with his motor vehicle which he talks to - and, God Almighty, Dallas."

Oi sole, where do I start?

Grammatical dramas aside, the context of his story is a rather poorly researched, a shallow viewpoint about NZ Samoans impressions of Samoa and the impacts on Samoans in Samoa. hehe...(thats a whole lotta Samoans in one sentence!)

I understand where he is coming from, but he got lost along the way.

Firstly, he makes such degrading and bitter generalisations about people. Without getting his facts right. Without acknowledging the harsh realities that Samoans abroad endure in order to get that church in your village rebuilt and retiled.

My point is, Ah Mu, Samoans of the 60-70s left for a 'supposed' better life, for their families, their children. Not necessarily by choice. That, my horrible editor, is a fact.
They left their homelands with the intents of building a future, making money, educating their children, remitting their meagre wages for their families in Samoa.
How did they do this?

Working long hours in factories, meatworks, construction while the average New Zealander basked in the sunshine, giddy with choices.

Clearly, their Samoa became a "laid back" dream, of warmth, freedom and sadly,..the past.

We humans do that, we reminisce about the past, until it becomes rose-tinted and candy flossed.

They tell their children of this "paradise", their children's Samoa becomes their parent's Samoa. That, my friend, is why Samoans abroad speak of Samoa in a nostalgic, romanticed way.
I will do the same for my 7 imaginary children in the future. I will lie on a mat in our floral living room and sing "Tuli mai tuli mai" and tell stories about "MY" Samoa. I will tell them of the beauties of my homeland. As for the realities, let them find out for themselves. That is for them to choose.

Not for an editor to point out.


Jarrett said...

Thanks for your comments. Just to let you know I don't play golf. We have two other editorial writers. Alan and Keni. We also have a proof reader. We have to give these guys a chance. Otherwise, no one learns.

Jarrett said...

Sano asked me to post his comment because he doesn't have an account here. I'm his son and i thought i'll just correct it in case some get confused as to who wrote the comment.


Fotu said...

I can't find the editorial you're talking about but I must admit to being one quick to criticise the Samoan born and raised in Otara with a rosy tinted (almost Garden of Eden) view of home as having "no idea what they're on about" without considering the struggles and selective tales their parents might have told them. Interesting insights Jody.

Nice to see you writing again.

gusdafa said...


Before they put their mugs next to their "articles" I actually thought Allan Ah Mu was this kid who started year 9 while Mr Breen was teachen my englandish.