Thursday, January 20, 2005

Peter Williams - an honorable man

My friend Peter Williams, (his email address is nuphunk@mac.com) late of London, has done what Neil Young suggested years ago. I can hear the refrain in the middle of my head, "Think I'll pack it in and buy a pickup. Head on out to L.A." Only Peter's destination is much farther away. We chatted last week and he said he was headed for Indonesia to help a Non-Governmental Organization in their efforts with the tsunami relief.

He said, "Wayne, I don't have a girlfriend anymore, my business is failing so I am going to Bali to do what I can to help." He said he was trying to get the head of Apple UK to donate a Powerbook to the cause - Peter will be helping with this organization's website and tracking survivors and the missing. I don't think Apple ever helped him out, though, even after I suggested he fax the guy a copy of his passport, visa and airline tickets. Whatever else Apple's UK head was thinking, he would at least know that this man wasn't just trying to cop free Powerbook. Peter is an honest and honorable man, doing what I wish I could do - pack it in and buy a pickup.

I chatted with him last night - he was in Hong Kong, with a one hour layover until his flight to Bali departed. He had is own Powerbook with him for the internet work, but it is an older, slower model and is kind of like taking a knife to a firefight, but he will do what he can with the resources he has available.

Stomps With Foot and I met him last April, in London, and we discussed sending him some money once he gets settled in Bali. We are going to do this as soon as we get his postal address, which I will post on this blog if you would like to help him as well. When SWF and I first broached the subject with him, about sending money, he said, "I will let you know how the money is spent for the refugees and the relief effort."

Selfless, giving individual that he is, Peter did not GET IT. "No, no, no, Peter," I said, "The money is for YOU. For YOU to live on, you will have living expenses and I know you just spent your last pound to buy the one-way ticket to Bali, so we want to do this for YOU, because you are doing what we wish we could do."

SWF and I already sent our donation to UNICEF, you see. The additional money we send to Peter won't qualify for a tax deduction, and that is not why we are doing it. We don't want the deduction, we want Peter Williams to be able to do what he can to help.

Now if I can just collect enough money to get him a Powerbook, or get Apple's ear, then I will be a happy man. If not, I will just keep sending all the money I can to this wonderful man.