Thursday, April 1, 2010


Okay, taxes are filed and spring cleaning never ends, so I'm here to tell you something about my past. What's new, huh?

When I was a young woman with a hungry little son to feed, I found myself in a tight spot: no money, and very little food in the house. Crying doesn't do any good in those situations, but I found myself doing just that on Thanksgiving morning. 

I heard a knock on the door. I didn't hurry, having no reason to feel enthusiastic about a visitor.

I opened the door a crack, and no one was there. A cardboard box sat on my front step: a frozen chicken, a can of yams, a box of stuffing, a bag of homemade noodles, and a few potatoes. That food lasted my son and me for a whole week, and I never found out who left it.

That's why I'm a part of ItStartsWith.Us. Click here or on the Change the World button at the top right of this blog and read. I'll give you a brief summary.

If you want to change the world, use 15 minutes of your time each week, combine it with the 15 minutes of thousands of others around the world, and give someone in need of support a lift. Every week the mission is different, but it's still just 15 minutes of your time.

I can tell you that your kindness grows exponentially. I'm not a fan of math, so I don't use the word exponentially lightly. Just think about it.

Someone left a box of food on my doorstep in 1978. I left an electric heater on the doorstep of an ancient neighbor who was using his oven as a heater in 2008. I did a lot of little things for people in between. That box of food started a quiet little landslide. And I'm sure that the person who left the box of food helped others, who in turn went out and passed that along. And I hope that the people I helped when they were in a better position helped others. See how it works? How many tiny miracles is that? And I've gained much more than I've given.

Here's a little tangent I'd like to explore. Recently I heard a radio personality saying that he expects a thank-you wave when he is polite in traffic. He secretly wishes he'd never done the good deed when the person receiving it is not sufficiently thankful.

That's not how it works for me. In fact, I usually prefer to remain anonymous. That I do for myself. To remind myself that giving is not the other end of receiving. Giving is a reason in itself. I get credit where it counts: the heart.

I really hope I haven't been too preachy. If you feel you'd like to change the world, please click the links and read about a young man named Nate and his ideas, which just blow me away with their simplicity. If you don't care to participate, I'm fine with that.

P.S. Next time I'm going to post one of my "not for everyone" book reviews. True Porn Clerk Stories, a anthropological study by Ali Davis, on whom I have a bit of a girl crush because she is so damn cool. And smart. And she has caused me to make a teeny pee in my pants more than once on Twitter. Follow her if you twitter and are a broad-minded liberal thinker. Otherwise I suspect you won't enjoy her that much. She is also the genius behind Tweetin4Palin.

Will you please follow my blog? I like to see all your tiny faces there. I miss the people who followed me on SugarCain. Shall I put up a sign over there?! *smacks forehead* I begged my former followers to come over here. I told them that when I look at that little block of avatars I imagine that you are sitting in dusty red velvet fold-down seats talking quietly among yourselves and waiting for my show to start.

I've reviewed for you another "not for everyone" book: Bete de Jour: The Intimate Adventures of an Ugly Man by Stan Cattermole, and I told you what Frank McCourt means to me. I should write more about books, considering that is what I was originally trained to do.