It still hurts to see the pictures.
I still look. I’m still horrified. I’m still angry.
I will never forget.
It still hurts to see the pictures.
I still look. I’m still horrified. I’m still angry.
I will never forget.
You know, I was just going to quietly* donate so I could stack the deck in my favor of winning the York Arms lower that he’s raffling off. You know, because I can’t just have one half built rifle in the living room. Two is one and one is none, right?
And then he went and upped the anty
And if you were the lucky winner of the York Arms stripped lower, you could build one just like you want, too. Tell you what. I’ll even up the ante: If I make it into the top three by the end, I’ll toss in a Brownells High Standard lower parts kit to the prize package so that you can (partially) complete your lower. A custom, one-of-a-kind AR-15 lower *AND* a parts kit with which to finish it. And all you have to do is be the lucky winner – but you have to donate to win, and the more you donate, the better your chances…
Curse you and your competitive ways! My plans! Foiled! *shakes tiny fist at the sky*
So, if you want to reduce my chances of winning the lower while increasing the likely hood of it actually reaching its potential, then head on over and donate. Remember, your donation is tax-deductible. Make sure to select Team JayG if you want in on the raffle.
Really, whatever team you pick, you’re striking a blow at the beast that targets the men we love.
*Yes, that’s a lie. You all know I don’t do anything quietly.
You may have noticed the thermometer over there in my sidebar. Yes, I’m doing a marathon. No, I am not running. I’m just not into activities that have cute little euphemisms for losing bowel control. But I can do this one, and you can sponsor me. Just click on the pic up there or the link in my sidebar. No ice needed.
I am honored to work for a company that gives so much back to the communities where we do business. They have supported the Children’s Miracle Network for many years now, but this is the first year they have challenged those of us in the corporate office to get involved. I couldn’t say no. I have seen the lives that these hospitals have touched. Treating kids is expensive and children’s hospitals never turn a child away regardless of a family’s ability to pay.
I know, you are all picking your teams for Kilted to Kick Cancer right now and I encourage you to do so, but I would be honored if you would consider sponsoring me in this endeavor. Or at least cheer me on for my mile a day. If you’d like, give me some suggestions for how my mile should be completed each day. The rules say run, walk, or achieve forward motion.
For better or worse, the viral ice bucket challenge has everyone talking. Sure, people are annoyed. It was a publicity stunt using a silly challenge and peer pressure to attempt to do some good. And regardless of how you feel about such things, it drove a lot of money to an organization that wasn’t getting much attention previously. Overall, I call it a win.
Will some of that money be mismanaged and wasted in administrative costs? Possibly. Non-profit corporations do have legitimate administrative costs, but they are most certainly not immune to greed and corruption. And yes, many of the charity behemoths are overseen by overpaid administrators. I don’t expect the CEO of a non-profit to live in abject poverty just because managing a charity is their full time job, but I also don’t believe they should be getting rich off the kindness of strangers either. It’s reasonable to expect that the majority of the dollars I give to a given charity actually go towards the stated goal of said charity. (The ALS Association is rated B+ by charity watch. It has also been evaluated by the BBB and Charity Navigator.)
I had never given to The ALS Association prior to the ice bucket event. I may or may not give to them again, but some of their new donors will likely be repeat donors. This is a good thing, and I hope they continue to manage their proceeds well. For them, this stunt is a wild success that should rightfully be celebrated.
But what does it mean for other charities? There are a few that are very near and dear to my heart that will be hurt by this stunt. Many people, including yours truly, only have so much that can be budgeted to charitable giving. Every dollar I give to charity ABC is a dollar I can’t give to charity XYZ. I wish I had more dollars to go around, but my mortgage company insists that they get a good chunk of the dollars I’ve got.
And then we run into charity fatigue. Sure, they are all good causes but I just get so tired of everyone asking for my hard-earned money. Heck, I’m about to ramp up to ask you for even more with this weekend’s game-a-thon to benefit Hotdogs for the Homeless. Then we will jump straight into Kilted to Kick Cancer (now a bonafide 501c3) for the month of September. Not to mention I’m doing a marathon for the Children’s Miracle Network (sponsor me?). All before the whole world turns pink and talks about boobs.
I get it. I’m tired too and dammit I want to spend some of my cash on ME. Because sometimes I’m selfish, and I have every right to be.
But I’m also a believer in these charities and what they are doing. Yeah, I want to feel like I can be a part of something great, something that makes the world a little brighter. There’s enough strife and misery to go around. The outlook may be bleak and depressing, but I simply must believe there is hope. The alternative is unbearable.
Yes, I and others like me will continue to do silly, crazy stunts for charity. I hope you get a laugh out of it. I hope it makes you smile. I’d love for you to contribute, but only because you want to be a part of it too and not because I’ve guilted you into it. Or give to win a prize. Or give to see me do something ridiculous (I lack shame and love attention, if I can channel that into something good, everyone wins). Or don’t. We can still be friends.
In the next few weeks, I’ll obviously be highlighting the charities linked above, but I’d like to hear from you. What charities or causes are near and dear to your heart and why? Or maybe it’s not a charity. I will always be proud of the way we’ve banded together to help out one of our own even without the fancy tax documents. Go ahead and give yourselves another pat on the back for that, by the way. But I’d love to hear about your passions. Do you make blankets for newborns? Pick up trash? Feed the hungry? Scoop poop at the animal shelter? Go ahead, toot your own horn in the comments.
Don’t set yourself on fire.
Because apparently some people need to be told that.
Or maybe I should say, if you’re stupid enough to set yourself on fire, stay away from other flammable things and thank you for culling the gene pool.
No, I’m not talking about Ferguson. I’m talking about Liberia
Liberian officials fear Ebola could soon spread through the capital’s largest slum after residents raided a quarantine center for suspected patients and took items including bloody sheets and mattresses.
Um, guys? I get that you’re angry that potentially infected people were brought into your community, but I’m thinking you didn’t really consider the ramifications of you actions. I mean, your stated goal of “No Ebola in West Point” was a rational one. Looting infectious materials and spreading them around the community seems rather contrary.
But then again, I never really understood how looting and rioting ever solved anything or got anyone closer to their goals. Regardless of whether or not the cause is just. I suppose if your goal was “Ebola for Everyone!” this would be an excellent way to achieve it. Personally, I think I’m staying the hell away from Liberia for the foreseeable future. Not that I was planning a trip anyway, but you never know. I could wake up tomorrow and decide that bleeding out my eyes would be an excellent experience to have.
*checks bucket list*
Nope, it’s not on there anywhere. In fact, it’s listed over there in the ‘Nope’ column. Right after ‘drowning’ and before ‘fire, death by’.
Is it just me, or is someone running through the streets trailing bedding infected with Ebola darn near close to a zombie problem?
I’m no stranger to depression, and I’m glad everyone is talking about it. As I said elsewhere
I, for one, am glad we’re talking about this. Depression lies and not even fame and fortune can drown it out. Of course, his decision wasn’t right, but he apparently felt like it is all he had. And the very fact that so many were touched by his life and feeling the loss proves that he was wrong. Proves that he did mean something to so many people. Maybe someone else that is feeling so alone can hear that message and make a better choice. Calling it selfish is cruel over-simplification. Instead, lets point out the ripples of heartache and pain. Focus on the brilliance and the gifts bestowed on all of us. The tragedy of it all is that he forgot. Depression’s lies drowned out everything else for him.
There are many of us out there that fight with depression on a regular basis. The extroverts among us usually hide it pretty well. To see someone that seemed to be winning that battle lose it after so many years is rough. I haven’t seen anyone celebrating or glorifying his death, instead pointing out the tragedy of a life ended too soon.
The pain of depression is very, very real. The desire to end it all to make it go away is strong. Don’t. Even if you escape your demons in the end, you leave them for someone else. Someone you love will find you and they will have to deal with not only your remains but the very demons you hoped to silence. And some new ones as well.
When it feels like it is too much, get help. It probably is too heavy for you to lift alone. One man couldn’t lift a train, but it was nothing when the burden was shared. Your load is no different, and you will be amazed at how many will volunteer to lift it.
Depression lies. Depression tells you that you are alone and that you don’t matter. It tells you that no one cares. Depression kills but only if you let it. Only if you listen. Depression speaks with the devil’s tongue.
You, the real you-the one behind the mask, matter. Peek around that wall. You are not alone. Your spark is precious.
Yesterday, depression lied to 22 veterans and 1 Robin Williams. The monkey stopped dancing, and I’m not laughing. Tomorrow it will lie to more people. We need to keep talking about it. Maybe if we do, we’ll start to drown out the lies.
Jenny, the Blogess, linked a piece she wrote earlier this year that deserves re-reading. I’ll just leave you with her words.
Tell someone that you love them, or that they’re important. And tell yourself. Because it’s true.
Even to legendary funny men, and the world is a darker place.
I pray that you find the peace that eluded you in life and that your demons are finally silenced.
Depression lies, don’t listen.