I try not to ask readers of this blog for financial donations for causes, because I know everybody has their own money issues and I don’t think anyone else should tell others how to be charitable.
But every once in a while, for a truly worthy cause, I break that rule, like today.
One morning a week I volunteer a few hours at the Holy Apostles Soup Kitchen, on 28th St. and 9th Avenue here in Manhattan. Open for 31 years, the soup kitchen serves more than 1,000 meals daily, making it the second-biggest such facility in America (apparently there’s a bigger soup kitchen in San Francisco).
It’s a wonderful place, staffed by about 40-50 volunteers per day. Some of us serve the food, others clear the tables, hand out drinks, cut up vegetables in the kitchen, etc. And truthfully, it’s more than a soup kitchen; Holy Apostles also helps the homeless in so many other ways, with free counseling services, free haircuts and toiletries, and often blankets and other clothes, along with free legal services, too.
Every week I’m there, at least one of the clients who comes in says how grateful he or she is for this place, and we know that for many if not all of them, this lunch is the only meal they’ll eat all day.
It’s a community of people who have nowhere else to go to eat, and are so happy that for at least an hour or so, they can come in from the cold and their problems outside and have a nice hot meal.
Funding, as you might expect, is always a problem for the soup kitchen; food donations do come in, but I’ve been told that 80 percent of the food and supplies is purchased by Holy Apostles (in case you were wondering, there is no religious affiliation with the soup kitchen; the church is a totally separate entity, they just allow their space to be used).
So why am I telling you all this? Next Thursday the soup kitchen is holding its annual Fast-a-thon fundraiser, encouraging all the volunteers to eat only one meal a day in solidarity with our daily guests. My wife and I have started a fundraising page for the event, and have raised about $500 so far.
I know the holidays are coming up and budgets are tight, but if you get any enjoyment from this blog each day, I’d ask you to please consider a small donation.
A dollar, $5, $10, whatever you can give would be so much appreciated. Here’s the link to our fundraising page, and I thank you so much in advance for your generosity.
**All right, now for something more upbeat than homelessness and hunger. Here’s a pretty hilarious video of a Sergeant major in the Marines doing his best breakdancing moves at the recent Marine Corps Ball (to the tune of “Billie Jean,” of course.)
I miss breakdancing, though I never could do it at all (my cousin Robby was pretty good at it when he was a kid).
Iisn’t it about time that it came back in style?
**Finally today, the hubbub in the sports world about the Miami Dolphins Richie Incognito/Jonathan Martin bullying case has died down a little, thankfully, but here are two pieces of media I found interesting.
First, a truly tasteless ad from Spirit Airlines, trying to, um, capitalize on the attention the bullying story got.
I mean, that’s pretty bad, right?
And then something a little funnier; a New York Times writer named Jonathan Martin wrote about what it was like to be confused on the Internet with the Dolphins player, although anyone with half a brain would’ve been able to figure out it wasn’t him.
As he said, he had it bad, but not as bad as anyone named Jerry Sandusky did.