Quote of the Day:
“Be excellent to each other.” Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure
Last year TB tentatively went forward with an idea I had nursed for several years. That idea was to raise a bit of money and give it to someone I didn’t know. No strings attached, not even so much as accepting thanks. It had to be mostly anonymous, at least individually and as selfless an act as I could make it. At the risk of diminishing the selflessness, I did want the recipients to know that the unexpected Christmas windfall came from the people who make up the MTGU, not so they would give some twisted form of repayment in the form of gratitude, but so they would hopefully pay it forward in future years, as able. Also so they would know there wasn’t some kind of scam involved somehow. The money would be raised through purchases on the Amazon link here on the page, half the commission received by the site would go to our own expenses and the rest to the Be Excellent Fund. I do not know why the line from Bill and Ted was the best I could come up with for a name. I hoped to raise a hundred bucks.
Instead, thanks to all of you, we raised over $400 bucks and gave it away to four families. I have no idea how it was spent and it doesn’t matter. It felt great to do something nice for someone we would never know as part of our Christmas celebration. I guess that feeling of kindness and the common good has a selfish side too, but on balance, it’s still a good deed, and it seems to me a way to remind not only our unknown beneficiaries, but ourselves that even though the world is crazy, even though times are tough, even though we are constantly subjected to widespread anger and distrust of and from our fellow travelers almost constantly these days, there is still a lot of good to be found out there. People are mostly good. It’s important to be reminded I think. Four hundred bucks won’t change the world, not even a life. But the idea is, maybe it can give a few people who are feeling overwhelmed, stressed, worried, or whatever, a bright spot at Christmas.
I don’t have a goal in mind for this year. I don’t expect anyone to send me a check just like last year I didn’t. But if you want to, I’ll take it like I did last year and put it in the shoebox until we collectively decide where to spend it. You can use the “donate” button on the top left of the page if you want to use Paypal. I’ll put 90% of that in the Fund through the day we disperse it. A pledge for twenty bucks already came in today. A good start.
What I will ask of you is that if you shop through Amazon for Christmas or otherwise, please use the link on this page to start your search. It’s down on the bottom left of the page. I also ask that you spread the word to friends and family to use the portal here. If you can’t figure out how, just email me. Basically, you type in your search term in the box and then just shop as you normally would. Your price is unaffected by using the portal, but the MTGU collects 4-6% as a commission from Amazon.
I’ve also got some MTGU T-shirts left from last year–most sizes. If you want one, they are 20 bucks and I’ll put ten of that in the fund. Free shipping!
Finally, we need nominations. You can email me privately if you feel that is best. Or better yet, post them in the comments below. There are no qualifications the recipient must have. You may want to help someone with medical bills or someone going through a divorce. Maybe you know a teacher who deserves an extra Xmas smile. Perhaps a neighbor, someone trying to adopt, a college student, or a friend out of work. It could be someone who is always serving others and deserves a little cash to splurge on themselves for a change or even just someone who is lonely. Whatever.
We’ll take nominations throughout October and up to Third Week when I’ll open voting for our choices.