Monday, June 21, 2010

Saving them is saving us

The people of the Gulf Coast are our neighbors. They are suffering ... again. This horrible oil spill is making it difficult for them to work, which means it's hard for them to keep up with their bills and their rent payments.

They need our help.

This country proved very generous when Haiti was decimated. I'd like to see us display similar compassion and generosity toward our own. I'm doing my small part by including this link. The Second Harvest Food Bank of Greater New Orleans and Acadiana is affiliated with Feeding America and Catholic Charities. I encourage everyone to investigate this and consider making a contribution.

Yes, BP has put aside $20 billion to handle the clean up and to respond to claims by those in the Gulf who have lost their livelihood. But even if the fund distributes the funds efficiently, it will still take weeks for checks to be cut.

These people don't have weeks to wait for that money. They have medical bills … utility bills … housing costs … childcare and petcare expenses … and, perhaps the ultimate insult, they have to pony up about $2.60/gallon for gas.

The Second Harvest Food Bank is helping these citizens with emergency food services. And I'm helping them with a cash contribution. Because getting a free bag of food from The Second Harvest will help their cash on hand go a little further and last a little longer.

I tried to stay. I really did.

I am going to tell this story without embellishment, because none is necessary. The real-life details are horrifying enough.

Today our agency's new chief creative officer started. This is a very big deal. There was a reception for him and we were all supposed to go up and shake his hand.

I went up to the meeting room where the reception was being held. I saw our agency president holding court, allowing two of our top production chiefs to sniff his ass with so much enthusiasm I thought I had wandered into a dog park. Unseemly, yes, but bearable. "Suck it up, Gal," I told myself. "You can expect office politics everywhere there's an office."

I moved over to the buffet, where I heard one of my coworkers ask, loudly, of the ranch dressing he was spooning onto his plate, "Is this lox?" Well, it's not often you encounter white, runny lox. Perhaps the BP oil spill has already done something heinous to all of our salmon.

Then a guy swaggered in who appeared proud of having too many piercings, too many tattoos and a severe, too-black-to-be-natural mullet-mohawk. (This is Brian Bosworth; I am quite sure even he has figured out this look is stupid and abandoned it.)

I couldn't stay another moment. I simply couldn't. I left before the CCO even arrived.

I grabbed a beer and hurried back to my desk to blog about it before I forgot a single detail. And was envious of people who work from home.