Buying into belief…

So this “Ice Bucket Challenge” thing is all the rage right now. I have a hard time believing with how everywhere it is that I didn’t know what it was just a couple days ago. It has gone from a silly game on YouTube and Facebook to actual awareness of the cause itself, at least in my case. That’s been three clockwork days for me: ignorance to action. If it has affected me as such, in so short a time, maybe it’s actually raising the awareness – and the dollars – it should. I hope it is.

The reason I am raising awareness is not without its selfish purposes. I was tapped last night to face the Challenge myself: be doused in frigid water and donate a small $10 sum, or skip the shocking cold and donate $100.

My money is important to me. It keeps a roof over my head. It buys me supplies for the various projects I undertake. It allows me to stay fed and entertained. I consider what I’ll be getting from every dollar I spend. Sometimes it is instant gratification – that wily old flash-in-the-pan – and sometimes it is an actual investment that seems frivolous but will, eventually, pan out.

But it’s my money and I like to spend it on things that I enjoy and I believe in. So why should I donate my hard-earned dollars to ALS research?

Because in that small donation is a familiar symbol that I have invested in a number of times. It shows that I believe that this can happen. Whether it’s ALS or cancer or HIV or any of a number of terrible things we can rally against, I believe that we can beat this. I believe we can beat them all, eventually, and if I have to have a bucket of freezing water dumped on me to spread that belief a little further, so be it.

Now the second part of this challenge is that I am supposed to pass it on. But the truth is, I have no desire to force anyone into any part of this – whether it’s parting with their money or suffering momentary hypothermia. I accept the challenge because, well, it’s a challenge. It’s worth a story. If you’d like to, you can use me as an excuse. Say I tapped you for the challenge. It’s okay, it’ll be our secret. Heck, tag me in it, I’ll gladly play along.

What I will ask you to do is donate. Buy into hope.

www.alsa.org/donate

And now, what you’ve been waiting for… enjoy.

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