We all know what the Holidays in North America typically are significant of: the prior sacrifices and services of the forbearers of the Nation and Christianity. Of course aside from those, at the core, it should be about the inception of gratitude.
Traditions are funny things. Over time the embeds get, well… buried.
Seth Godin has this to say about it today.
Black Friday. Really? I hate the name. Black, the absence of light, love, or gratitude.
My wife, Donna had to explain it to me. Keep in mind, such has been my own transformation, that she was tutoring a man with approximately 20 years of product manufacturing and retail experience. This is what she told me last night as my sons, and two of my colleagues were sharing some Thanksgiving time together.
“David, Black Friday is about putting retailers back in the black on their balance sheets. You know, as opposed to being in the red! ”
“Oh, I see.” And I did. But likely not what she thought.
We are so wrapped up in the day to day struggles here in this country that we are easily sold out, and¬† that¬† personal resolve, it sometimes becomes an unwitting and yes, even unwilling participant in something we ought to refrain from.
Well why should we resist? I mean, isn’t this supposed to be about giving? What are we to do?
Easy. Never stop doing what we can, and do it for no other purpose as to act in an expression of what is in our heart. Better make sure what is in there is not Black. It really needs to be white.
This weekend, Donna is having a company sale at her retail and online stores. But her take is a little bit different. Hurricane Sandy gutted the East Coast. There is no way existing Govt programs are going to be able to do much to alleviate suffering as Winter descends.
All week long, while I had been wrestling with issues regarding Blue Ocean Sciences and OceanLovers tech project for radiation remediation in Japan, Donna had been studying up on the problem of the East Coast. I had given her little in the way of hard advice, but had explained what to look for.
So here is what Donna found. On the East Coast is a group Called Clean Ocean Action. For many years they have coordinated social and environmental programs on the East Coast. On Dec 8th they have a projects call, were they want everyone to contact them and will act as a liason to put resources where they need to go. As a trained first responder, I have to state and underscore, that this is VERY smart.
So instead of a Black Friday push, Donna and Betty B will donate 25% of all sales both online and in her store all weekend long, to Clean Ocean Action, and write a check and send it on Monday. NOT black. Green. Understand?
That is how we all ought to think: reach out, connect, and do so intelligently.
Giving is really about the beneficiary and not us, as the givers. That gets buried, much as one would think that it does not.
My brilliant friend Pete Ippel, left me a note on Facebook which I found this morning. A youtube piece called Buy NOTHING Day.
“Gratitude. It is a response to the gifts that are given to us in life. And when we commit to a life of gratitude, life becomes a complete gift of receiving and giving. It brings peace and contentment as a result. “-¬† Dr. Ed Brenegar
I unfortunately do not sell much, but I do have affiliates who carry some of my work.
This weekend, Solitary Exposure is doing a promotional sale. Donna also has a bit of my framed Artwork that she sells in her Fir St Store here in Ventura. So let’s do this. I will take 25% of my royalty payments from all sales via Betty B and Solitary Exposure from today till Christmas, and write a check to Clean Ocean Action in their mission to alleviate suffering from Hurricane Sandy.
But what I want any one you to do is this: say or write to Larry Beard or Donna, that you are grateful for what they are doing. Express gratitude in word and deed.
It is what is in my own heart, after much study about what goes on in Japan right now. I will write on that when I have a bit more time.
Aloha oe, a hui ho.