Tragedy begins at home.

Paris is burning, but Megan is on the bus home from her second job at 2am and hardly knows today’s world news. She’s thinking about what she can make for three school lunches that need to head out the door in a few hours, how she will pay her overdue rent and if she can get just three hour’s sleep before leaving to her other job.
Important things are happening in the world tonight.
I know John has been up most of the night not because he’s a night owl, but because he’s an 81 year old vet whose gas was shut off last week. He’s cold and can’t get a warm meal until next week sometime when his $700 check arrives to pay the bill, the rent and a ride to the food bank to pick up leftovers others have donated.
Important things are happening in the world tonight.
And here I sit in shiny black shoes and a borrowed suit at 430am at my office, because I know they’re awake and they are the important things and because I think I’ve crafted a plan that might help their tragedies.
Important things are happening in the world tonight.
I’m always in the office at this time of the morning. It’s quiet and I’m alone to think about these important things. I’m not generally wearing a suit and shiny shoes, but tonight I will be at an event with over 400 people who need to hear about what’s important.
I honestly don’t care about winning, but I do care about the possibilities it may bring to our little non-profit in old Henderson and how, if translated correctly, some important people tonight might pause and hear about people like Megan and John and 10,000 more like them. And maybe they’ll give a dollar to help.
Our agency was nominated for Outstanding Non-Profit of 2015 and the winner will be announced this evening over a gourmet dinner in a room full of suits at a luxury hotel. Win or lose, all nominees will win something for the people they serve every day. A voice.
People don’t like sad stories, but sad stories can move the right people to do the right things to help make fewer sad stories. I believe that’s important.
So I’ll sit there for a few hours, maybe win, likely not, but I’ll have the captive ears of a privileged few who need to know the important things that are happening in this world, right here at home.
And taking off this suit and uncomfortable shoes, I can sleep well tonight, knowing I went to bat for the tragedies which begin at home and end with charity.