Mar 23 2011

you can take the turnip [day 299]

A long time ago, I had a friend a that used the saying, “You can’t get blood from a turnip, but you can take the turnip.”  I never paid that much attention to it, as I really didn’t need a turnip.  Fast forward many years and here we go with the turnips again.  According to my kids, I fell off a turnip truck, however if you ask them what that means, they don’t have a clue.  I’m not sure how turnips got such a bad rap, but they seem to be associated with not-so-nice references to people.  So let’s say you take the turnip.  What will you do with it?  You could throw it in the trash, deeming it useless.  Or maybe you could cook something with it, finding a small purpose for it.

I won an iPad 2 from actsofsharing.com yesterday.  That sounds really good, right?  It is.  Did I need an iPad?  No, I didn’t, but it sure is cool to have won an iPad.  The contest they were running was to see who could get the most new friends on their sharing site in a weekend.  I decided to try and win this, not only for the iPad, but because of the greater good of what they’re doing.  Here’s their mission statement:

It’s simple. Share the things you have with those around you. Nothing new, in fact, it’s something we have all engaged in at one time or another. And yet, we haven’t even touched the potential of this basic but most necessary act. Imagine a community of people like the early church, mentioned above, who made available every item which they had in their possession, who valued their neighbors as they valued themselves. Imagine being able to access tens and hundreds of times more stuff than you yourself have in your home. Imagine, before deciding to purchase an item, the ability to borrow it and try it out for yourself? In short, what if this community mentioned in the book of Acts was made manifest today, 2,000 years later? At Acts of Sharing, we’ve been imagining the implications, and we’re incredibly excited. Sharing is nothing original, but we think it’s revolutionary. And it will change everything.

I decided to take the good a step further.  If I won this, I told my friends I would share it on AOS.  (yes, it will be listed the minute I receive it)  Okay, one more step, I also told them I would donate $500 to The Samaritan Inn, our local homeless shelter.  So let’s look at the big picture of what happened here.

  • 55 of my friends are now sharing their stuff.  Not everyone will use this site, but several of my friends are already sharing their things.
  • Those 55 friends have more friends they can share with.  This will grow the sharing community.
  • My friends and I now have an iPad to share.
  • The Samaritan Inn received a nice donation and the homeless community was helped in the process.
  • A friend of mine decided to do a similar deal with her friends, and  as she said, she shamelessly stole my plan.  I wish everyone would steal plans like this!  That encouraged me to be more competitive.  [insert evil laugh]
  • I’ve now multiplied my accessibility to stuff without buying anything new and I’ve done the same for my friends.  Continue reading

Dec 18 2010

read the Bible and win an iPad! [day 206]

I found something in my email this morning, something which disturbed me greatly.  It was from YouVersion, the online Bible app from lifechurch.tv.  Now I love this app, I use it a lot to read the Bible, look up scriptures, post live church events and network with other people that read the Bible.  Today, they are promoting a special event on Christmas, “Global Share the Bible Day”.  What a great idea!  The purpose is to help the world remember the true meaning of Christmas, and to do that, they’re giving away a free iPad, iPhone 4 or Nexus S.  Here’s the excerpt:

A Special Event on Christmas Day and a Giveaway!

We’re declaring Saturday, December 25, “Global Share the Bible Day,” and we hope you’ll join us in helping the world remember the true meaning of Christmas. On December 25, let’s draw as much attention as we can to the Bible—the story of God’s love for us.

Now: Spread the Word (and Win!)

Please start inviting people now to join us on December 25. If you’ll connect your free YouVersion account and post online about Global Share the Bible Day, we’ll register you to win your choice of one of five gifts: an iPad, an iPhone 4, or a Nexus S!

First of all, whomever posted this can’t count.  3 gifts listed, yet you can choose from 5.  Wow.  So if we read the Bible and spread the Word, we can possibly win electronics.  I’m guessing they’re doing the giveaway as an incentive for people to participate.  Isn’t this defeating the purpose?  If Christmas has become consumed with pandemonium, consumerism, selfishness, economic hardship, and most of all… materialism, isn’t this “incentive” really participating in the forgetfulness of Jesus’ birth?

Please don’t misunderstand me.  I like YouVersion and I will still use it.  I am, however, very disappointed in this materialistic persuasion, which is the whole reason we need to remember what Christmas is all about.

I encourage everyone to read the Bible on Christmas day, not to win stuff, but to remember and celebrate Christmas in the right way for the right reasons.  Merry Christmas, or better yet, happy birthday to you Jesus!


Dec 12 2010

robinhood is good, homeLESS, organized hoarders and more… [day 200]

Is 200 a milestone in the challenge?  No, it’s just a nice, round, even number.  I remember my mom pumping gas into the car when I was little and she always rounded it up to a full dollar amount, even if that meant topping it off to the point it overflowed.  I asked why and she replied, “I don’t know, I just like to do it that way.”  Can we say OCD?  My OCD isn’t that bad or maybe focused somewhere else, so 200 is just that… 200.

I have a short follow up on the Oprah post.  I don’t really follow her or much of anything on television, so I did not know that she is starting her own network.  The Oprah Winfrey Network, or OWN.  How completely appropriate.  After all, she does OWN a lot.  If those who die with the most win, then she’ll be the number one winner in whatever afterlife she believes in this week, thus the other namesake, WINfrey.  Well, Hoo(op)RAH for her.   Continue reading


Aug 30 2010

triple win!!!! [day 96]

I saw a friend yesterday doing a random act of kindness.  He was giving something away that he didn’t need anymore, and giving it to someone that could use it.  She kept insisting that she needed to pay him, and he was insisting that she doesn’t need to.

What do you do in these situations?  The person on the receiving end is really feeling a need to pay something for what you’re giving them or they wouldn’t offer several times.  You are sincere about just giving the items away, not expecting or wanting payment.  Solution?  Tell the person on the receiving end that you don’t need the money, but there are many good organizations that do.  Ask the person to give whatever money they would have given you, but give it to your favorite cause.  It’s a win-win-win situation.  You get rid of the stuff you didn’t need, your friend gets something they need without feeling like they owe you and a good cause gets some money to further their work.

Be prepared.

What is your favorite cause?  It’s not only important to have a cause in mind, but know how they accept donations.  Mine is online and they accept donations via check or PayPal.  Okay, so that’s only one of my many favorites…  Also, if the person doesn’t have the money, but still wants to do something, you can encourage them to donate some of their stuff to a thrift store or help serve others through one of the organizations.