Can you find me in this picture?
Have I told you lately that I love you? I mean, wow. How lucky can a girl be to have friends like you? You guys are just too awesome for words. Truly. I don’t even know what to say. Can I have you all over for dinner? (Actually, I have a plan for that. But I’ll tell you tomorrow.)
I couldn’t keep myself from popping to A) say thanks, you made me feel exactly like this photo, only more teary, B) I can’t believe how many F-bombs have been dropped here in the past 12 hours – it’s kind of like hearing your mom swear for the first time, and getting all giggly over it. Also, C) I want to share the news of a new project that has evolved since this morning into something real and exciting, thanks to you: you’ve inspired me to get over my damn self and go do something positive, to (at the risk of sounding syrupy and cliché) spread the love you’ve spread all over this blog like a thick layer of Nutella. (As someone put it via email: don’t let the poobumbottoms get you down! Mike and I have been walking around saying that all night. It may just be my new mantra.)
I stepped back and shuffled things into perspective, and channeled my energies toward doing something to help those in need in Haiti.
The alarm went off at 7 this morning, just in time for the world news. I lay there, puffy-eyed from the night before, listening to the latest on what’s going on. It’s one of those awful situations made even more frustrating by the helplessness of it all – to be so far away, unable to just go and dig through the rubble. The options seem limited to financial support via various organizations, which is fine, but I want to do more. Do something. It occurred to me that I should what I know, and draw on the resources I know. (I always remember Scott Thompson from Kids in the Hall dressed as the Queen, advising some other character in whatever sketch it was to write what you know! And so when I think of this advice it’s always in a high-pitched Scott Thompson voice with a bad British accent.) I know food, and recipes, and cookbooks. I know fantastic food writers and bloggers all over the world, I know food media, and I have a wonderful, supportive, uplifting audience. I could act as a sort of catalyst and mobilize a larger group, drawing on their talents to make a bigger impact. I could do that. And I know how many people out there are as frustrated as I am, wanting to do something but not knowing what.
So remember Band Aid? I’m launching Blog Aid. By 7:30 this morning I had registered the domain www.blogaid.org, and here’s my plan: I’m connecting with my favorite food writers and bloggers to gather recipes and photos to compile in a cookbook to actually publish and sell, with 100% of proceeds going to Haitian relief.
I have graphic designer and editor friends who have volunteered their time and are standing by to get to work, and I’ll be hunting down a printer or printers to donate (or at least slash prices on) their services. (Know anyone?) I emailed Chef Michael Smith right away with a rambling note summing up the above, and (not surprisingly) before noon he called me back and left a long message saying yes, absolutely, he’s one-hundred-percent on board with this in any way I need him to be, despite the fact that he’s already doing a Haitian fundraising dinner this Monday before he leaves for Whistler to prep for the Olympics. What a guy.
Since then I’ve had equally earnest replies from Shauna and Danny of Gluten-free Girl and the Chef, Matt of Matt Bites, Helen of Tartelette, Melissa of The Travelers’ Lunchbox, Catharine of Weelicious, Tara of Seven Spoons, Tea of Tea & Cookies, Jess of Sweet Amandine, Brooke of Tongue-n-Cheeky, Pierre of Kitchen Scraps and Aimée of Under the High Chair among others, all saying the same: absolutely! what can I do? Yet more evidence of how much good there is in people. So now I have to get moving on it. Fast.
Of course the Canadian government has promised to match all donations made by Canadians to the Red Cross and other relief efforts, so we’ll be able to double what we raise. Just think: if we together (not just here – don’t worry – but through our collective blogs, Twitter and Facebook) sold a thousand books at $25 each, that’s $25,000 – which would then be doubled to $50,000, all going to Haiti via the Red Cross. I wonder if Mike realizes he’s going to be shipping all these books?
My hope is that by next week we’ll all have buttons up on our blogs linked to a PayPal site where people can actually order the book, with the caveat that it will get shipped just as soon as they come off the printer.
So there you go. Thank you for fortifying me.
And sorry, I’ve derailed from delivering you any sort of food news and recipes, haven’t I? Just pull that frozen pizza out and pop it in the oven – go ahead, I give you a free pass.