Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Panhandling

Another mid week post?  What is the world coming to?!  It must mean that I have a free minute to breathe if you can believe that.  ;)

So yesterday I did something a bit crazy that would have made my momma faint, and was most definitely out of my comfort zone.  I panhandled for money!

As some of you see at the top right of the blog, part of running with Team in Training for the Nike Women's Half requires me to do fundraising for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society.  There is a minimum amount of money you have to raise, and whatever you don't raise, you pay the difference.  It's definitely been a challenge, and frankly, a deterrent from ever doing a TNT event again.  It's not that the cause isn't wonderful, but if you don't have a big network of friends/family, then raising money is hard.  It doesn't help that I have been balls to the wall busy, so I don't exactly have time to put on fundraisers, garage sales, etc.  I'm certainly not trying to poor mouth or grub for money.  I knew what I was signing up for when I signed up with TNT, I'm just stating the reality.

Regardless, both a coworker and myself are signed up and both are in the same boat.  Small families, a small/intimate network of friends, and so slammed with work and work trips that we barely are able to train to run the damn race, much less raise money.  One of the way that some people raise money is to do a "fill the bucket" campaign, but that's really a fancy way to say that they panhandle.  I am not fancy, so I'm calling it what is is.

The hilarious thing is, our intention to panhandle has been on the books for weeks, but we had to move the date because inevitably we kept getting heat waves.  The days we kept picking were 90+ degrees by the time they rolled around, and there was just no way in hell either of us intended to stand in that for 2 hours.  But we finally caught a break yesterday and the weather was great, so we went for it.

The whole thing was a bit nerve racking at first.  We went at rush hour so it was obviously crowded, and we were also concerned that an actual panhandler would already be down at that spot.  I certainly wasn't about to get into some kind of fight with a hobo.  Luckily no one was there, so we panhandled for about 2 hours.  I have to admit that on a social experiment kind of level, it was one of the more interesting and humbling things I've done.  Some interesting observations I have from my experience:

  • Men were way more likely to give than women.  
  • WAY too many people text and drive, adding to what was already a huge pet peeve of mine!
  • We thought that the rich folks from Intel would be our biggest donators, but we were wrong.  All the people in rich fancy cars kept their windows rolled up tight, while construction workers and other average Joe's happily handed us money.
  • People are kinder than I thought.  We didn't get a single ugly, weird or lewd comment. 
We made about $300, which for 2 hours of work is pretty astounding.  It's like, so WHY exactly am I working an 9-5 job?  My coworker and I split the money down the middle, which definitely helps both of our fundraising goals

Anyway, just thought you guys might enjoy the little mid week tidbit!

1 comment:

  1. That's awesome! I have done a few events where I needed to raise money, and for sure it's not my favorite thing. It's hard for me to ask people for things, even though I am constantly buying stuff from their kids school sales or donating money for one thing or another.... you'd think I'd have no qualms about asking others to pitch in!

    Good luck to you, raising the rest of the money!

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