Thursday, April 16, 2009

Your Assignment, Should You Choose to Accept It

Embedding has been disabled for this video, so I can only give you a link. Before you do anything else you must go watch this video from Britain's Got Talent. One of the most extraordinary talents I've seen. You will be amazed. After I saw the video on YouTue this morning, I saw a story about it on The Today Show, so you may already be familiar with it, but if you haven't seen the whole thing, trust me, it's worth it. Bring Kleenex.

Now I have a couple of votes I'd like you to make should you be so inclined. No hard feelings if you don't feel you'd like to, but sometimes people just don't know that votes are being taken.

First, this one has about as good a shot as a snowball in hell, but The Yolo County SPCA is trying to win some money.

The Animal Rescue Site is awarding $100,000 in grants to eligible member rescue organizations. The grand prize is a $20,000 grant and there are many more prizes ranging from $1,000 for weekly winners up to $5,000 for the runner-up. There will be a winner in every state as well as other grants! The rescue organizations with the most votes will win. You can click to help animals at, and then vote for your favorite participating shelter, (vote for the Yolo County SPCA!). Clicking and voting are free, with no registration required. You can vote once every day during the Challenge, which started on April 13th, 2009.

There is a small link at the top of the Animal Rescue Site screen and then the rest should be fairly intuitive (zip code for this area is 95616, by the way). If you have a local animal rescue site you'd rather try to help, by all means do...but if you're feeling kindly toward all these puppies who gallop through my journal pages, maybe you'll toss a bone in the direction of the Yolo SPCA. (And while you're at it give a click on the site button itself to help provide food and medical attention to needy animals.)

And then there are the Webby Awards. These are awards given out to "the best" (obviously this is very subjective!) sites in various categories on the web. My friend, Tony Kahn (from the old Morning Stories days, and panelist on Says You) has a new web site called "Hi, Tony," which has been nominated for a Webby in the Personal Web Site category.

I'm hoping people will check out the web site and read the story he is writing about his chemotherapy treatments for his recently diagnosed lymphoma. He writes eloquently and my reason for asking you to vote for Tony is primarily to get you to go to the site and read what he's written thus far.

Now, I will warn you that I had a devil of a time trying to vote for Tony. In fact, this is the e-mail I sent to the webmaster of the Webby site:

I have to say that if I were voting for best web site, the Webby Awards would be at the very bottom.

It took me a lot of diligent trying just to log in. I received a link from a friend, and the link took me to an error page. Then I tried through a nominated web site link and it also took me to a page that said it could not load. This happened many times.

I did finally get through and though I have been registered on the site for several years, it did not recognize me, so I re-registered. It sent my activation code to my mailbox but when I clicked on it, it gave me another error page. When I attempted to input the code manually, it told me "something went wrong" and that the problem has been reported.

After what seemed like a very long time, I finally was recognized and I started to vote but the process was so slow and cumbersome, I cast votes only in a couple of categories and then gave up.

Surely you can improve this system for next year!

With that background, you may be reluctant to start any voting process for Tony, but do go and read his stuff, and then decide if you want to make the effort to try and vote. (He probably doesn't really care if he wins or not!)

And finally, this isn't something I'm hoping anybody can do anything about, but just something that makes me feel very sad and very helpless.

I wrote an entry about the vlogger Dougri, who died last week. Today I had more information and my worst fears were confirmed -- it wasn't the cancer that killed him, but he is presumed to have committed suicide.

While that is sad enough, this man who had so many internet friends and who was so open and so generous to everyone left no arrangements for the disposition of his remains and apparently has nobody close enough to him to make arrangements. So his body is sitting in the morgue and will be buried in a cemetery for the indigent.

I know Doug is beyond caring about what happens to his remains, but I just feel so sad that this man I had so many interactions with is going to be buried in a pauper's grave, presumably without even a marker.

We set a great store on having a "place" where we can go and visit our loved ones...and if nobody is going to come and visit you, does it really matter? But if I were independently wealthy, I'd be flying to Rhode Island to make sure that my friend had a proper burial.

Thanks for reading all of this. This journal entry will now self-destruct in 5 seconds...



lrayholly said...

The last part of your blog, about your friend Doug, is the part that I needed tissues for. I read your blog the other day about his passing. I had no knowledge of him before that. It was evident that he was a giving person, just by little things, like the cough drops. I didn't know him, but I am totally saddened by this latest news. My heart breaks for him and for all the friends he left behind. How sad that he felt the need to do this.

kathi said...

Put in votes for Yolo County SPCA and Tony's site (what a wonderful site, so glad I stopped by here and learned of it)! So very sorry to hear of your friend Doug's passing and am sad for you and his other 'net friends too, it is so hard to not be able to do anything when you want so much to be able to :(