One of the groups I belong to on Facebook is for Compassion sponsors. From time to time...actually frequently...someone will post a photo of some child who has caught their eye, that they can't afford to sponsor themselves but that they thought someone in the group would like to know about. They frequently tug at my heart strings, especially the cute little ones, but I am at the maximum amount I can afford to sponsor children and have to harden my heart.
The child that caught someone's eye today is this 10 year old boy from Uganda. She wrote,
This breaks my heart... this boy is an orphan who lives with his aunt and uncle and his name is literally ALONE. Plus he lives in an AIDS-affected area AND in an area with a high risk of child exploitation and abuse. Please pray with me that he gets a loving sponsor who will speak God's love into his life!
It broke my heart too, but I simply could not afford to sponsor another child.
Today is Sunday, which is the day I write to all of the Compassion kids. I do it with the Compassion on-line e-mail option, where you can choose from among a bunch of stationeries, write your letter, and include up to 13 different photos.
When I logged into Compassion, there was a note asking me to call the office because there was news about one of my sponsored children. When I called up the list of children to start writing the letters, I noticed that my newest sponsored child, Adriano from Brasil, was no longer on the list, which means he has left the program. I haven't had him long enough to form much of a bond, and had not yet received a letter from him, so it didn't give me a pang in my heart to lose him...what it did was to make me realize that I could take on the sponsorship of Alone.
I mean, how can you NOT open your heart to an orphan named "Alone" ?? All I know about him right now is that he helps his uncle and aunt by carrying water, gathering firewood and gardening. His uncle is sometimes employed as a farmer and his aunt is also sometimes employed as a farmer. Alone participates in church activities. He is also in primary school where his performance is average. Soccer, playing with cars and singing are his favorite activities.
It takes about two weeks before I get all of the materials about him in the mail, but I usually end up writing an introductory letter before that time. I look forward to helping him realize he's not so much "alone" as he was before.
Today was one of those days where I hardly left my desk. There was so much to do, though somehow watching Walt sweating out in the yard, I felt guilty for not doing more.
I started out writing reviews for two shows. A long review of both for the Davis paper, a shorter review of one for the Sacramento paper and then what we call a "stage pick" (50 words) for the other. Surprisingly a "stage pick" takes almost as long to write as a longer review because you have to get the same information in in just a fraction of the length. I also work hard to make reviews for both papers "unique," so I don't just plagiarize myself in the second paper.
Writing to the Compassion kids usually takes a good hour. And then it was time to design the new look for August for Funny the World. That always takes more than an hour. You'd think that after all this time, I would have it down to a science...and I have but it still involves choosing wallpaper, designing a logo, making the colors match the wallpaper, and a bunch of other things.
When I finished I took a break and sat down in front of the TV. The SyFy channel has been advertising all week that Sharknado 4 was premiering today. It had just started and I sat down to watch it.
Now, your life may be too busy to know about Sharknado but it is a gawdawful horror series about a gigantic storm that causes sharks to rain down on whatever city it happens to be over (much worse than "raining cats and dogs").
The man who has become hero of these shark apocalypse movies is named Fin and most of his scenes usually involve his battling many sharks with a chain saw.
There is always a lot of blood, scenes of limbs being torn off by attacking sharks, people being swallowed by sharks (including Fin, who managed to use his buzz saw to escape from the belly of the first beast who swallowed him in Sharknado 1). But the thing quickly gained cult status, mostly because of the plethora of famous people who make cameo appearances.
Midway through the movie today, I realized that I was not, in fact watching Sharknado 4 but #2 and that #4 would not be shown until 8 p.m. I cannot believe that I sat here all afternoon watching that stupid movie. Sharknado 4 is also called "The Fourth Awakens," which gives you an idea of how the dialog goes. At one point in #2 Fin and his family are trapped in a taxi cab driven by Judd Hirsch in a flooded Broadway St. Fin manages to get most of his family to safety by means of a MacGyver-like pulley contraption he fixes because there just happens to be an overhead pole that he can wrap a rope which Hirsch conveniently had in his front seat around. But then the rope slips off and Fin is left alone on the sinking taxi, surrounded by sharks, so, using them as stepping stones, he manages to cross the river and get to the street. His brother then tells him that he really "jumped the shark."
Yes, I actually sat through six hours of this stuff. I don't get nearly the fun that most people do. I probably miss almost all of the in-jokes an I am so unfamiliar with current pop icons, I miss most of them. I'm doing good to recognize the Today Show hosts
I also chuckled every time they showed a weather report
There were 40 guest appearances in #3 and I recognized almost none of them, so I don't know who was famous and who was not. I did recognize one guy, someone working at NASA (the sharks were in space this time) and it was driving me nuts trying to figure out who that actor was until I realized it was Congressman Anthony Weiner! In that version Ann Coulter was the vice president to Mark Cuban's president. I didn't see Coulter get eaten by a shark, but I hope she did.
I recognized Frankie Muniz, but could not remember his name. His death scene was positively incredible. All of his limbs were slowly eaten by sharks one by one, until he was entirely limbless. He had to slither across the ground in order to push a button to set off the bomb that killed the sharks with his head!
At the end Fin's pregnant wife (whose hand had been eaten off by a shark, and had been replaced by a contraption which could convert into a buzz saw) is swallowed by a shark. Fin and his buzz saw are swallowed by another shark and both sharks conveniently land on a beach, where Fin saws his way out--again. He then notice movement in the shark nearby, a tear begins in the side of the shark and soon the head of a baby emerges (and after, Fin saws his wife out...she had given birth inside the shark. Of course. The baby had no umbilical cord, so I guess she sawed it off with her buzz saw hand)
If there is anything positive about spending six hours watching this totally ridiculous series, it's that it was six hours when I did not hear the word "Trump." And that is not a waste of time at all!