Monday, December 21, 2015

Socks and underwear

As a kid, I thought socks and underwear were shitty holiday gifts. But the week before Christmas, we delivered socks at a place that also gives out underwear, and the recipents couldn't be happier.

Each year, my organization gets donations for and puts together bags of toiletry items, socks and a warm item (hat, scarf, gloves, etc.) for people living with mental illness who are homeless. I'm super proud of our outreach committee because we put this on ourselves this year, with no corporate sponsorship, and we got more than 500 bags of donations!

I volunteer at the organization where we donated them, and got to help at the holiday party last Saturday. People were so happy to get the basics. It was humbling. I've never had to get socks or toothpaste from complete strangers.

That's me and my friend K with Donnie, "Red," and Rick. 

What never ceases to amaze me, however, is that some idiots give us USED things that no one would want.

A tip for the uninitiated: no one wants your used socks or chapsticks! Or condoms, for that matter. 
We also got condoms donated from the health department, which cracked up some of the guests.
One lady asked me, "Why did we get condoms?" And I replied, "We want everyone to have as Merry a Christmas as possible!"

Hope you enjoy the holidays. If you are able, think about taking some new socks or undies to your local organization that helps the homeless. It will be much appreciated.

Tuesday, December 01, 2015

You can has social skillz?

Sometimes my social filters just disappear. Not often, but always at an inopportune time. And horribly. (Like remarking to a person with low vision the other day, "Put on your sunglasses! Otherwise the sun will blind you!" Yes, really.)

But a few times lately I've had the joy of hearing someone goof this way with me, and it made me feel so good to not be on the "oops" side of a social situation!

As with everything, I would not, could not make this up. To make you even more proud, I managed not to snicker until after situation #1 and situation #2.

Situation #1, over coffee with a volunteer.
Me: Referring to 20 years ago when I was in college and there weren't many mental health resources for students.
Volunteer: "You're that old?"
(Note: she is 70.)

Situation #2, at a work event with another volunteer.
Volunteer: "I really appreciate your help, and all that you do! AND you're bipolar!"
Me: "No, I'm not."
Volunteer: "Well, I know you're something. What are you?"
Me: "I have major depressive disorder."
Volunteer: "Well, that's even worse!"

Situation #3, on Thanksgiving with friends.
Me to friend A (who is a guy): "So how was that date with that girl Jennifer?"
Friend B to friend A: "Oh my God! I thought you were gay!"

We all laughed (including friend A) for five solid minutes. Meanwhile, friend A posted that exchange on his Facebook page, and one of his gay friends wrote back, "Boy, is her gaydar off!"

Just glad none of these were from me.