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Happy Birthday to Me!

September 14, 2010

If you haven’t seen the final video installment of Charity:Water’s first well for this year’s September campaign, here you go:

If you haven’t chipped in to help provide clean drinking water to the Bayaka people of the Central African Republic, here you go.

It’s commonly understood that birthdays become less and less of a deal the older you get. We resort to celebrating the ones that end in zero because those at least seem like milestones. And that’s okay. ‘Cause by the 27th one, cake and dinner with a few loved ones is as good as it gets and you know that half of the gifts you would have gotten would have been dust-collectors anyway.

Not a tragedy.

The tragedy is that we start to think that every other day of the year is just like the one before it as well, or the one exactly a year before. We start to think that because nothing spectacular happened yesterday, nothing spectacular could happen today. We start to think that this is all there is – wake up, eat, work, eat, work, play with the kids, eat, sleep, rinse, repeat. We start to think the mundane is normal and the best we can do is be happy within it.

But it’s not normal. Our mundane is someone else’s paradise, and sometimes you just have to wake up long enough to throw a monkey wrench in your mundane to grind it to a halt.

September 14 is my birthday and your monkey wrench. Skip Starbucks, skip lunch, skip extra beverages and just drink water for a day and force yourself to recognize how amazing it is that you can get clean water on command, skip dessert, and buy a birthday gift. Not for me – for the people in central Africa whom the world has forgotten. It might not feel spectacular, it might not feel like waking up, it might not feel like a grinding halt to the mundane – but for someone else it will.

$27 could buy a birthday gift that I’d return or store or re-gift, or it could buy 20 more birthdays for one Bayaka child. Give.

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One Comment leave one →
  1. September 15, 2010 12:51 am

    Very cool. Happy birthday…

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