Roast – March 5th

Sometimes i have half a good idea.

A few weeks back i was meeting with Piper and Sherri who run the Reading Window School which does literacy work mostly for local economically disadvantaged children of color.  The program is amazing, over the many years they have taught over 200 kids to read, using one-on-one techniques, catching them up with their peers, getting them excited about literacy.  The program is influenced by behaviorist principals rewarding students for even trying to read.  And my son refused to read before he started and since he completed he reads all the time.

As with many small non-profits they are struggling for funds to stay open.   I thought to myself, lets do something fun.  We could roast Piper.  This 87 year old woman has more fire and character than most mortals.  She has also touched the lives positively of lots of people.  And most importantly for a roast, there are lots of funny stories about her.  Let’ do a roast as fundraiser and bring in some new money not from foundations.

We tried to set it up, dug up old students addresses, printed post cards, organized the cook, sent out an email blast, found an MC and more.  But it did not pull together, Piper was convinced that while we had a number of RSVPs, the event was not going to make much money.  We canceled it a couple weeks before it was to happen.

After New Years i was thinking about how to improve the idea, to have a real fundraiser that made money.  I thought of the Rob Jones roast we did a couple years back which was very satisfying and fun.  And a big piece of what it had going for it was that Rob was a big character is pleasurable to tease.  You cant tease Piper too much, it feels unfair.  So i thought about it some more.

“We should roast me.” I thought with stunning immodesty.  There are a number of people who would pay money to come and make fun of me in front of a large group of people.  And it will make a lot of people happy to see me teased.

So on the occasion of my 54th birthday on March 5th, 2011 in the ZK dining room Rob Jones and hopefully the incredibly talented Beth Grupp will host a benefit roast of yours truly.  Just the MCs interaction alone would make it worth the price of admission (which is sliding scale).

All the money and labor credits (communards have to pay to get in) will go to support kid literacy work.

Sometimes a half good idea is just the wrong idea.