September 14, 2001

I'm weeping with joy at the email I just got from Jessica.
SUBJECT: Thanks for the entry, Dude

I've been working in New York the last two days as Red Cross relief. Rightnow, we're feeding and watering the emergency services folk, and thesoldiers (there's a lot of 'em, and there's F-15s crossing the skies everyfew minutes). We've had TONS of people coming into the chapter where I work(my paid employment is Red Cross computer weenie, my volunteer thing is RedCross disaster work) to help, whether it's with food or money or blood orwhatever. Everyone's been so great about it...

Right now I'm trying to get together all the phone numbers and contactinformation so we can send people to an appropriate web page to see what thedetails are. Our phone system is about to explode. We appreciate thestatement of support at Schlock, though.

Let me know if you want any details or anything. You can reach me here or at(email address deleted for Jessica's privacy).

Thanks, Mr. Tayler. Much appreciated.

-Jessica

I've emailed her, and I'll post what links she asks me to right here, probably on the 15th. Jessica, you have no idea what it means to me to know that I have helped in some way.

Folks, if you haven't seen it already, have a look at what Amazon and PayPal have done to set up relief funds. Between the two of them, they've collected over four million dollars as of this writing. All fees are being waived, so 100% of the donations are going towards the American Red Cross Disaster Relief fund. That's the fund that pays for what Jessica is out there doing, among other things.

In the time it took me to write this, some $20,000 was donated at Amazon. America is pulling together on this, my friends. I have a lot of love for this nation.

There are just under 5,000 readers of Schlock Mercenary out there, judging by my server logs. If each of you gave just $1,000 to the relief funds, we'd more than DOUBLE the amount collected so far. But seriously, every little bit counts, so give what you can. I know that most of us do not have a bunch of money to spare, but if you were planning to eat out tonight, or planning on a movie this weekend, I'm sure there's $20 or so you could give, if you agree to endure just a wee bit of personal privation.

It should go without saying that if you were considering contributing to Schlock Mercenary this month, I don't want your money. Send it to the Red Cross. I've yanked the "tip the cartoonist" donation links for the time being.

And if you want to 'give 'till it hurts,' consider giving blood. And consider doing it a week or two from now, when claret passions have died down a bit, and the blood banks are again running low.

I'll be giving blood sometime next week, probably, but I hit the 'Red-Cross-Cha-CHING' button over at Amazon this evening. It felt good. Not half so good as hearing from Jessica made me feel. I really, really wish I could be on the streets of manhattan right now, putting my muscle where my mouth is (instead of four inches higher where the space between my ears is).

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