Tuesday, October 30, 2007

to hell with yellow ribbons, we want Halo

Borne from the ashes of bad taste, I present you a reformed blogger.

For those with an RSS feed or what have you, you may have noticed, some days ago, a posting on Benazir Bhutto's return to Pakistan after years in exile. You may also have noticed that it was quickly deleted.

This is because I am capable of realizing when I'm terribly, terribly wrong... as was (fortunately) pointed out to me by a handful of people whom I deeply respect.

You see, in a rather macabre brainstorming session, I and some of my crewmates decided on creating the World's First Benazir Bhutto Death Pool; it satiated our need for dark and cynical humor and it provided us an opportunity to profit (in the event she did not perish before the New Year) by making off with a brand-new XBox 360.

Well, as I've said... it was deleted in short order. I apologized for my terrible taste and thanked those that protested (even those that were reluctant to do so.) However, in all honesty, I forgot about the Donate Now button I had scripted into my blog's sidebar.

Several kind souls over the last week or so reminded me it was there by actually clicking on it and coughing-up hard-earned cash.

Though it was accurately described as "Donate $1 towards an XBox for my unit", it invariably led the charitable to a payment screen that inaccurately labeled the process as "Benazir's Death Pool."

Notably, one loving reader actually went through the hell that must have been hacking the process and discovered a way to donate more than the solitary dollar I'd been asking for.

So, here's the deal. Firstly, I've repaired the link so that it no longer dredges-up the title of the horrible idea that was the Death Pool. Secondly, I've modified it so that it no longer limits the kind soul to a single dollar's donation.

Now then. I am very reluctant to accept charity (even on behalf of my unit, and even despite the "Support the Troops" sort of vibe it has...) but I have decided to honor of both those people that aptly told me what an asshat idea the Death Pool was as well as those that have already donated. Consequently, I will leave the button up but this will be the last time I mention it.

It's purpose, if I haven't been clear: to donate towards the purchase of a Microsoft XBox 360 for my unit*. Here's the kicker, though: I will match every dollar donated until the Box's cost has been met (at which point, I'll kill the button.) Importantly, no one in the unit will know... they'll just get a Box and be told that good friends of mine back in D.C. and around the world donated towards its purchase. I think I'll put up some sort of bar chart or what have you, so we can track the total donations versus the goal**.

Lastly, I would be remiss if I didn't add my spiel: there are countless better ways to spend your dollars, and there are countless better ways to Support the Troops. (A special cheers to Alex for her K-9 donations and Hanna for her care packages.) If you'd like to do something for our deployed soldiers, Sailors, airmen and Marines deployed in Iraq, Afghanistan and the Horn of Africa that has real meaning and impact, visit any of the sites listed here.

There you have it. And a most sincere thank you.

*(unit): Technically, this isn't correct. I stay here in the Horn, and units roll in and roll out. I'm the continuity guy. As a result, no one particular unit will own the Xbox; it'll just be here for the guys to play with while they're deployed. Once they've gone, they also know that they'll be back. Like me.

**(goal): From AAFES (the military exchange, no sales tax!): Limited Edition Halo 3 Xbox 360 System w/Halo 3 Game Bundle = $574.95. Consequently, the goal is $287 (as I'll match $ for $.)


Slightly Disorganized said...

I'll do my part after pay day. better use of my money anyways.

halo for the boys = good cause.
pony hair stilettos = possible, even highly likely, waste of money.

the bee in dc said...

i'm in a wedding next march. on the wedding registry, there is an XBox. i am unsure of what to think about this. but i guess everyone loves an xbox!