"Love is a harsh and dreadful thing to ask of us, but it is the only answer."--Dorothy Day


Giving Thanks (2).

As is the tradition of most families on Thanksgiving, I have more than once this week gone around the table and told what I am thankful for this year. My answers, for the past few years at least, are always the same.

(1) Work...Despite the fact that my job is at times so, so difficult and so, so frustrating, I know that I am one of very few people in the world who is doing something that they truly love, and who gets to daily follow their calling in life. On good days, I know that I am doing something that will change the world at least a little bit, so I will press on through the bad days, and be grateful for the opportunity to do it.

(2) The greatest thing in the whole wide world, my friends. The people I have collected in my journey over the years are amazing, brilliant, quirky, kind, hilarious people. They are people I have known since childhood, and with whom my relationship has at times waxed and waned, but who I know will always be a part of my life. And they are people who I've known for only a short time, but with whom I experience a sort of love at first sight, knowing the first time I meet them that we will indeed be wonderful friends. And people everywhere in between. It is one of the things unique to living in New York City, the power of friendships that are formed here. We all come here on our own unique exploratory expeditions, knowing maybe two people from our pre-New York lives, and we begin to build a life. These are the people with whom we spend holidays and birthdays, days good and bad and ugly, and all of the important moments of our lives. All but one of the people I spent Thanksgiving with yesterday were people who I didn't really know at all this time last year, but I can certainly say that it was one of the best, most love-filled holidays I have ever had.

(3) The opportunity to live in New York City. The extraordinary place that makes it all possible.


Giving Thanks.

Three Beautiful Things for Thanksgiving Week.

(1) Repairing
rather than replacing things.

(2) Getting back to work with Street to Home.

(3) The upcoming Drunken Foodie Thanksgiving.


Standing together.

This weekend, in all 50 states, there will be simultaneous protests against Proposition 8 and all of the other anti-gay legislation that has been passed and that will certainly come. See you Saturday. Join the impact.


Day One.

I awoke this morning in disbelief of the events of last night. The first thing I did was check the news to make sure that nothing had happened in the middle of the night (or really the wee-small hours of the morning) to make the news media take it back. Last night was maybe the greatest day of my life.

I spent the evening with friends in Crown Heights, Brooklyn, and it was decided that those of us from red states (representing Tennessee, Ohio, New Mexico, and Texas) would have to touch a worm from the compost bin if our states didn't go blue. The section of Pennsylvania where I worked turned blue, justifying my blisters and papercuts. Ohio and New Mexico went blue quickly, and my other potential worm toucher and I waited with baited breath. But before they could even declare defeat in our states, something happened. As we flipped channels, ending a period of mocking for Fox News, we were greeted by the caption, "OBAMA DECLARED PRESIDENT-ELECT." Confused and perplexed, we yelled and screamed and flipped through the channels, checked in the Internet and got quiet for one small moment when we collectively realized what this meant. It was then that we heard that cheers from the streets, and joined in. We ran up to the roof, and joined in the revelry...with people running up and down the street, hanging out of windows, jumping up and down on rooftops, horns honking. This was like nothing any of us had ever experienced. We called our friends and family around the country to share our joys. We texted and updated statuses, opened the champagne, still making declarations of disbelief.

We ran back down to watch the speeches, still hearing the woots from the street. Mocked our foe a bit. And waited from Senator Obama to come on. We watched Fox News again, seeing if anyone would throw up. And then we listened to the speech of the president-elect. Our president. Loving those words...Our president.

We decided that we're going to the inauguration, as the music will actually be good this year. And we're too close to not be there for this amazing day. And then we remember that we all had to work tomorrow.

I came to work this morning, hoping for the party to continue on my train ride in. To see someone whose smile was as wide as mine. But everyone was sleepy and unemotional. But at my job it was different. Every conversation has a new optimism. Every mention of the word hope has more meaning. Today is truly a new day, as difficult as any here, but with underlying promise, and a sense of peace that was not here yesterday. Nothing has really changed, but there is something in the air. To quote Mr. Obama "While we breathe, we will hope."


One Last Push.

I promise this is my last ad of the political season. I promise...now Come Out and Vote!

Two Days in Philadelphia.

On Sunday morning (earlier than I should ever be awake) I went to Philadelphia to work with the Obama campaign doing door-to-door canvassing and phone banking. I was there for Sunday and Monday, to help them do their last minute "Get Out the Vote" effort, and I can't even tell you what it has been like to work with these people. In most crowds that I'm in, I'm the most impassioned person in the room. I get really fired up about stuff and can talk pretty much anyone into submission. But I am nothing compared to these people. They are hard core. It was just amazing to see how many people have taken vacations and weekends, and brought their spouses and children, to come for however long they can to be a part of this. And all of the people I met were so engaging, and so invested, and so hopeful for something better to come.