Oct. 9th, 2011

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I heard about Occupy Wall Street through the news, and the Occupy Boston protest through the Globe and WBUR. This feels important to me, and I decided I wanted to do something to help—but camping in downtown Boston was not it. I discussed it with the Deacons at First Church Somerville, and got support but no firm plans. (Well, our minister was planning to take her kids, and some donations, down on Friday.) so then I sent a note to the church mailing list, announcing my plan to head down after church today. That got a bit more attention: in particular, the church admin sent me a link to a Google spreadsheet listing what they need. In the end, Harold Jones joined me, and Thom Whittemore donated some reusable plates. I had a bunch of reusable, plstic plates and plastic cutlery from my party supply as well. Harold and I stopped at Goodwill in Davis and picked up all the comforters and blankets they had: that set me back a whopping $50, then we took the T down to South Station. The protest is pretty obvious, once you step out of the red line station: bunch of tents and signs huddled on the ground in the middle of traffic and enormous buildings. This was, if I'm not mistaken, where the Boston Horticultural Society was supposed to build a botanic garden, but failed to organize themselves or anyone else. I think this was a better use of the space. It was messy, but organized and the young people in the camp were uniformly polite and pleasant. It was easy to spot the Logistics tent, where a young man thanked us for the blankets, and pointed us to the Food tent to drop off the plates and utensils. At the food tent, they were grateful for everything and seemed to have a plentiful supply of muffins and peanut butter, among other things. Harold and I then made a loop though the camp to absorb the atmosphere (messy, but earnest and sweet-natured) and then Frankin called. He had had a practice with his swim team this morning, and was waiting to pick me up by South Station. Since it was just Harold and me, Frankin gave him a ride home, too.

All in all, it was an easy and pleasant experience, and I feel like i'm on the right side of history (by standing on the left side of politics, but what else is new?) I encourage you to check the Google spreadsheet and take down what yu can to help.

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