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Readers Blog: Dobie Maxwell's 'Dented Can' Diary

Just Trying To Help

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Saturday May 5th, 2012 – Waukegan, IL/Milwaukee, WI

   No matter how disappointed I ever get or how short I feel I fall of whatever outrageously out of realistic reach expectations I may set for myself, I always make it a high priority to offer my help and support to charitable causes whenever I can. If I can ever help someone in need, I’ll be there.

   Today I happened to have two separate commitments I volunteered for, but both were easy and I’m glad I said yes. I’m not sure if I helped all that much, but at least I was able to get some good energy going and hopefully it will lead to other situations in the future. This is what life is about.

   It is to me anyway. The older I get, the more I realize the only thing that really matters is what a person can give to others and contribute to the collective. I always refer back to Harry Chapin’s example of using whatever celebrity clout he may have had to raise money and awareness for his collection of worthy causes – mostly world hunger. He had passion and he gave from his heart.

   I’d love to be remembered the same way, whether I ever get to be a celebrity or not. This is not about anything other than showing human kindness, and there can never be enough of that in my opinion. We all slide down the cosmic wormhole eventually, and as for me I’m going to do what I can to bring satisfied smiles to as many faces along the way as I can. That will keep me busy.

   A few months ago I attended a networking breakfast in Gurnee, IL and met a representative of Catholic Charities. I’m not Catholic, but I am charitable and she said they have a need for people to volunteer for various situations ranging from child care to senior events. She said I could sign up and they’d notify me whenever they had openings, and I could show up when I was available.

   That sounded painless, so I did. Today I had my first assignment, which was helping out in the child care department at their office in Waukegan, IL. They needed volunteers to entertain some kids as their parents attended some sort of meeting that I never did find out what it was exactly.

   All I had to do was hang out with the kids for about an hour and color or watch a movie or play a game. How hard is that? They needed someone from 9am to noon, and the time zipped by. I’ve always loved to hang out with kids, as they’re a great audience. I love the sound of their laughter.

   There were several other volunteers there too, and I really didn’t have all that much to do. All I basically did was sit around and make sure nobody ran with scissors or anything like that and the kids were great. They ranged in age from about 2 to 9, and it was an easy gig. I’m glad I did this.

   Tonight I was the auctioneer for a fundraising event for the Downtown Montessori Academy in Milwaukee. I have a natural flair for being an auctioneer since I talk fast anyway, and know how to think on my feet. Plus, I’ve been to a lot of car auctions. All I did was do what I’ve seen done.

   Ian Spanic asked me to do this months ago, and he and everyone else couldn’t have treated me any nicer. This was a fun event, and the people involved all had passion for the cause. It was for their children, and about giving them a quality education. I was delighted to be asked, and it was totally worth my time. I hope I was able to help both causes today, and I’d gladly show up again.

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