So, I’m new to this blog. But instead of hellos, let’s talk about news vs. volunteerism, eh?
This story has meaning. Promise. It starts with a tidbit about Commodore Wilbert Longfellow, a pertinent man with an awesome name.
Do not confuse him with that lame linguist of the 19th century. Longfellow was an ex-newsman who began teaching water safety classes in the early 1900s. Alarmed by the nation’s high drowning rate, he quit his reporting gig. He revolutionized water safety by teaching water skills in water instead of on land. Makes sense, right?
He also had some sweet swimming garb. I, for one, think we should bring back fashion trends of early Red Crossers.
Anyway, I relate to Mr. Longfellow because I, too, am an ex-wordsmith of the news variety. I was an overnight crime reporter in Lawrence, Kansas before taking on an AmeriCorps gig at the Red Cross. Fires, shootings, robberies, chickens in the road, more fires. It was as exciting as it was … well, sort of depressing.
Do you know what the worst feeling in the world is? Standing on the sidelines of major events, completely unable to influence the situation. The helpless sentiment gnaws and chomps at your disposition. But at the Red Cross, I’m teaching CPR, fire safety, first aid, even water safety a la the admirable Mr. Longfellow. It’s a great trade-off, and I don’t think Longfellow and I are the only ones to have made the shift.
Has anybody else switched from news sector to nonprofit? Pray tell.
Anyway, happy Friday the 13th. Don’t forget your first aid kits.