Former “desert warrior” Chris Clarke expressed a hasty thanks today as he jetted off to the Caribbean trailing large-denomination bills and a mysterious white powder. Thanks to the generosity of all those who donated, Chris was at last able to ditch the desert schtick and buy an island resort, which he is converting into what he referred to as “a safe haven for women struggling with a pole-dancing addiction.”
But seriously: For those late on the scene, Chris Clarke, blogger, writer, feminist, animal lover and environmental warrior of many years standing recently got his Jeep stolen for the second time. Thief #2 managed to total the vehicle during a high-speed chase, leaving our friend car-less. Chris is even getting billed for the towing charges.
As I said before, Chris is One of Us, and deserves support. Thanks to generous links from FreethoughtBlogs’ Big Dogs PZ Myers and Greta Christina, the community chipped in and eased the burden. Chris is still car-less, but is undeniably closer to being able to remedy the situation.
Pretty much all I did was call the situation to people’s attention, but Chris has promised to name his hopefully-soon replacement vehicle “Desert Fox” in my honor. —But hey, since he’s already going that far, I’m thinking some WWII bomber nose art might be a nice addition — possibly a majestic-looking head-and-shoulders portrait (the “majestic-looking” part might require a WEE bit of Photoshop).
If you missed previous posts on the event and might still want to donate, scroll to the bottom of Desert Warrior Seeks Millionaire. Sort Of. and click the PayPal button, or check out Chris’s REI Wish List.
[I've been informed the previous REI list won't let you ship direct to Chris. A better one is HERE.]
Consider this the expression of my own sincere appreciation to all who read here and elsewhere, and who were able to help by donating or spreading the word.
I’ll let Chris tell you the rest himself:
I am stunned and humbled. The sum of donations as of Saturday afternoon stands at a hair below $2,400. (For perspective for those reading this who are Pharyungulans, that is nearly half the cost of a Leica M7 rangefinder.)
Your generosity will make replacing my late lamented Jeep much more feasible. Those of you who chipped in will be hearing from me directly, and very soon. But I want to tell you what the next few weeks would have been like for me if it hadn’t been for you.
My fiancee and I decided shortly before the first Jeep theft that we were moving to the much friendlier and more affordable environs of Joshua Tree, CA. We will be able to live more cheaply there, and in more simpatico company. The first theft merely underscored our decision. I got the Jeep returned to me significantly the worse for wear, but still usable for hauling many of our belongings to the new place.
The second theft not only deprived us of a vehicle we could have used to move, but added a couple hundred dollars in towing fees to the list of things I had to cover. I’m working, and the amount of work I have is increasing, but covering a month’s rent in both old and new places and other moving costs were already going to make things extremely slim for a couple months. Not to mention replacing the couple hundred dollars in outdoor gear the first thieves got, which I needed for my work but which I was obviously going to have to do without for a while.
And then the Jeep got stolen for the second time, and totaled. Visual evidence: http://faultline.org/site/item/ouch/ As an empiricist I try not to take runs of spectacularly bad luck personally, but it doesn’t always work, and it didn’t this time. I basically saw no way out financially: it was the worst possible time to face hundreds of dollars in unanticipated expenses incurred through someone’s cruelty and negligence.
So that’s the situation I was in when Hank posted his very generous call to action. And now? Now I’m breathing. My shoulders are back halfway down away from my ears. We’ve got the UHaul truck covered and I’ll be able to shop for a new used truck once the move is over, and I am back to my usual sunny flavor of misanthropy rather than the bitter kind I was slipping into in the last week.
As some of us have seen in abundance lately, there are too many people on the internets who seem to take delight in trying to make other peoples’ lives harder and more unpleasant. Thank you for the very powerful reminder that people like that are still in the minority, and for making the next few weeks suck only as much as moving usually does. I hope you’ll come say hello at my blog, and I’ll be sure to put photos of the next truck up when it presents itself.
Your generosity utterly humbles me. Thank you again.
Hank again: I’d like to toss in my own final note — Thanks, y’all! You done good.
(Also, since this is the Internet, and forever, I’m once again underlining the point that you don’t need gods to be good.)