Imagine crawling into a warm bed, feeling the safety of the familiar, the security of being surrounded by the things you love, then waking up suddenly around 3 a.m. to a trickling sound. At first, you might write it off as a leaky faucet. But, even in your half-asleep state, you know the sound’s not quite right. You jump up, utter a shriek as your bare feet hit water, run as fast as you can through the slosh into the living room, and discover the storm outside has found a way in – a tree fell on the roof, a branch crashed through the window, a car broke down the front door – and water, wind, and debris are rapidly destroying everything you’ve worked for. You immediately worry about your kids, your spouse, your pets, your neighbors, but …what do you do when you realize there’s nothing you can do?
Not every natural disaster hits without warning. The aftermath, though, regardless of whether or not we’ve prepared for the worst, is almost always the same: Confusion, heartbreak, fear, helplessness, and an overwhelming sense of loss. The first few days are the hardest, taking inventory, taking it all in. When you’ve lost everything, you don’t know where to start. When you have no insurance, you don’t know HOW to start. There are local and federal aid programs out there, but many require long application processes and most aren’t immediately or easily accessible. It takes time to get help, get back on your feet, and rebuild. In those first days, all you really have is YOU – your resources, your know-how, and the network of family, neighbors, and friends the disaster allows you to reach out to. Wouldn’t it be a comfort to know there was someone within reach at that critical time?
I don’t give money to charity. Not often, anyway. For one thing, it’s impossible to know my money will go where it’s needed. I’d rather DO something, like donate hair for an oil spill, drop canned goods in the box at Thanksgiving, visit the French Quarter and spend more money than I should on Bourbon Street, or write a blog post heralding the efforts of groups like The Kid Rock Life Line. After reading a Facebook friend’s status that described how a single mom with two boys had lost their home and possessions in Hurricane Irene, Sonia Woolf and a few others launched a full assault. Within three days, The Kid Rock Life Line had more than 30 members, they’d raised nearly $200, and care packages were on their way to the single mom and her boys. Within a week, another Irene survivor was identified and added to the care package list, membership grew to over 60, and it became apparent there was more than simple Facebook group chatter going on.
Most of these people have never met in person. Some have known each other for years. All have one thing in common: an adoration for Kid Rock. Because of their dedication to both the artist and each other, folks who’d lost everything overnight found immediate moral support and encouragement, as well as food, toiletries, blankets, clothes, and toys, days before any other aid organization had a chance. I know all this because I was there. I saw the initial status post from the single mom of two. I noticed Sonia’s post and joined the group the first day, shortly after my neighbor became an Admin. It has been a pleasure and an honor to play even the smallest part of this. I’m in awe of their generosity.
To help them raise funds for the next go-round(s), I’m offering signed copies of CKR for $20. You’re welcome to skip over to Amazon right now and pick up a copy for $10.98, plus shipping and whatnot, if you like. I’ll make $.91 that way and The Kid Rock Life Line won’t make a thing. OR (if you wanna DO something) you can send your shipping address in an email to firstname.lastname@example.org, say you want a signed copy to benefit KRLL (make sure you say who to sign it to), and I’ll send the group ten bucks. I’ll still make almost $.91, but you’ll have a copy of CHASING KID ROCK signed by yours truly, and a victim of the next hurricane or flash flood or earthquake or whatever the hell Mother Nature throws at us will be able to put enough gas in the tank to get to work before they lose their job or pick up enough ice to keep the contents of their refrigerator safe in the cooler for another day or two. Every little bit makes a difference. I hope you’ll consider pitching in. Any way you can.