Doing Good Made Easy

I have this thing about “helping” other people, but it doesn’t always work out the way I imagine it will. For example, I read that Courtney Love had taken up Buddhist chanting. Great! I thought. I’ll ask her if she wants to do an interview, via Twitter. I began sending her encouraging bits from the Lotus Sutra and lots of nam-myoho-renge-kyos. She tweeted me back, incomprehensibly! I began to hope that maybe she should not only talk to me about her practice, but that I could introduce her to some better friends, get her meds and nutrition up to speed, then reconcile her and Frances, culminating in the greatest mother-daughter album ever released. In my defense, during this time I was still spending a lot of time at the hospital.

I can’t really explain my latest do-gooding project (it involves genetic doom and alcoholism and a Catholic food pantry), but when I was discussing it with my friend Ryan Turner at ChangeMatters, he passed along this potent idea: microvolunteering! And I pass it along to you, dear readers. This type of do-gooding is surely more reliable than my own complicated and tortured plots. Start the New Year right: lend a paw. The easy way.

Mary Valle lives in Baltimore and is the author of Cancer Doesn't Give a Shit About Your Stupid Attitude: Reflections on Cancer and Catholicism. She blogs on KtB as The Communicant. For more Mary, check out her blog or follow her on Twitter.