How about we start Friday off with a little good news for a change? See if you can keep from smiling after reading this:
"Ou[r] guests," Gibson said, "are people on the street, people usually look through them. We all see people walk by them. That’s why we call them guests — not clients because they are special. Mrs. Obama’s visit tells our guests they are not forgotten. That President Obama and Mrs. Obama care about their neighborhood and their neighbors who a lot of people don’t care about."
"It’s tough being on the street. This says you are human," Gibson said. "They live on the street. There is danger at every turn. To have Mrs. Obama here says for a minute, we are all together. It will give people hope. They need hope. A lot are struggling with some really serious issues. For some of them, hope is what they cling to."
At 12:21 p.m., the rolling metal door to the service line rolled up. Behind the counter stood Mrs. Obama, in a guava pink sweater and plastic serving gloves, with serving spoon in hand.
According to Paul West of the Baltimore Sun, who was yesterday’s pool reporter for the event:
The First Lady’s office arranged a White House-wide food drive that yielded almost eight cases of fresh fruit, delivered Wednesday evening, which should be enough to provide fruit for almost two weeks of meals, according to executive director Scott Schenkelberg, who introduced Mrs. Obama.
At a time when that sort of example is desperately needed all across the country — much like Eleanor Roosevelt did in the 1930s — good for her.
Food banks across the country are experiencing unprecedented demand. A lot of them are struggling to keep pace with the swiftly increasing requests for help, and are barely keeping donations and volunteer numbers above the desperate pace of need.
And the swingset for the girls out back? Love it. Given how much time our five-year-old likes to spend at the park? As in pretty much any time she can drag me out the door? If their girls are the same, it was a really good move. And I bet the Secret Service was applauding, too.
Putting family and community service front and center? Those are priorities I can cheer.
PS — If you are thinking about organizing a food drive in your community, work with your local food bank and take a page from these folks on how to get good donations.