Seen & Heard
Blue Avocado Readers Test It
Worth Reading & Why
Take a 3 Minute Vacation Right Now
April 1, 2014 . . . Blue Avocado is in secret merger talks with the Red Cross, Greenpeace,Yellow Ribon Fund, Purple Heart Foundation, American Black Film Festival, and Brown University. "At last, there will be a place where wounded veterans can make films about college students eating guacamole in disaster areas," said a spokesman.
"You can fool some of the people all of the time," said circusman P.T. Barnum famously, "but you can only fool all of the people on April Fool's Day." Here are the winning entries in our contest for stories "impacting" the nonprofit sector today. -- Susan Sanow and Jan Masaoka
IRS Announces Recall of Section 501(c)(3)
From Paul Sussman, Tenderloin Neighborhood Development Corporation, San Francisco
The Internal Revenue Service announced today the recall of Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code due to "unwieldy and inconsistent requirements" that can cause "extreme inconvenience, high operating costs, and in rare cases, . . .
If you're on a conference call and playing solitaire or answering email, try playing our Nonprofit Conference Call Bingo instead . . . you'll listen more carefully!
Instructions: print this out and place an X in each square when you hear one of the typical conference call annoyances or cliche's. Get five in a row -- in any direction -- and you win!
Guaranteed, you'll end up talking to yourself as you read the 22 Maps That Show How Americans Speak English Totally Differently From Each Other. Here's a look at word choice, pronunciations and accents from across the United States. (tip: look for the GO RIGHT arrow in the upper-ish right to get to the next map)
Would you say, "So, you guys, I am putting on my sneakers, grabbing a submarine, hopping on the highway and heading to the city," or would you say "So y'all, I am putting on my tennis shoes, grabbing a hoagie, hopping on the freeway and heading to the city" and mean the same thing.
We may all be speaking American English, but we're worlds apart. Not to mention those English-speaking New Zealanders. And if only we could better understand the language differences between grantmakers and grantseekers!
Some days it feels like the nonprofit sector emits a constant drumbeat of dismaying statistics about how awful the world is. And then, because we are always told we have to be positive, we add in a little story about how one or two people are overcoming the odds. Unintentionally, this juxtaposition creates an impression of the nonprofit sector where we are helping five people do better while 87% of their population is in terrible shape.
So here's a little, temporary antidote: some facts that will make you happy.
At Blue Avocado, it's April 1 and we're thinking about changing our name: help us decide! One possibility is the Blue Avocado Foundation, which would allow us to receive the sucking-up of hundreds of nonprofits every day. We would declare ourselves in strategic planning mode for three years, during which we could debate "outcome" vs. "impact," and "marginalized" vs. "disadvantaged." (As a regular nonprofit, we could never have considered suspending operations for long periods of time in order to plan.)
Alternatively, we're considering Church of the Blue Avocado, which would mean we can skip Form 990, report nothing to anyone about anything, and still keep our tax-exempt status. And design some gorgeous choir robes, too. Whaddya think, readers?
There's other great news in April for nonprofits. Read on. --Jan Masaoka
Obama Administration Hires Senior Official Not from the Gates Foundation
Submitted by Michael Edwards
In a move that sent shock waves . . .
It's not too often we at Blue Avocado take a strong stand on who should win a Best Film Oscar, but we are rooting for for an Academy Award 2013 Best Animated Film (Short) nominee. For your consideration: "Fresh Guacamole."
This one minute 45 seconds has to be the tastiest film ever. Watch it twice for a full 3-minute vacation.