Today's politiquette tip: don't tell a person using a wheelchair, "I don't think of you as someone in a wheelchair!" Or more commonly: "I don't think of you as a minority!" said to people of color. The implication, of course, is that the listener has managed to transcend being from a group of less-thans, and the speaker is, of course, congratulating himself or herself.
Exception to this rule: lawyers seem to love to be told, "You don't act like a lawyer!"
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, . . .
Do nonprofits inspire people? or do people inspire nonprofits?
If you need two minutes of inspiration, enjoy this video that includes such classics such as "A day may come when the courage of men fails, but it is not this day!" and "Clap! Clap! Don't let Tink die!"
With clips from Rocky, Pulp Fiction, and The Mighty Ducks, we think you'll enjoy --and maybe even be uplifted by -- the video. And as Brad Pitts says in Troy, "We are avocados!" I mean, "We are lions!"
Watch last week's moon landing from the camera of Yutu -- Jade Rabbit, the Chinese moon rover -- and reflect on your life and the future of human civilization. And then go back to reading your email.
"The moon . . . never leaves. Every day it’s a different version of itself. Sometimes weak and wan, sometimes strong and full of light. The moon understands what it means to be human. Uncertain. Alone. Cratered by imperfections.”
― Tahereh Mafi, Shatter Me
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.
Sure, timing is everything! Feeling stressed and wondering what you've done the last few hours? Take a couple of minutes and enjoy these fun photos where the photographer happened to catch exactly the right moment on film. Spend the next three minutes looking at those that got it just right. You could use a smile and a moment of amazement.
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
Has anyone else seen an avocado in an Oscar nominated film this year?
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.