This morning I went to the Mayor's office and I requested an appointment. The kind gentleman who forcefully told me to go away and someone would read my letter some day was really a sign of things to come. I then wandered off to my therapist's office for that appointment. When I explained to her what I was doing her eyes bugged and she actually said, "Give the money to me!" It was hilarious. In the end she said she understood why I felt compelled the way I do and if it really isn't a financial problem... she totally supports me. That was nice. She almost choked on her drink when I explained Noah's salary and why I'm not worried about $20,000. It is very uncomfortable for people when I talk about money. It's a hard thing on pretty much everyone.
I wandered back over towards the encampment. I spent a while sitting around and feeling awkward. I'm good at that. Eventually I found the morning meeting. When I asked if I could speak the facilitator first tried to tell me no but I interrupted and blurted, "I want to donate $20,000." He blinked hard and added my name to the list. He had me go last. I did my little blurt thing, not the letter. I was too chicken shit. Gah. But I blurted something that was less than eloquent and I was somewhat surprised to have people muttering about how I should go buy some blankets. I responded that I've already donated multiple tents, sleeping bags, blankets, air mattresses, several food drops, and other items. No really. I'm giving. She looked down and kept muttering. Ok.
I had an earnest conversation with a few gentlemen who gave me a little bit of their perspective and that was interesting. The big sticking point seemed to be finding someone on the finance committee to talk to. I wandered around a bit. I met JP Massar, who decided to mention me on dailykos, thanks. Another gentleman thanked me for being so generous. It was really sweet. Other than that... folks didn't talk to me. I wandered around. I read. I typed a bit. I watched the large group of Muslims praying. After a while one of their members started uhm, it sounded like preaching. Am I allowed to use that word for Islam? I don't mean to be an asshole. Anyway. That was nice. I liked what he was saying.
After a bit I went and sat in the Tully's and managed to hook up with a few more people who had heard of someone on the finance committee. I talked to a woman on the phone even! It was exciting. I did not manage to run into her later. I wussed out on being on site for a bit and had to run away. I felt lame, but I just had to get my anxiety under wraps. I was shaking and hurting. I came back in time for the General Assembly.
I asked around about speaking. When I finally figured out who the facilitator was and asked him if I could speak he told me that was a bad idea. It would create a shit storm of controversy. He's not wrong. I did manage to give one check away! I felt so proud of myself. One man used his rent money to cover the buses used in the General Strike. I didn't think he should have to carry that load. He has enough of a burden. The joy on his face was the highlight of my day. That was a real thing to do. It's not what I mostly want to do with the money, but that's ok.
I haven't heard back from anyone connected to the city. I'm less than shocked. I think that instead I am going to ask Occupy Oakland to think of me as a fairy godmother. I would like to know what their needs are and I will decide what I want to fund. It's my decision. This is my money. It probably is going to piss off some people and that's ok. I will be giving a high priority to any project that is designed to increase the positive relationship with the city of Oakland. I think the city is bearing an unduly high cost for this protest. That's my opinion and I don't care if anyone else agrees with me.
By the end of the night I finally met a few people and exchanged contact information. I hope they will contact me tomorrow because I am a lazy bastard. But I'd really like to give them some money.