Monday, December 12, 2011

Rant: Don't Be A Selfish, Greedy Glutton

As the holiday season nears, food and wine blogs are ramping up to spread holiday cheer. You will read epic tales of sumptuous feasts, accompanied by expensive and rare bottles of wine. You will read plenty of holiday recipes, describing how to prepare some of the most decadent dishes. You will read of pricey gifts received, from costly electronics to tropical vacations. Colorful photos will display all of these hedonistic pleasures in their alluring glory.

But I want to see something more, something meaningful.

I don't want to be regaled by selfish, greedy gluttons. Instead, I want to hear about charitable efforts to help those less fortunate. This should be a time of generosity and charity, of giving to others rather than gorging only ourselves. Though many love the holiday season, it can be a very sad time for those with little or nothing. Every community has some people who find it difficult merely to pay for basic essentials. Share your largess with others, helping those who truly need it.

Even though these are tough economic times for many of us, we all probably can help out others, even if only in little ways. If you cannot spare money, then donate your time or make something to give to others, maybe bake a pie, cookies or casserole. Donate old clothes or other durable items which you no longer use. There are many different ways to help out others besides just monetary donations.

During this season, there are numerous restaurants, chefs, stores and others which are holding special charitable events. Promote those events on your blogs, spreading the word far and wide. Attend those events, encouraging others to do the same. Give to your favorite charities, whatever they might be. Just don't revel in selfish, greedy gluttony, ignoring the plight of others.

This applies to our readers as well, and I encourage all of you to be charitable as well, in whatever way that you can. Be creative in your efforts, even if your own finances are tight. That would be the best gift I could receive from my readers, the knowledge that you have all helped out those less fortunate.

I will do my own part to help the less fortunate, to share what I possess. Year round, I promote numerous food and wine-related charitable events and probably will promote even more this season. I will give to several charities as well, even if I only can give small amounts, to those which are personally close to my heart. I will try to help in a number of different ways and I strongly encourage all of my fellow bloggers to do the same this season.

Let us share with all during this joyous holiday season.


Jason Phelps said...

Thanks for bringing this up Richard. Margot and I feel the same way and have taken to creating our own tradition in this regard. Both this year and last we have taken the $$ we would have spent on presents for us and others and donated it to the NH Food Bank. We have plenty of everything and being able to add something to the season for others who don't makes me feel better than anything else I could do with the money.

We also don't have any plans for over the top feasts and crazy expensive bottles of wine. We will be enjoying holidays meals with friends and family, but we will make all of it and our drinks will come from what we already have on hand, homemade or otherwise.

Unabashedly spending your dough to go big is so out of fashion that those people who still do it are feeding some inner desire of their own to show off. They can make that choice, but they can't control the message others taken from their actions.

Happy Holidays!


Todd - VT Wine Media said...

Hear! Hear!
None of us who have so much to enjoy, should need visitations from three spirits to remind us of those less fortunate. Richard's gentler reminder is an extrememly important one. Keep in mind that volunteer food shelves/pantries and soup kitchens tend to be stocked well at this time of the year. Late winter and spring, things get much tougher, so consider setting up a regular monthly or quarterly donation to the organization of your choice.
Share and be thankful.

Nubian said...

I try and live Christmas every day of the year. I cannot give financially, but I do give of my time.

Thanks for reminding us all.

Marie Payton said...

I have been hugely inspired by my #winechat co-host Dave Reynolds, who for the third year in a row has moved into a trailer in a parking lot in Canada (brrr) to raise money and gather food for the homeless.

This year folks were so generous that he was able to fill 2 trailer trucks of food for his community and moved onto a third truck for a neighboring community.

Dave's efforts really show what a difference one person can make when they put their whole heart and soul behind something they believe in.

Richard Auffrey said...

Thanks for all your great comments and for echoing my sentiments. The world needs more people like all of you. Happy holidays.