It's odd, sometimes, to wonder about my investments in the Heifer Project or the Grameen Foundation and wonder who they've actually helped, other than the glossy picture stories that they put in their brochures. Oddly enough, it seems too far removed, especially the multiplicative nature of the Grameen Foundation. What did my giving grow into? It's been interesting wondering about the girl that got the sweater I made her when I was in college, or the half a dozen ring shawls I'd given away when I made them and my hands were still good, or the people I taught lace shawls, or the research organization that took my research results nearly two decades ago, or the folks that I built core products for only a decade ago... where are they? Did my work mean something to them?
Odd thoughts, wisps of an idea, having something to do with faith/hope/determination having some connection to survival. That a being with hope will find a way where a being with only despair won't even look and, therefore, fall, fail, or die; therefore, perhaps, the evolution of spirituality, religions, belief systems, illogical and unscientific paths of emotion and experience, and the need to believe in anecdotal experience rather than the accumulation of a statistically meaningful body of data.
All of which is mixed in with all kinds of interesting emotional stuff from watching the Raiders get stomped all over by the Buc defense. I've always hated the Raiders, no matter their form, and it's interesting to see that even when it's a completely new team with some really respectable and cool people (I mean, hey, it's Jerry RICE for gosh sake in the silver and black!), I still am glad when they lose.