Kevin Ferguson hoists Off-Ramp's Golden Mike (John Rabe)
Sitting on your hands is never a good idea.
- If you're wearing corduroy pants, sitting on your hands leaves unsightly lines on your hands.
- If you're sitting on your hands, you can't raise the Golden Mike in victory, as Off-Ramp producer Kevin Ferguson did when Off-Ramp took the prize for best local public affairs show.
- If you sit on your hands, you can't vote for Mayor or President.
- If you sit on your hands, someone has to feed you; and
- If you sit on your hands, it's much harder to get noticed if Warren Buffett shows up and asks, "Who wants a million dollars in cash?"
But most of all, if you sit on your hands, you miss out on the opportunity to participate in our Spring Membership Drive, which is happening for just the next few days.
Why didn't I just say, "If you sit on your hands, you can't give during the fundraiser?" Because it's more than giving money. It's about not sitting on your hands, not sitting on the sidelines, not letting someone else do what you should do, not being a passive member of your community.
Also, the amount of money you give isn't important. What's important is that you give.
I'll let you in on some behind-the-scenes fundraising stuff. You may have noticed that a few years ago, we used to have dollar goals for each hour of our fundraisers. We'd say, for example:
"We need to raise $5,000 in this hour. But it doesn't matter how much you give..."
Well, that didn't make any sense at all. So, we shifted paradigms.
Instead of talking about how much money we needed to raise, we started setting member goals.
"We need to hear from 50 of you in the next hour to stay on track! New, renewing, prodigal members ... online, phone line ... And how much you give doesn't matter. Just become a member right now."
And you know what?
We found that when people call or click and give whatever amount is right for them, they're generous, and the dollar goal takes care of itself: the Rita Wilsons & Tom Hanks of the world tend to give tens of thousands of dollars, the schoolteachers and fire fighters give hundreds, the students and seniors give $89, and kids on allowances give a few bucks.
But none of them sit on their hands. And you shouldn't either. Please become a member right now, giving what you can, and help keep Off-Ramp strong.
-- Team Off-Ramp (host John Rabe, producer Kevin Ferguson, and interns Mukta Mohan & Robert Garrova)
(Photo: Compton "Kitarettes" at 22nd annual Watts-Willowbrook Parade, 1986. Credit: James Ruebsamen/LAPL/Herald-Examiner Collection.)