I spent several days in Memphis.
My current employer decided to send a contingency from the center of the state west to work on a project. So I spent three nights in the Crowne Plaze in downtown Memphis. By the way, it was OK, but I don’t recommend you stay there. It’s never a good sign when you have to pay to park in a locked lot so they can have a guard drive around it all night.
But this is not a hotel review post.
Hanging out in Memphis reminded me of my days living in New Orleans. It’s a different way of life there. The people are more laid-back. No one’s in a hurry. That’s nice when you’re on the interstate and it’s not bumper-to-bumper traffic. It’s not nice when you wait 10 minutes to get a cup of ice water at a McDonald’s… AFTER you place your order.
The experience got me doing some existential thinking.
I am tired. My body is tired, and so is my spirit. This “normal people” way of life is cancerous, and having to deal with stupid people who think they know what they’re doing makes me tired.
So…. what to do?
And that is where I’m at. I’m considering starting a non-profit. Not sure doing what yet. But I know my calling is in helping others, and a non-profit that uses my talents to help others would be win-win.
If I get a good enough idea, I could try a kickstarter to get me off the ground then play the grant-writing game to keep me going.
Some ideas I’m kicking around are:
On-site counseling for persons living in poverty-stricken areas to help address the high rates of stress, trauma and other issues related to living in areas where this is high crime and few opportunities. The problem is that while definitely needed, I don’t know how I’d convince local governments to invest in the service. They prefer to let churches do it for free.
A lobbying group kinda like AARP but for poor people. The idea would be to help the poor maneuver the political system to help them be heard. Wouldn’t it be awesome to start Homeless Lobby Day and get that demographic ready to meet with and lobby their legislators the same way realtors do? I think so.
Or how about a think tank designed to call out how ridiculous some rules are that are supposed to help certain groups but actually make those programs difficult for normal people to maneuver and ripe for abuse by bad actors? You know, like the non-profit status that anybody can get with a lawyer and a few hundred bucks?
A lot of pondering and planning. A lot of selling of such an idea. But hey, what have a got to lose?
So, what do you think? Can you think of a non-profit you’d like to see started?