Occupy Wall Street Needs Your Peanut Butter
I stopped by Zuccotti Park this afternoon to drop off some drop off some clothes and other supplies, and asked what the folks down there were short on. Here are some needful things you can bring by to show your support (here or in your town’s Occupy site):
- peanut butter (the vegetarians need protein)
- any pre-made dish with beans (same reason)
- sliced bread (unsliced loaves are a pain as they have to be cut)
- utensils/paper cups and plates
- dog food (canine occupiers have to eat, too)
Other needed support (you can put your contact info on a list for these):
- places to take a shower
- places to sleep when it gets too cold
- money/assistance with laundry (trucks are helpful)
Tonight’s General Assembly was largely dedicated to a crisis created by this last item: laundry. Two days ago it rained in NYC, creating a Mount Everest of damp laundry that needed to be done right away. The protesters met this challenge by hiring a truck and driver (union!) at a cost of several hundred dollars and took donations for the mind-blowing number of quarters required for this Herculean task. If you have a truck and can offer it for the day to haul laundry, you will earn a sea of smiles and wiggling fingers.
Listening to how issues are resolved by polite questions and consensus - and browsing neatly organized stations dedicated to food, clean-up, and donated clothes - shines a light on just how well organized the protesters are in their living arrangements. And how dishonest it is to paint them as uncivilized slackers.
The park tonight was clean, colorful, and full of life. Part carnival, part class room, and part commune, the Zuccotti Park encampment shows no signs of energy dissipating. Camaraderie is strong. If anything, the protesters seem more determined than ever to prove their staying power. “We don’t want sound bytes,” said one occupier. “We want to build something that will last.”
All are welcome to come lend a hand. And don't forget the peanut butter.