Blog Break Cat Photo

I’m going into writer hibernation and taking a blog break through October 31, while I finish my next book, “Coming Out Atheist: How To Do It, How to Help Each Other, and Why.”

In the meantime, here is a cat photo. I’ve pre-scheduled at least one cat photo for every day of my break, so you won’t be lonely.

Talisker

Talisker!

Todd Stiefel Takes a Freethought Blogs/ Skepchick Light the Night Dare!

Leukemia & Lymphoma Society Light the Night Walk logoSo Freethought Blogs has gotten in on the Foundation Beyond Belief/ Leukemia & Lymphoma Foundation Light the Night Walk thing, and has started a virtual team! Even small donations help — it really does add up.

Now Todd Stiefel — the Foundation Beyond Belief Light the Night International Team Captain, the guy who came up with the whole “Foundation Beyond Belief and the atheist community supporting the Light the Night Walk in a big way” idea in the first place, and whose Stiefel Freethought Foundation is doing matching funds for a big-ass chunk of it — is jumping onto the “silly dares and forfeits” campaign. For those just joining us: I’ve set up a whole sequence of forfeits and dares if the Freethought Blogs team reaches assorted fundraising goals, and PZ Myers, Ed Brayton, and Avicenna are all offering themselves up as sacrificial lambs as well. And fellow blogging network Skepchick is offering a bunch of cool dares and offers for their own Light the Night Walk virtual team as well. (Rivalry! Rivalry! We can beat those Skepchicks! Rah! Rah! Go team!)

todd stiefelAnd now, Todd Stiefel has promised that if either the Freethought Blogs team or the Skepchick team raises $20,000, he’ll get a buzz-mohawk. (His hair isn’t long enough for a big one). And whichever team gets to the goal first will get to pick the color of his mohawk!

We have to make this happen, people.

So sign up for the team, and make a donation! Every penny counts. Go, team, go! Let’s make use of human beings’ evolutionary tendency towards tribalism and group loyalty — and our tendency to treat pointless sacrifices as both a social bonding mechanism and proof of serious commitment — and turn it towards good!

Skepchick Forms “Light the Night Walk” Online Team — The Race Is On!

Leukemia & Lymphoma Society Light the Night Walk logoSo Freethought Blogs has gotten onto the Foundation Beyond Belief/ Leukemia & Lymphoma Foundation Light the Night bandwagon, and has started a virtual team! Even small donations help — it really does add up.

But I am compelled to inform you that Skepchick, the rival blogging network who keeps impersonating our pep squad and stealing our mascot, has entered the fray, and has started up a virtual team of their own.

THIS.

WILL.

NOT.

STAND.

We can’t let those hussies beat us, can we? Oh, sure, we got a few days’ head start. But I’m sure they will use their feminine wiles to sucker you into supporting their side. (Which, okay, fine, is all the same side. Raising money to fight cancer. Still. Rrrrrr!) And they’re offering up their own dares and whatnots for their fundraising efforts — including a bunch of artistic and creative offers, such as custom superhero drawings and custom cocktails. Totally unfair, using their unique talents like that!

So if at the end of the fundraiser, Freethought Blogs has raised more money than Skepchicks, the Skepchicks team will… uh, do something. Probably. We haven’t figured out that part yet. And if, Loki forbid, Skepchicks ends up raising more than Freethought Blogs, the Freethought Blogs team will… uh, do something else. We’ll fill you in as soon as we come up with something.

In the meantime — sign up for the team, and make a donation! Every penny counts. Go, team, go! Let’s make use of human beings’ evolutionary tendency towards tribalism and group loyalty — and our tendency to get excited out of all proportion over essentially random competition — and turn it towards good!

Blog Break Cat Photo

I’m going into writer hibernation and taking a blog break through October 31, while I finish my next book, “Coming Out Atheist: How To Do It, How to Help Each Other, and Why.”

In the meantime, here is a cat photo. I’ve pre-scheduled at least one cat photo for every day of my break, so you won’t be lonely.

Tabbies!

Tabbies!

Blog Break Cat Photo

I’m going into writer hibernation and taking a blog break through October 31, while I finish my next book, “Coming Out Atheist: How To Do It, How to Help Each Other, and Why.”

In the meantime, here is a cat photo. I’ve pre-scheduled at least one cat photo for every day of my break, so you won’t be lonely.

Comet

Comet!

Blog Break Cat Photo

I’m going into writer hibernation and taking a blog break through October 31, while I finish my next book, “Coming Out Atheist: How To Do It, How to Help Each Other, and Why.”

In the meantime, here is a cat photo. I’ve pre-scheduled at least one cat photo for every day of my break, so you won’t be lonely.

Talisker

Talisker!

My Light the Night Walk Forfeits and Dares

Leukemia & Lymphoma Society Light the Night Walk logoSo Freethought Blogs has gotten onto the Foundation Beyond Belief/ Leukemia & Lymphoma Foundation Light the Night bandwagon, and has started a virtual team! Even small donations help — it really does add up. As of this writing, we’ve already raised over $4000!

For each $1000 we raise, I’ve promised to do a different forfeit or dare, based on suggestions made by my readers. Suggestions have been trickling in… but donations have been coming in too fast to keep up. As of this writing, we’ve raised over $4,000! Which is awesome! And here’s what I’ll be doing for all y’all’s entertainment.

For raising $1000, I will dye all my hair purple and green, for Skepticon.

For raising $2000, I will go to church. (I won’t pray — that would be dishonest — but I’ll attend, and I’ll even be polite.) It’ll have to wait until after the book is finished, though: I’m not devoting an entire Sunday of book-writing time to this particular waste of time.

For raising $3000, I will wear a Tea Party hat and make a ridiculous speech about health care.

For raising $4000, I will get a manicure in bubble-gum pink. (This one was suggested by Ingrid. I don’t think that counts as honoring me and treasuring me…)

As of this writing, all of these goals have been reached, and I am now committed to these dares and forfeits. But I think I should commit now to my future dares and forfeits, so I can’t cheat and make them be something like “hang out in a cafe surfing the Internet” or “watch What Not to Wear while petting cats.” Some of these have been made specifically for me; some of them I’m swiping from suggestions made to my Light the Night teammates.

So here are the promises I am making for our next set of milestones:

If our team raises, $5000, I will dress as a nun and sing the Leslie Gore song, “You Don’t Own Me” to a crucifix. (Finding the nun outfit will be the biggest challenge, I think.)

If our team raises $6000, I will eat entirely vegetarian for a month. (I’m largely vegetarian-ish now, but I make exceptions. For a month, I won’t.)

If our team raises $7000, I will eat entirely vegan for a week.

If our team raises $8000, I will read, and review, “Fifty Shades of Grey.” Sigh. Again, though – this will have to wait until my book is finished.

If we raise $9000, I will eat bugs.

And if we reach our team’s fundraising goal of $10,000…

I will eat broccoli.

Seriously.

What’s more: If you participate in the Light the Night Walk by just donating some money to our team and then walking up and down in your living room as part of a “do it yourself” walkathon — and you videotape it and put it on the Internet — I will personally donate $50 to the FTB Light the Night team. $50 per video, capping out at $500. (I’ll also post links to the videos on my blog.)

foundation beyond belief logoAnd if the entire Foundation Beyond Belief team reaches its goal of raising $500,000 in 2013, I will walk across the entire city of San Francisco, in the wildest outfit I can come up with. (With sensible shoes, though — I’m not stupid.) Yes, I’ll be doing my very own personal Bay to Breakers, with whatever friends and family I can sucker into joining me.

I won’t be the only one doing assorted forfeits and dares if we reach various fundraising milestones, btw. PZ Myers, Ed Brayton, and Avicenna are all offering themselves up as sacrificial lambs as well.

In addition to (or instead of) being part of our virtual team, you can actually take part in the Light the Night walk in your own city: as part of a Foundation Beyond Belief team, or as part of some other team, or just on your own. You don’t have to be part of an official team to be part of the walk — you can just register as an individual, either online or at the event.

So sign up! Be an official part of the Freethought Blogs Light the Night team! Get me, PZ, Ed, and Avicenna to do awesome, embarrassing, painful, or hilarious things against cancer! Let’s make use of human beings’ evolutionary tendency towards tribalism and group loyalty, and turn it towards good! Go, team, go!

Blog Break Cat Photo

I’m going into writer hibernation and taking a blog break through October 31, while I finish my next book, “Coming Out Atheist: How To Do It, How to Help Each Other, and Why.”

In the meantime, here is a cat photo. I’ve pre-scheduled at least one cat photo for every day of my break, so you won’t be lonely.

Snuggly tabbies

Snuggly tabbies!

Freethought Blogs Light the Night Team — Forfeits and Dares from PZ Myers, Ed Brayton, and Avicenna!

Leukemia & Lymphoma Society Light the Night Walk logoSo Freethought Blogs has gotten onto the Foundation Beyond Belief/ Leukemia & Lymphoma Foundation Light the Night bandwagon, and has started a virtual team! Even small donations help — it really does add up.

And I won’t be the only one doing assorted forfeits and dares if we reach various fundraising milestones. PZ Myers, Ed Brayton, and Avicenna are all offering themselves up as sacrificial lambs as well.

For my own bad self: What with being the Foundation Beyond Belief International Team’s Honored Hero for 2013, it seems right that I should take at least a good amount of the “dares and forfeits” bullet. So if the Freethought Blogs team raises $1,000, I will dye all my hair purple and green for Skepticon. Not the genteel little green and purple streaks I have now. If we raise $1,000, I will hand myself over to my hairdresser, tell her “purple and green,” and let her dye every hair on my head. (As of this writing, we’re just $30 away from that goal!)

And for every $1,000 that the Freethought Blogs team raises over that, I will do some other dare or forfeit… chosen from a list of suggestions made by you all, here in the comments. (If I don’t get suggestions, I’ll come up with dares and forfeits myself… but it’s going to be things like “Play with my cats” or “Eat a delicious donut,” so if you want something more entertaining than that, start chiming in with suggestions.)

This virtual team thing basically means you can participate by just clicking a few clicks and donating some money. And then you can walk up and down in your living room for a couple of miles, if you’re feeling left out of the whole walkathon thing. In fact… if you do take a walk up and down your living room as part of a “do it yourself” walkathon, and you videotape it and put it on the Internet, I will personally donate $50 to the FTB Light the Night team. $50 per video, capping out at $500. (I’ll also post links to the videos on my blog.) Or else you can actually take part in the Light the Night walk in your own city: as part of a Foundation Beyond Belief team, or as part of some other team, or just on your own. You don’t have to be part of an official team to be part of the walk — you can just register as an individual, either online or at the event.

foundation beyond belief logoAnd if the entire Foundation Beyond Belief team reaches its goal of raising $500,000 in 2013, I will walk across the entire city of San Francisco, in the wildest outfit I can come up with. (With sensible shoes, though — I’m not stupid.) Yes, I’ll be doing my very own personal Bay to Breakers, with whatever friends and family I can sucker into joining me.

That’s not an outrageous goal, by the way. In 2012, the Foundation Beyond Belief raised $430,000 for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Foundation… and that was the very first year they participated in this thing. It was the largest amount ever raised by a first year non-corporate team and the 4th largest amount raised by any team in the nation in 2012, including corporate teams. So that’s pretty cool. And $500,000 is totally do-able.

So sign up! Be an official part of the Freethought Blogs Light the Night team! Get me, PZ, Ed, and Avicenna to do awesome, embarrassing, painful, or hilarious things against cancer! Let’s make use of human beings’ evolutionary tendency towards tribalism and group loyalty, and turn it towards good! Go, team, go!

Blog Break Cat Photo

I’m going into writer hibernation and taking a blog break through October 31, while I finish my next book, “Coming Out Atheist: How To Do It, How to Help Each Other, and Why.”

In the meantime, here is a cat photo. I’ve pre-scheduled at least one cat photo for every day of my break, so you won’t be lonely.

All three cats snuggling

All three cats snuggling!