Tomorrow you'll be receiving from the Soy/Somos series the first half of Diego's story. Diego is a storyboard illustrator and also Puerto Rican, and while he lives in New York, his parents and family live on the island, still suffering the devastation of hurricane Maria and our government's utter failure to help.
Yesterday, "Maria Was Also a 'Real Catastrophe,'" the NYTimes' reported that "on Wednesday, the president smugly declared that 'we did a fantastic job.'" The death toll resulting from the hurricane is now estimated at 2,975, the Times reported, and "it is essential for Americans on the mainland to appreciate that their fellow Americans in the Caribbean have suffered a life-altering catastrophe greater than Hurricanes Katrina or Harvey and require the same outpouring of help and sympathy as New Orleans or Houston. This is a time to open hearts and wallets."
This weekend, while playing in NYC, Donald and I came across a gallery on Ninth Avenue featuring the #StrangersProject, displaying some 200 single-page, handwritten stories written by people from all walks of life. The 8x11 pieces of paper where hanging on clotheslines around the room. We stopped to read; we spoke with the creator, who has collected more than 40,000 stories. "What is it like being you?" It's a phenomenon! See STRANGERSPROJECT.COM. People's stories, all ages and backgrounds, were stunningly similar. They felt lonely, loved someone, lost someone, longed for someone or something, were afraid, felt they didn't count. Ordinary, essential things that all of us feel. We are so much more alike than different. This is what I mean to convey in my conversations with Hispanics/Latinos/Latinx, in the Soy/Somos series.
Make the time for Diego's story tomorrow. He's an artist and very interesting human.