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Monday, May 14, 2012

mitzvah monday

mitzvah (noun): a good deed, a charitable or meritorious act
I'm not sure that this week's act is really a mitzvah...
...but I want to think of it that way, rather than arm-twisting monday.

I'm going to loosely define the mitzvah monday concept as something that I did during the week meant to benefit someone or something else. Some contribution to the greater good.

Which then benefits me with warm fuzzy feelings as well.

Bringing me to the concern over this week.

I signed up to be team captain for a citywide commuter challenge at my worksite. The idea is to promote alternate transportation, anything other than solo driving, for civic and environmental reasons. Of course active transport has great health benefits too (plus it's fun).

I received a nifty blue t-shirt, some incentive coupons to give out for chocolate and bike flat fixes, free day passes to distribute to colleagues for the bus, a calender of special events for the week, a bus schedule, and a map of all the local bike trails and best streets for walker-bikers.

It turns out that most of my (wonderful!) coworkers have pretty complicated lives. Many of them juggle more than one job, or go to school, or have children who need to be dropped off various places. They are rushing all over town, and don't have a lot of extra time for this challenge--and it does take extra time to bike, bus, walk, or coordinate schedules with someone else.

They have all graciously listened to me, and entertained the notion of trying to get to work in a different manner if possible, and I helped one person figure out which buses she could take and another to brainstorm how to make the rapid transit work with her schedule.

 But I feel a bit like the zealous convert that everyone inwardly groans at (I saw the look in one coworker's eye that I know I get when someone asks me if I know Jesus).

Still, it is a mitzvah! Everyone needs to the joys of biking to work!


It's a continual process, this learning that we are all so different in values and beliefs. And daily lives!

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