Penguins, pirates, and charity.


Who would think the bearded, piratical, bourbon-toting reprobate shown above would have a socially responsible side?

Well, he does; and if you have a couple stray dollars to support it, he’d appreciate your consideration.

He has — oh, hell, let’s just switch to first person — I have long wanted to do a “polar plunge”-type event involving immersion in cold, wintry water. I even signed up for one in Pennsylvania, some years ago, only to be stranded at home by a significant snowstorm the night before.

(The event was in the Poconos and my little car wasn’t going to make it over the rabbit trails up there with a fresh foot-plus of snow. Discretion was the better part of valor. The full story can be read here.)

Some colleagues of mine in New Hampshire are doing a “penguin plunge” into the Atlantic Ocean in early February to benefit the Special Olympics there. I quite liked the idea, but I thought 90-odd minutes to Hampton Beach was a long way to drive for a few minutes of action.

Then I found out the Special Olympics runs these plunge events all over the place in the early months of the year — including several closer to my home.

And thus, dear reader, I signed up today for the 2020 Passion Plunge, taking place Feb. 8 on Lake Cochituate in Natick, Mass.

It’s pronounced ka-CHIT-chew-it, and in current traffic it’s 24 minutes from my house, almost all of it on state highways. So another weather-related miss — while not impossible — should hopefully be less likely.

(In the worst of winter weather I am called in to work, and I can’t control that. But in the worst of winter weather I would hope the Passion Plunge — a most piquant name, eh, reader? — would be postponed a week.)

I’m about halfway to the fundraising minimum of $100, and would like to get there.

I’m never comfortable using this space for financial requests (which is why I basically never do), and I know this is a lousy time of year to ask for donations, since everyone’s spent out from the holidays.

Still, if you have a couple bucks to spare, my donation page is here, and any gift is appreciated. Again, the beneficiary is Special Olympics of Massachusetts, which as far as I know is a worthy cause.

Thanks for any consideration, and I’ll let you know how it goes.


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