so i got this email

June 6, 2013

that i figured i’d share:

Hi Steven,

Hope all is well!

Pittsburgh AIDS Task Force is in the midst of our spring fundraising/advocacy campaign. PATF is gathering advocates who can donate $30 or more in order to have their name put on a fabric square which will be sewn together to create the PATF patchwork. This patchwork will be publically displayed on World AIDS day to commemorate those we’ve lost and celebrate those we can help save by preventing the spread of the disease.

I’m hoping you can help us by reaching out to contacts in your network that may be able to help us sew the squares together. I’ve included more information about this effort below.

If you have any ideas about how we can grow this patchwork or would like to be involved in some way, please give me a call or shoot me an email.

Jen

now, i’m a pretty shitty sewer
and i’m not in pittsburgh anymore
so any of you pittsburgh bitches who are good at quilting
and would like to help the pittsburgh aids task force sew up their squares, shoot an email to jen JFicarriATpatfDOTorg.

as for the rest of us,
i think we should donate, no?
i’m pretty fucking broke right now,
but i’ll eat some rice for a few days
and make a donation.

want the details? of course you do. because you’re a good person.
144
Join Pittsburgh AIDS Task Force in sewing our community together to show that we are still here and still fighting HIV. Be an advocate for our mission of supporting and empowering all individuals living with HIV/AIDS and preventing the spread of infection.

Support PATF by sponsoring a fabric square printed with your name, the names of loved ones, or HIV/AIDS statistics. Names from all across the community will be stitched together to form the PATF Patchwork to debut on World AIDS Day, December 2013.

The PATF Patchwork will be publically displayed as a symbol of our community united in the fight against HIV/AIDS.

Choose the sponsorship level that works for you
$30 one name (first and last)
$50 two names
$125 “In memory of” or “In honor of” an individual
$250 sponsors four squares of HIV/AIDS statistics 
and includes your name

click here to donate!

do please leave a comment if you make a donation so i know!
i’m not saying you’re a bad person if you don’t donate but . . . .

lucky

July 7, 2011

around the beginning of each month,
i go and get an hiv test.

i’m a gay dude in his 20’s.
it’s only practical.

and even though i should be used to it by now,
it’s a surreal experience every time.

as i sit in the little testing room,
making small talk with the lovely tester,
all i can think about is how very lucky i am.
not just because, so far, i always test nonreactive,
but because there exists a place where i can literally walk in off the street, say i want to get tested, and in thirty minutes or less, i walk out with an answer.

anonymously.

free of charge.

i grew up in the era when aids decimated the gay population in america, but i was really too young to be aware of what that would mean for me now.

it destroyed a way of life,
a connection to history,
the chance for the children of today know their elders.
all i have are ghosts stories, and the few “lucky” ones who survived.

it changed everything,
and i find myself mourning
as i imagine someone mourns a parent they never knew.

i get really choked up about it sometimes.

and during the twenty minutes i sit there
waiting to see if there’s one line or two,
i never think about my own results.
i only wonder
why the waiting room isn’t full?
why isn’t there a line out the door?
are people really that scared to know?
or are they so naive as to think they couldn’t test positive?
i think about the millions, millions who had to die
so that i can sit here,
pay nothing,
and know.

it’s not like hiv and aids have gone away.
but i don’t hear people talk about it anymore.

i don’t get it.

there’s a lot of things i don’t understand;
i admit to being slightly ignorant about hiv myself.
but what i do know is,
i’m a lucky guy.
not because i’m negative,
but because i know.

i’m just one small voice among the millions of bloggers.
i don’t command much attention.
i definitely don’t have much money.
still. i’d still like to do something.

right now all i can do is give away this skein of handspun.
fiber: 2oz spinning bunny pixie batt = merino, black and/or blue face leicester, tencel, angelina, angora, silk, and bamboo.
if i did my math right,
there’re 315yds of 2ply lace weight.
hand spun by me.

i just ask that you consider making a donation to the pittsburgh aids task force who provide so much more than just free rapid testing. if you don’t have much money, i’d ask that you considering going and getting tested.

either way,
you only need to leave a comment to enter.
but if you do make a donation, i’d love to know.
it’d be pretty cool if we raised a couple hundred bucks.

i’ll pick a winner in a week.

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