the left drop.

we talked last week about supporting dems everywhere who had courage. who weren't all spineless and skerred to support policies that the vast majority of their voting base strongly supports.

what we mean to say is: every drop counts. 

we think a lot about why we do what we do. about why we host free breakfasts. about why we were so willing to donate more than 50% of our profits to chicago charitable orgs for so long. and it ain't cuz our donations helped those orgs to add new programming or hire new staff: the donations most certainly did not. we're a tiny little beer company! it's because every drop counts. and every drop counts because one drop seems to attract other drops. and the eventually drops turn into tidal waves.

so: we host a free breakfast. and then maybe our neighbor restaurant helps us on our next free breakfast. and maybe in a year they're hosting their own version of it. 

same goes for politics. start small. support courageous people. *show*  your friends and neighbors what it means to be an ethical, good citizen. argue on facebook. go to protests. *be public* about your social justice work. about small donations to community-oriented organizations. ... not only might your vote or your donation or your decision be meaningful in an of itself (per se), but it might influence just the right number of people to follow suit.

first, it's about knowing that you're just a drop. then it's about proudly being exactly the drop you want to be. and then, through your knowing and being, it's about creating other similar drops.

david mitchell put it best at the end of cloud atlas:

"my recent adventures have made me quite the philosopher, especially at night, when I hear naught but the stream grinding boulders into pebbles through an unhurried eternity. my thoughts flow thus. scholars discern motions in history & formulate these motions into rules that govern the rises & falls of civilizations. my belief runs contrary, however. to wit: history admits no rules; only outcomes.
what precipitates outcomes? vicious acts & virtuous acts.
what precipitates acts? belief.
belief is both prize & battlefield, within the mind & in the mind's mirror, the world. if we believe humanity is a ladder of tribes, a colosseum of confrontation, exploitation & bestiality, such a humanity is surely brought into being, & history's horroxes, boerhaaves & gooses shall prevail. uou & i, the moneyed, the privileged, the fortunate, shall not fare so badly in this world, provided our luck holds. what of it if our consciences itch? why undermine the dominance of our race, our gunships, our heritage & our legacy? why fight the 'natural' (oh, weaselly word!) order of things?
why? Because of this: - one fine day, a purely predatory world shall consume itself. yes, the devil shall take the hindmost until the foremost is the hindmost. in an individual, selfishness uglifies the soul; for the human species, selfishness is extinction.
is this the entropy written within our nature?
if we believe that humanity may transcend tooth & claw, if we believe divers races & creeds can share this world as peaceably as the orphans share their candlenut tree, if we believe leaders must be just, violence muzzled, power accountable & the riches of the earth & its oceans shared equitably, such a world will come to pass. i am not deceived. it is the hardest of worlds to make real. tortuous advances won over generations can be lost by a single stroke of a myopic president's pen or a vainglorious general's sword.
a life spent shaping a world i want jackson to inherit, not one i fear Jackson shall inherit, this strikes me as a life worth the living. upon my return to san francisco, i shall pledge myself to the abolitionist cause, because i owe my life to a self-freed slave & because i must begin somewhere.
i hear my father-in-law's response. 'oho, fine, whiggish sentiments, adam. but don't tell me about justice! ride to tennessee on an ass & convince the red-necks that they are merely white-washed negroes & their negroes are black-washed whites! sail to the old world, tell 'em their imperial slaves' rights are as inalienable as the [kwain] of belgium's! oh, you'll grow hoarse, poor & grey in caucuses! you'll be spat on, shot at, lynched, pacified with medals, spurned by backwoodsmen! crucified! naive, dreaming adam. he who would do battle with the many-headed hydra of human nature must pay a world of pain & his family must pay it along with him! & only as you gasp your dying breath shall you understand, your life amounted to no more than one drop in a limitless ocean!'
yet what is any ocean but a multitude of drops?" david mitchell.

"and then rush to meet your lover. and play with real fire 'til the dawn". willie.