giving back :)

2

On a frigid winter night, a man wearing two coats shuffles into a brightly lit brick restaurant in downtown Madrid. Staff greet him warmly; he’s been here many times. The maître d’ stamps his ID card, and the hungry man selects a table with a red tablecloth, under a big brass chandelier.

The man, Luis Gallardo, is homeless — and so are all the diners, every night, at the city’s Robin Hood restaurant. Its mission is to charge the rich and feed the poor. Paying customers at breakfast and lunch foot the bill for the restaurant to serve dinner to homeless people, free of charge.

It’s become Spain’s most sought-after lunch reservation. The restaurant has poached staff from luxury hotels. Celebrity chefs are lining up to cook once a week. For paying clients, the lunch is fully booked through the end of March.

The restaurant opened in early December, and is run by an 80-year-old Catholic priest, Ángel García Rodriguez, whom everyone knows simply as “Padre Ángel.”

Spain’s ‘Robin Hood Restaurant’ Charges The Rich And Feeds The Poor

Photos: Pablo Blazquez Dominguez/Getty Images

6

We know what’s right. The strong protect the weak. Never forget that.

Captain America #695

hey i just wanted to say that if you’re already scraping by to make ends meet, the holidays are really hard. and that puts pressure on you and on your whole family. and if there’s one thing i hope you know it’s that you don’t need to prove you love someone by buying them something. i know we all want to get the people we care about really fancy things. but i’m okay if you get me like a smooth rock you found by the ocean. i know it’s true of other people, too. i’d rather you hand me a diy picture frame from popsicle sticks than something you had to go into debt to buy, and i think any person who’s worth their socks will tell you the same thing. and on that note? everybody loves socks, and they’re pretty cheap. yes, it’d be great if you and i stumbled on enough money to actually afford things. but love, i’ve learned, isn’t about the buying.

and on that note? for those of you out there who find the holidays a particularly dark time… i hope you know there will always be someone willing to open the door for you. even when it feels like there’s no one. even if that door is a window you have to crawl through. 

and for those of us who have more than we need, i hope we open those doors. if you notice someone who is going to be alone during the holidays, or who is usually depressed but for no apparent reason seems markedly happy and is giving away their things, please invite them over. hang out with them, no matter how awkward it is. sudden cleaning and long notes about how much they love you are also signs of suicide. with recent changes in insurance, it’s increasingly harder to find mental health care, so help a friend out (and maybe even yourself!) by figuring out who still takes the insurance offered so we can all give ourselves the gift of coping mechanisms, the gift that keeps on giving.

i hope you all are happy and safe this season!

8

we all held hands
and all 6 of us with two feet worked together,
so that no one would fall
and we were ready to run again
,” - #151115WithBAP

Something I’ve talked about with friends before, is that Peridot’s character arc has been about learning empathy and compassion, right? She knew nothing of those things before landing on earth, and has had quite the crash course (heh) in giving a shit about other people. 

Or as Rebecca Sugar put it once, “She’s excited by the infinite potential of everything, and fascinated by her own capacity to care, because those things had been a total blind spot for her.“ 

And like…thinking about her friendship with Lapis, I feel like she accidentally swung too far the other way. She went from “I don’t care about any of you, I just want off this rock before it explodes,” to “Upsetting Amethyst, even by accident, makes me feel so awful that I’m going to record an apology.” She had an episode of her trying to empathize with Garnet. She saw Steven’s empathy save the planet from the Cluster. She had an episode where she had to see things from the perspective of a corrupted gem (in order to poof it, but still). She tried to make Amethyst feel better about the Jasper situation by taking her to the Beta Kindergarten (which backfired, but her heart was in the right place). 

And she sometimes has the zeal of a recent convert–look at her little speeches to both Jasper and Navy. 

Then there’s Lapis. Peridot fumbles the beginning of that one, but she’s trying, yeah? And she just keeps trying. And trying. And trying. And she just doesn’t know when to stop. Lapis’s reactions, on screen, range from polite-but-distant interest to outright hostility. She doesn’t try to kick Peridot out of the barn again, and she half-asses some morps and watches TV with her and uses her water powers to water their field and takes a lot of naps. 

Meanwhile Peridot constantly tries to engage her and check in with her and is always monitoring Lapis’s emotions if she’s around. Because Peridot doesn’t know that there’s a happy medium between “I don’t care about you” and “your needs are more important than mine.” 

Eventually Peridot got into the habit of changing her words and actions to appease Lapis’s moods. It’s worth remembering that Lapis can be genuinely terrifying when angry, and she’s incredibly powerful. I’ve been around people with mercurial moods who are frightening when they’re angry, and you end up hypervigilant and walking on eggshells all the time. It sucks!! And Peridot has no idea that that’s not what caring for someone means–that a good friendship has give and take; that you shouldn’t have to censor yourself around them out of fear; than you don’t have to (literally!) bend over backwards to please or placate them. 

Peridot’s only other experience of caring about someone else, prior to landing on earth, was caring about Yellow Diamond. “I don’t matter! What’s important is that I’m of use to Yellow Diamond!” Poor baby’s only experience of caring about someone else was slavish devotion without question. No wonder she doesn’t think about herself or her own needs.

So I’m hoping the pendulum will swing the other way a little. I want Peridot to find that she can care for someone and they can care for her just as much–that there’s something really amazing in caring about someone who cares equally about you. That kindness and compassion can go both ways.