This has been a quiet board here of late for some reason. However, since I'm the one who started it, I figured I'd have to join in after a break and try to start some chatting going on.I hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving, wherever you may be.My FIRE plans are on hold for several reasons. Due to extremely tight finances, I had to cut back on FIRE saving. Also, I am doing work that I truly love. See www.bookemfoundation.org for just a glimpse of what I'm doing to promote literacy. If I knew my work could continue like it has been, I wouldn't be concerned about FIRE at all. However, I know things change change at any moment. So, I'm saddened that my FIRE savings have decreased. Hopefully, one day, I can get them back up to where they were. We'll see.I hope everyone else is doing well and that your FIRE plans are still in the works. For lack of nothing else happening on this board, how about some stories bring us up to date on where you are in your life.I wrote a post on the REHP last weekend that gave a brief update on what I'm doing. I'll find a link to paste here. Ok, the link is below, but I also copied and pasted the post so you wouldn't have to click on the link if you weren't interested. http://boards.fool.com/Message.asp?mid=23322951Hey there Fools,I just thought I'd give you an update on my quest to conquer the world's problems by promoting literacy.I can't remember if I've posted about Townsend Press or the Bluford Series before. The Bluford Series are a series of 10 books, all less than 200 pages that are written at a 5th to 6th grade reading level. The characters are primarily minorities as are the ones pictured on the covers. The content of the books are real life teen issues appropriate for middle and high school students. Some titles are "The Gun", "The Bully", "Someone to Love Me", "A Matter of Trust" and more. Kids are literally eating these books up. My oldest read "The Gun" early in the school year came to me telling me I had to invite this author to Book 'Em. When he told me the title of the book, I raised my eyebrows as to what is this book about. I read it and found out why he liked it so much. I contacted the author, who works for Townsend Press and the next thing I know I'm hearing from the President of the company. He offered to donate some books to me. Some books????To date, I've gotten 1,500 copies of the Bluford Series. He's also sent me 90 copies of 30 of the Classices. I have given books out all over. But, I also started a program at one of the local middle schools in the 8th grade.There are roughly 225 8th grade students in 11 English Classes. I am going into every English class and making deals with the kids. I'll give them a book, no strings attached, and if they like it, I'll keep giving them more. I don't care if the kids read them or not, I'm giving each one a new copy every time I go back. I have found out that every kid, upper level, lower level, special ed and more are loving these books and are asking for more.Next week, I'll start making my 3rd round into the classes.I started something new this week as I just got the Classics in.I took two of the Classics with me, "Gulliver's Travels" and "Last of the Mohicans". I don't have enough copies to hand out to everyone, but I'm talking about the books and showing them to the kids.The amazing thing is, on the Townsend Press website, www.townsendpress.com, you can buy copies of the Bluford Series or any of the 30 classics for $1. Yep, $1. It's amazing to me, but here I am, a cop and kids of all races and sexes and education levels are so happy to see me coming to give out books to them. They love these books. On another note, I'm going go go into a prison soon to talk to the inmates about reading and I'm going to donate 50 copies of the Bluford Series to the prison library as well as one set of the 30 classics.Here I'll be, a small of build cop in a medium security prison talking about reading and giving away books. Sounds like fun to me! My "cops reading in schools" program will start up again in a week. At the end of the last school year, I had 15 officers reading to 30 classes from Pre-K to 5th grade each month. This year, I think we'll read to even more classes.I was invited to go to an Elementary School in Charlottesville soon to spend perhaps a day there reading to all grade levels. I was also contacted by an Officer in Fairfax County, VA PD about the various literacy programs I have. He is going to try to get some started up there. I also have permission from the Producer/Director of "Colors Straight Up" to show this movie in public venues. My Chief has given me permission to travel to show this movie. Are there any Fools within say 4 hours or so of me who want me to come show the movie. You'll have to advertise it, find me a venue, HS auditoriums work great and hopefully get me a small crowd there. I'll give a short talk and show the movie at no charge. The website for the movie is www.colorstraightup.com. I'm really getting motivated to keep up what I've started. Education is power and reading gets a person educated. If any law enforcement officers are reading this, feel free to shoot me an e-mail and I'll explain more. I'm trying to spread some of these programs globally.I also have the Book 'Em event that I'm working to spread to selected locations globally. The Upper Valley of New Hampshire, Lebanon NH, may be the next location of a Book 'Em. See www.bookemfoundation.org for more information.Thanks for listening and wish me luck in my quest. If anyone can give me ideas on how I can go from a poor cop to someone who can actually be considered a middle class living, let me know. I love my work, but I'm still poor. So, how can I make my love of promoting literacy a job where I make more money?mazske
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