#SNAPchallenge2013: Seeing Dollars and Cents as Dinners and Snacks

To your left, you’ll find Julius Rock, the fictionalized version of Chris Rock’s father portrayed on Everybody Hates Chris. The hallmarks of his existence that Chris chose to carry through to the show include a fear of rabbits, gout and, most openly, his thrift. Julius constantly goes around the house noting waste, complaining about “36 cents worth of plastic wrap” or “2 dollars worth of chicken”. In fact, he urges the kids to unplug their clocks while they’re asleep- “you can’t tell time when you’re asleep!”

I’ve taken on a Julius-like tendency over the course of this challenge. No, I have not ground all spending to a standstill, nor have I taken to collecting and reusing excess juice (as I believe is the case above). Rather, I look at prices of items, and see them in terms of how much food they could buy. For example, a few days before I started the challenge, I went out to dinner and had a bill of roughly 16 dollars. My first thought? “This is going to be about 4 days worth of food.”

And now, nearly two weeks into the challenge, that reflex has only gotten worse. At Marshalls with a coworker, I saw a pair of shoes as a week and a half worth of food, a book as roughly 8 days worth. And when I think about the conversion rate given by the Greater Boston Food Bank ($1 equals 2.36 meals), just think about how many meals our daily purchases could provide, purchases that we generally think nothing of!

As I write this post, my friends and family have raised money to the tune of over 1000 meals through the Greater Boston Food Bank. I am astounded that this project has garnered that much support, and yet still ache to do more. How much further can we go? How many meals can we get by the end of the month? Time (and the support of those around me) will tell…

I’m doing this in hopes to raise awareness about food instability, and money for the Greater Boston Food Bank. Should you feel compelled to give to the latter, please click the link below! I thank you, as will those who benefit from the money that you give 🙂
http://www.crowdrise.com/SNAPchallenge0113/ 

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