Possible Responses to My Boss’s Email Asking for Donations to His Marathon Training Team (For Cancer)

• No.

• No thank you.

• I wish I could but I only make $10 an hour and you keep cutting my hours, so.

• Is it possible to donate anonymously? Just wondering …

• I believe in the separation of charity and exercise.

• You do know that everyone on this list knows you have two houses?

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9 Comments / Post A Comment

honey cowl (#1,510)

“I believe in the separation of charity and exercise.”

THANK GOD YES! I run marathons because I goddamn love to run and it HORRIFIES me that people do this charity running thing! The worst!!!

ATF (#4,229)

@honey cowl For some races it’s the only way in if you’re not fast enough to qualify. The Boston Marathon has harsh qualifying times and it still sold out in just a few hours. Sometimes signing on via a charity team is the only way in.

honey cowl (#1,510)

@ATF For me, someone who is steeped in track & field culture and has been a mid-pack runner for my whole life, that’s WHY I hate the charity running. I want to get to Boston because I put in the work and got to Boston, plain and simple. No judgement on others, of course, but if I’m toeing the line in Hopkinton it’s because I ran a 3:34:59 or faster.

Markovaa (#1,509)

@honey cowl There is a self glorification in charity runs that bother me–”look I am the best person because I exercise AND care!” Do people realize that they can just donate to charity? Or if they would like, they can send an email saying that “For my birthday/Christmas/wedding/second house warming, I would like people to make donations to ________ charity in lieu of presents.”

WayDownSouth (#3,431)

In these circumstances, I just pledge $5. It goes to a good charity and it’s a very inexpensive way to keep the manager on-side.

andnowlights (#2,902)

“You do know that everyone on this list knows you have two houses?”

Oooh this one. If my boss at my last job had asked for money for something like that, I would have been LIVID. She made 3x as much as I did and did NOTHING. I’m mad for you, but also have to agree with WayDownSouth that just sucking it up and giving $5 is the path of least resistance.

Susan Tidebeck (#5,691)

@andnowlights Or how about $5.38 and get him to make change?

Cat Named Louise (#1,943)

I have done charity running, and though I really do believe in raising money to fight cancer, and I think it does a good thing of moving people who wouldn’t do it otherwise to donate to charity, I really stress out over the power and social pressure issues of sending those request emails. I teach university courses and I would never send the emails to my students for the same reason that your boss sending it to you is woefully inappropriate. (Though, sometimes that’s hard because I know some of those students have more money than I do.)

TheEdge (#5,372)

I keep this link handy for when this topic comes up (the link is to page two, because the first paragraph on p.2 says it all).
http://www.bostonmagazine.com/2012/06/charitys-foot-soldiers/2/

In summary: running events are a really inefficient way for charities to raise money, and what’s wrong with making a running event be about the running and not about alienating everyone you come into contact with in the lead up to it by asking them for money?

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