My dad began his welcome speech at my sister’s wedding in 2006 by quoting Woody Allen, “Eighty percent of life is showing up.” I didn’t appreciate its significance at the time, but I’ve still never forgotten it. What Woody meant was that those who have an idea or pursuit and just go for it, are already 80% of the way toward their objective. The majority of people strikeout because they never put pen to paper and get started.
Woody Allen’s quote about showing up took on a whole new, unintended meaning for me on Friday. It wasn’t me, or the Green Lady who showed up, it was you. Family showed up. New friends and old friends, some of whom I hadn’t seen in years, showed up. My drinking buddies showed up in force, and put a hurting on those kegs. Co-workers left work early to get there before the doors opened, eager to contribute their time and energy. Brewery owners and industry members, they more than showed up. Fellow beer enthusiasts who only knew my username on BeerAdvocate, TalkBeer, Instagram, or Twitter, they showed up in force. Parents whose kids were helped by Lurie or had experienced the challenges of MRIs themselves, you’re damn right they showed up. People who I'd never met before, but wanted to be a part of this special cause helped pack the bar. One young man didn’t even know about the event, but walked by the outside, saw the crowd, and stopped in. Turns out that he has had multiple surgeries to remove tumors in his leg. He spent the entire night hanging out with us.
Craft beer is a powerful tool, but its recent competitiveness causes us to sometimes lose sight of the reasons why we made this an interest or profession in the first place. Friday however, the passion was at its absolute best. Sometimes there’s nothing stronger than just showing up, and I would encourage you all to continue doing so when you see passion on display. You won’t just make somebody’s day, but they will remember it for the rest of their life. I know that after the kindness you all showed us, I’m done making excuses and will be showing up a lot more often. We proudly raised a stunning $15,308 on Friday night alone, putting the grand total at $25,393 since starting this campaign in April.
Thanks for showing up. I'm forever grateful.
Note: Not all elements of the night have hit the page yet, but they will over the next few weeks. To donate directly, go to: http://foundation.luriechildrens.org/goto/veliky