Author Justine Larbalestier (who is a dear pal of mine) is writing up a novel set in the 1930s, and as a result some of her characters do a dance called the “Lindy Hop.” Not knowing that facetious comments on one’s site will often cause one to gain an unwanted obligation, Justine jokingly asked her readers if she should learn the dance — to which fellow author John Greene promised $1,000 to the charity of her choice if she did. Well, now there’s $1,425 $2,100 in the pot, and Justine’s feeling the pressure to learn the dance.
But she’s resisting — and foolishly! Because now she’s challenging The Whole Internet™ to pony up cash to make her learn to dance the Lindy Hop, the money of course being donated to a good cause, in this case the New York Public Library. Her deal is this: If the Internets pledge $5,000 to the NYPL by next Monday, she will learn the Lindy Hop (to be verified by third parties). If they do not, she will not, although she will make a donation to the NYPL.
So the NYPL wins in any event, but, come on. We all want to see Justine do this:
So: If you want to make Justine Larbalestier Dance the Lindy Hop (and you do!), here’s what you do:
2. Put in a comment announcing how much you will pledge to the cause (NOTE: DO NOT DONATE YET. You’re just pledging). You can pledge any amount, but remember that you’re going to be held to your pledge, so make it a real pledge. Seriously.
3. Do it by Monday 5pm Eastern, at which point I suspect Justine will tally up the numbers and find out whether she’s learning to dance, or keeping her two left feet.
$5,000 might seem a lofty goal, but remember there’s already $1,425 $2,100 in the pot, so we’re talking a paltry $3,575 $2,900, which is totally doable.
What happens when everything’s tallied up? Well, if the number is over $5k, then you’ll need to make your donation based on what you pledged. Fortunately the New York Public Library has a donation page online, which will make it easy for you to fulfill your end of things (you can alternately become a formal Friend of the Library, starting at $40).
So there you have. Feel free to share this around, and let’s get Justine winging her way through the Lindy Hop. It’s for a good cause — and it’ll be funny as hell. Everyone wins.