Mark Salzman Invites You to Stay Home and Read a Book

Mark Salzman, writer/performer extraordinaire and this year’s chair of the Stay Home and Read a Book Ball, invites you to take part in the most delightful non-event of the year. The official celebration takes place Friday, March 1, 2013 but you can revel all year long. Learn more here, and be sure to follow along and share your own festivities on Facebook and Twitter @LibraryFoundLA #LFLAStayHome.

Dear Reader:

It is my pleasure to invite you to participate in the 25th Annual Stay Home and Read a Book Ball, a delightful non-event that promotes the Los Angeles Public Library and what it means: free and open access to information, lifelong learning, and democracy. In case you aren’t familiar with it, here’s how it works: on the night of the ball, you stay home and read a book.

Whoever thought of this campaign is a genius. We Angelenos can support one of our most cherished public institutions – 73 libraries in all, serving our community since 1872 – without having to make even a single pass through the Urban Fundraising Event Landscape. Here’s how my “night at the ball” went last year: I moved straight from the dinner table to my bedroom with a glass of bourbon in one hand and a book in the other. I told my kids to supervise themselves for a change. They had to finish their homework, walk the dog, feed the fish, brush their teeth, put on their jammies, Skype with mommy who was on a job in China, and then get themselves to bed before nine. Having delivered those instructions and kissed everyone goodnight, I closed the bedroom door, enjoyed the bourbon, and then took a moment to offer my silent thanks to the Los Angeles Public Library for giving me an excuse to do this. Then I fell asleep.

(The book, I confess, was a prop. I can’t keep my eyes open past 8 anymore. Only young people and empty-nesters seem to have the stamina for it.)

The Stay Home and Read a Book Ball has been going strong for 25 years now, but we mustn’t become complacent. If we don’t continue to support it, then it’s back to auctions and ice sculptures for all of us. So be a good sport, help me help you stay out of traffic, and help the library help all of us stay out of darkness. Give generously.

Sincerely yours,
Mark Salzman



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