A few weeks ago, my friend Margo (who is a blogger and YouTuber) invited me to participate in a charity project, and I jumped at the chance. I got the final product the other day, and it’s super cool. Introducing… F*CK 2016 – A 2017 CALENDAR!
Margo and her friend Joey put this together in response to all the awful things that happened in 2016. I don’t get political on this blog, but yes, I voted for Hillary, so the election results are on my list, but so are other horrific events like the water crisis in Flint, Michigan (only an hour from where I grew up) and the Pulse nightclub shooting.
Plus, on a much more personal level, 2016 was the year that I had to put down my dog, relinquish another dog, and watch as Richard Simmons’ gym, where my fitness and weight loss journey began, closed its doors for good.
SO, YEAH. I’m done with 2016. Bring on 2017!
Margo and Joey reached out to artists to contribute artwork for the calendar, and Margo asked if I had a maze that they could feature for one of the months. OF COURSE! I spent the next evening creating a new maze specifically for the calendar. It references another big 2016 news story, North Carolina’s HB2, the bill that, among other things, prevents transgender people from using the restroom consistent with their gender identity.
And now that maze graces the month of March – my birthday month!
Here’s a close-up (click on it to see it bigger):
The directions are in the speech bubble: “Help me find the gender neutral bathroom before I wet my pants!”
Every month in the calendar features a different black-and-white piece of artwork. In addition to my maze, there are photographs, drawings, paintings – all sorts of beautiful images. All proceeds go to charity, and each artist got to pick a cause that would get a portion of those proceeds. I chose The Trevor Project, the leading organization providing crisis intervention and suicide prevent services to LGBTQ youth. Other beneficiaries of the proceeds include the ACLU, the National Domestic Violence Hotline, Planned Parenthood, and the NAACP Legal Defense Fund.
The calendar costs $20. Visit the website to learn more and purchase your copy (plus one for all your friends). There’s also a $10 PDF version that you print at home, and a $20 “grandma-friendly” version that’s swear-free.
I’m also selling the original drawing of my maze on Etsy for $25. There’s only one original, so this is a one-of-a-kind! All the proceeds will get added to the kitty to be split among all 12 causes. Check it out here.
BUT WAIT, THERE’S MORE! Mazes make great gifts, and I just added a lot of new inventory to my online maze store! Every year I make my nephews and niece a book of mazes for Christmas, and this year, I’ve been chronicling the process on my Instagram feed. I’ve gotten a lot of great feedback, so I uploaded the mazes on Etsy. All nine of them are there, as well as two combo packs (you save 20% on the combo packs!). All the mazes are themed around places around the country, like Los Angeles, Chicago, Michigan, and Florida, and get ready, because they are tough! Check them out here.
Oh, and since my nephews and niece aren’t getting their maze books until Christmas morning, keep your big mouth shut if you see them. Don’t ruin the surprise!
Drawing mazes is something I’ve done my entire life, and as much as I love solving them, I really love the mental challenge of creating them. Having a creative outlet, like maze drawing and this blog, for that matter, is paramount to my mental health, and putting the final touches on an awesome new maze provides an incredible natural high.
Keep it up, David!
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