Steven R Leonard

TAINTED CONFESSIONS

“I don’t have

Money on my mind

Money on my mind

I do it for
I do it for the love”
Sam Smith

BEGGING STRANGERS FOR ART MONEY

Technology has never been my BFF. I grew up in the 1960s and 1970s, and for several years our low-income family shared a party line with another family for our home phone. When I wanted to call a friend, I picked up the phone and if I heard another conversation going on I was supposed to hang up immediately and try back later. However, most of the time I quietly listened to the conversation hoping to hear salacious details of an extra-marital affair, or some nefarious activity like a bookie threatening to club kneecaps and skulls with a Louisville Slugger if money wasn’t paid by the end of the week.

Most of the boring conversations I heard consisted of recipes for brownies (two sticks of butter is preferred), or exaggerated accounts of the church picnic when the local priest drank too many beers and had to be driven home by a conscientious parishioner. Not once was I shocked by a story so juicy that I felt compelled to repeat it to anyone else. We felt richer than the Rockefellers when we could finally afford own our own landline.

Take that Standard Oil!

In 1971 my father bought a used small air conditioning unit that he clumsily attached to a kitchen window. On hot summer days we’d splurge and leave it on when we went grocery shopping so when we returned home the cool breeze of the a.c. unit would welcome us home.

Our house feels like we stuck our head in the refrigerator!

Months later we heard a loud bang, crash, kaplong! – the entire contraption had fallen to the ground into several pieces and it hissed like an angry rattle snake preparing to strike.

Oh no, heaven is broken!

Technology has changed the world so much in my lifetime that now I can register on a website like Indigogo and ask strangers around the world for money to fund animated videos from humorous stories in my memoir The Easter Duckling That Couldn’t Swim. What’s next – jet packs for everyone? – oh, wait, I was promised that as a child. As a writer I’m amazed by the variety of tools online available with a single click of my mouse and a valid credit card number.

Indigogo is an established crowdfunding platform and a wonderful website for aspiring artists and do-gooders that want to contribute to various art projects around the world. My goal is to raise $29,990 to fund more animated videos for my book and website stevenrleonard.com. This is my virgin attempt to secure money for any endeavor I’ve been involved with – please be gentle and generous.

My talented animator, Joel Heaton, would crawl naked across the Gobi Desert if it meant he could spend the next several months locked in his office laboring over his drawings, narrating words from each chapter in my book. Trust me, the world is a better place with a fully clothed Joel subsisting on caffeine and adrenaline working to create art that entertains and amuses.

If you appreciate animation and the mind-numbing time that goes into each frame check out his work on my website and visit our interesting project on Indiegogo. There are several worthy enterprises in various stages of funding, and I encourage everyone to contribute to any project that moves them in a way that only art can. The world has changed dramatically since I was a child, but the power of giving never goes out of style.

Ciao belli lettori.

Steven Leonard

Steven R. Leonard is a writer born, raised and paroled (from his family) in Denver. He’s written a humorous and heartbreaking memoir detailing his childhood.

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