It all started months ago, when I decided to publicly work my way through “Everyday Dharma: Seven Weeks to Finding the Buddha in You” by Lama Willa Miller. When I approached Quest Books with the idea of having the author respond to each of my weeks, Xochi Adame, publicist numero uno at Quest Books, offered to do some sort of give away where one of my readers could win a copy of “Everyday Dharma”. Since she found my comparison of setting up my home altar to the television show “Pimp My Ride” amusing, she suggested maybe a “Pimp My Altar” contest. We both liked the idea of it being something to bring readers together in an interactive way, so we roughed out the idea of readers sending photos in of their altars/sacred spaces so other readers could see how their fellow readers approached it. Then through some yet to be defined means a winner would be chosen.
As the time to publish week three of the “Everyday Dharma” challenge approached I knew I was going to need some way to determine a winner. Since most blogs feature polls or votes I thought it might be good to let my readers pick a winner by voting, that way the contest would essentially be powered entirely by my readers, and it would force me to figure out how to make polls work on The Magical Buffet website. With that decided, I whipped up what Xochi and I found to be a fairly entertaining contest announcement. It got published, and that’s when I found myself stuck in what I’ve decided to call “PimpGate”.
First, I feel obliged to say that the pimp has no better friend than myself. I like purple velvet, A Pimp Named Slickback (Yes, his name is A Pimp Named Slickback. Yes you say the whole thing, including A Pimp Named, every time.), and back handing people. So before going any further, to all the actual pimps out there, I’m sorry if somehow you felt the “Pimp My Sacred Space” contest belittled your cruelty, violence, and unlawful business practices by implying there is any element of spirituality in what you do. Hopefully this will nip in the bud any sort of pimp related backlash (or back hand) that may have been brewing out there.
Pimps aside, many of you guys found the “Pimp My Sacred Space” contest decidedly uncool. Apparently the word pimp and the concept of “pimping out” aren’t necessarily big with some of my readers. If somehow my attempts at comical parlance caused you any concern, I am sorry, never in a million years would I intentionally belittle or make light of an individual’s spiritual practices. I’d like to think that my readers know this, since although expressing some concern, most of them said they would continue reading The Magical Buffet. I had more people unsubscribe after writing about Florence and the Machine than I had for suggesting that people pimp out their altars. I find that oddly comforting. Of course more comforting was Lama Willa Miller’s (author of “Everyday Dharma) twitter response to learning of the “Pimp My Sacred Space” contest, “Win a free copy of Everyday Dharma in the pimpin-est way: http://bit.ly/d6Ore9” I love that lady.
You know who else I love? The one brave woman who said to herself, “I want free stuff, and I’m willing to take a photo for the opportunity.” Behold, the altar of our one contest entry! She can hold her head high knowing that for under two minutes of effort she will be receiving a free copy of “Everyday Dharma” and maybe even a Quest Books tote bag.
Ma’am, I salute you.