Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Bless His Cotton Socks

Every culture has its own polite way of saying, “He’s an idiot.” In South Africa, a friend of mine who grew up there will say “Bless his cotton socks." In the Southern U.S., I’ve heard the common, “Bless his heart.” In California, we tend to use the somewhat lukewarm, “He meant well.”

These sayings are used at the end of sentences like, “Joe fell off the top step of the ladder again, bless his heart," or “Judy is wearing that peacock-feathered hat again, bless her heart.” In grant writing there’s a little different set of applications for these sayings. Here are a few:
  1. “Mortimer thought the budget would be easy to put together so he waited until 8AM on the deadline date to start. Bless his heart.”
  2. “Jackie skimmed the RFA and missed the fact that there had to be an evaluation section. Bless her heart.”
  3. “George figured a one page letter of commitment wasn’t a big deal for the partners so he didn’t ask request them until a week before the deadline. Bless his cotton socks.”
  4. “Fernando wanted to save paper so he reduced the font to size ten in all the tables when the RFA required a size 12, but he meant well.”
  5. “Wynona put 20 computers in the project budget but didn’t describe how she’d use them in the narrative. Bless her heart.”
While we use these sayings to accommodate the humanity of our follies, finding them at the end of a sentence in a grant writing process is generally very bad news. Don’t invite someone to bless your cotton socks as a grant writer!


This post was written by Derek Link, non-profit consultant and expert grant writer.


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foxygknits said...

Great post, bless your heart! (Sorry, I couldn't help myself. Please forgive me!)

Derek said...

Touche! (you must be someone who knows me)

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Creative Resources and Research is a consulting firm specializing in grant writing, grant seeking, program evaluation and professional development training. We have worked with hundreds of clients including public and private schools, school districts, universities, non-profit organizations, and social service agencies throughout California, securing over $155 million from federal, state and private foundation funding sources over the past decade. Our primary grant writers and program evaluators have over 50 years of combined experience in the education and social services fields. At CRR we prefer a personal approach to the clients we work with; by developing long term relationships, we are better suited to match client’s needs with available funding sources. We provide a variety of services to help assist you, including grant writing, evaluation consulting, professional development opportunities, and workshops.