Thanks Y’all Very Much!

My business partner, Mary Sullivan, got a letter the other day from a woman named Donna Brin, which I feel obliged to share with y’all.
I say “y’all”, because Donna owns a modest little business in South Carolina called bFive40, that’s been making the face masks that I’ve been hawking somewhat shamelessly for the benefit of my foundation. That’s her below, hiding behind a Safety Third face covering her people just made. Well, as you’ll see from the attached note, something very cool has happened to Donna’s little business. Check it out…

Morning Mary!
Our Sewing Apprenticeship is underway! Here’s a link about it.
All this is possible because of Mike and the manufacturing we’re doing for his foundation. It is so meaningful to our community here in Myrtle Beach. This type of job creation means everything with so many restaurants hard hit by COVID. Here’s another link to the recent news coverage.
Please thank Mike again from all of us – his impact here is life changing – and we couldn’t be more grateful and appreciative.
All the best,

I’m sharing this here, because the credit is not mine to take. So far, y’all have purchased enough masks to raise over $220,000.00 for our work-ethic scholarship fund! I’m not given to exclamation points, but this is incredible, and most sincerely appreciated!! But so too, is the impact of your collective support on Donna’s little business.

Four months ago, when I jokingly suggested we offer “Safety Third” masks to benefit mikeroweWORKS, I never imagined the impact on this small business in South Carolina. The above links take a deeper dive, and better explain the sewing apprenticeship program that’s resulted from this fundraiser, its impact on the community, and why I insisted the masks be made in America.

In short, on this Giving Tuesday, I’m grateful to everyone at bFive40, and everyone on this page who has already purchased a mikeroweWORKS mask. For those of you who have not, might I suggest the unparalleled simplicity of stuffing a pair of these masks into a stocking, hung by the chimney with care? Get yours here, and thanks in advance. Modesty and bias aside, it’s for a great cause, and I’d be grateful if you could share the post.

Thanks, y’all, very much.

PS. There were some delivery challenges early on, because Donna had no idea how many of you would order a mikeroweWORKS mask. Neither did I, frankly. Her little shop was literally overwhelmed, and needed a few weeks to retool. Donna wanted me to apologize to anyone who didn’t get their masks in a timely fashion, but assure you than an order placed today would arrive in time for Christmas. (Unless of course, Jeff Bezos or Mark Zuckerberg order one for all their employees, in which case, she can guarantee an Easter delivery. In 2021.)
PPS. As I’ve mentioned in prior posts, I’m not selling masks because I think they’re guaranteed to keep you safe, and even if I did believe that, I would never go so far as to make such a claim. Expert opinions vary, wildly, and it’s hard to know what or whom to believe these days. But, the way I heard it, most Americans – regardless of what they believe – can’t walk into a grocery store or a bank or a laundromat these days, without a piece of cloth wrapped around their face. So, I’m selling masks to people who wish to comply with the law, whether they agree with it or not. And I’m using 100% of the proceeds to help train the next generation of skilled workers. Why? Because the skills gap is going to be with us a lot longer than COVID, and I believe the danger it poses to our country is every bit as clear and present. That’s it. These masks are not meant to be an endorsement of one party or another, or an affirmation of the science, (or lack thereof,) or a subtle commentary on government overreach and the madness of crowds. It’s just a fundraiser for a cause that matters to me. Nothing more.
PPPS. Having said that, the “Safety Third” mask appears to be the most popular among those who wish to comply, albeit grudgingly. A close second, is the mask that reads, “I’m Smiling Under This Thing,” popular among the annoyed, but slightly less subversive. The rest are self-explanatory, and impossible to offend anyone. I think.

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