Drop in a coat

Oct 5, 2012 By Steven R. Peck

The Coats for Kids and Coats for Folks boxes around town need filling

We offer a good word for the annual Kiwanis Coats for Kids, or Coats for Folks, project now under way.

The first coat or two have been deposited in the big box we've placed in The Ranger lobby. It, and others like it all over town, need to be filled up.

Seeing a person outside in the cold without a proper coat is unnerving. It can generate a feeling of desperation in those who see it, probably because the notion is so immediately transferable to any one of us in a way that some other human troubles might not be.

We might not immediately understand the suffering of a person with an injury or an illness. Until you've hammered your thumb or had stitches in your knee, you don't know the feeling. If you've never struggled through a money problem, or anxiety at work, or an academic crisis, then they might seem the problems of "other people."

But everyone knows what it's like to be too cold. If there truly is something you wouldn't wish on your worst enemy, suffering through a cold winter, a cold day, even a cold hour without protection might be one of them.

Here's something else we all can identify with: An old coat hanging in the closet. If you haven't checked lately, do it again. Chances are there is a coat there that no one uses anymore but still is perfectly good. That's probably why you haven't thrown it out.

If that forgotten coat does exist, do something better with it than discarding it or ignoring it. It is doing no good for anybody where it is. Find one of the big Kiwanis Coats for Kids or Coats for Folks boxes around town and drop it in.

That's all it takes. No permission needed, no appointment, no paperwork. Just a willingness to help.

There are many boxes in town, including one here at The Ranger office, 421 E. Main St. in Riverton. What we put in those boxes over the next few weeks will take the edge off our Wyoming winter for as many people as there are coats deposited. And if you can put a pair of gloves or a warm hat into the pockets, so much the better.

Our weather changed suddenly this week. The season doesn't lie. Winter is unavoidable, relentless and certain. And Wyoming is no place to be without a decent coat.

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