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An off-topic post with a purpose: Helping Haiti

When I created this blog, I wrote the slogan as such: "A blog on the Miami Heat, life." I figured such a phrasing would allow me and those who contribute to delve into other topics from time to time. And I figure there's no better time to test that out than today. I'm sure most - if not all - of you are aware that the nation of Haiti was rocked yesterday afternoon by a magnitude 7.0 earthquake, centered 10 miles southwest of the capital city of Port-au-Prince. In any country, such an event would be a catastrophe. In a nation like Haiti, already reeling from four hurricane strikes in 2008, not to mention a perpetually unstable government and overwhelming poverty not known in the rest of the Western Hemisphere, it would be the Worst Case Scenario. And that's what it is. Communications with the island have been virtually cut off. Casualties and fatalities are unknown. Even the nation's Presidential Palace has been reduced to ruins: Haiti's Presidential Palace So why do I bring this up? Because there's a bit more of a connection on this particular blog to Haiti than most basketball blogs. Miami may be the American city most closely identified with Haitian culture, not only for it's proximity to the Caribbean island, but for the hundreds of thousands who reside in and around the Magic City. I myself worked a few months in an area referred to as Little Haiti. I happen to know a few people who come from the island and can't imagine what they're going through. So what's the reason for writing this post, besides sharing news you already know? For no reason other than to solicit funds. Don't send them to me, of course. There are plenty of places for you to call or e-mail and donate that way. CLICK HERE for some options. If you don't feel like clicking through, just text YELE to 501 501 to donate $5 to Wyclef Jean's well-regarded YeleHaiti charity. Or you can text HAITI to 90999 to donate $10 to the American Red Cross' efforts in the country. And if you live locally, check out THIS LINK for some options in or close to Miami-Dade County. I don't know if this will do any good. But I know it's better than nothing. This officially ends the radio silence from here over the last couple of days; a game preview will come later today. But seriously, if you can, give. Thanks.