Virgin Launches Strip2Clothe Charitable Campaign
When we moved last month, my wife and I toted out 43 garbage bags of clothing we culled from our closets to donate to charity—some garments, a little shamefully, with the tags still on them. I’ll let that act serve as rationale enough for not sending Virgin Mobile a video of myself stripping—although Chris Farley’s got nothing on me as far as moves go.
Why am I tormenting you with images of fat men stripping?* Well, it’s the least I can do to bring attention to Virgin Mobile’s Strip2Clothe campaign, a charitable drive to provide homeless kids with nice new duds.
Virgin’s charitable arm, Virgin Unite, is asking people to upload videos of themselves doing a striptease to their website. "Approved" videos will be featured on the site and on YouTube. The ones submitted so far are reasonably wholesome, following Virgin’s guidelines of no nudity, cursing, brand logos, or copyrighted material. For every video submitted and every five people who watch the video, Virgin and partners American Eagle and Levis will donate an article of clothing to homeless kids in the US.
Not raggedy old, out of style now-that-I’m-done-with-it clothing, but new, fashionable articles of clothing to help them better succeed socially at school and/or to find jobs so they can have a better shot at changing their situation. Virgin says there are over one million young people on US streets, many of whom are runaways who were abused or neglected and who are forced to beg, steal, or sell their bodies to survive.
Why stripping? The campaign’s slogan puts it pretty bluntly: "Someone out there needs clothes more than you." Think of it as a kind of walkathon, but with strippers. The videos featured on the site so far are pretty tame—I watched all of them, you know, just to help. The concept seems to have taken off especially in New Jersey and Maryland, where most of the submitters seem to be from, except for Chris here, who’s bringin’ it from the streets of, um, Texas.
Don’t want to participate in the charitable debauchery? Virgin’s cool with that and also has a Text2Clothe option for the shy, the prudish, and the fatty-web-writer type. Text "KARMA" to 68405 and you’ve bought a nice piece of clothing for somebody who really needs it. No karmic pressure.
*You wait. Sugarplums’ days are numbered. What’s a sugarplum, anyway?