It does seem as though there’s always something waiting in the wings to keep things in perspective for us all. At a time when every week seems to bring stories of film writers losing their jobs, film critic D.K. Holm finds himself facing an entirely different reality, one that some of us could just as easily be staring down. Word comes from the The Oregonian’s Shawn Levy that Holm is suffering from a very treatable form of esophageal cancer. “Very treatable” is a good thing. But the fact that, like many Americans, he is uninsured, and as such finds himself facing potentially huge hospital and treatment bills in order to fight the disease, is an overwhelming concern. (Holm characterizes his dilemma as “the American nightmare.”)
Holm is a colleague of mine and an e-mail acquaintance; we have corresponded several times since the initiation of this blog, yet despite his Oregon orientation we have never met. His writing is energetic, exasperating and vital, often bearing the marks of a true film curmudgeon (Levy’s word), and his voice is one with which I enjoy agreeing and arguing. You may also be familiar with his work, especially if you pay attention to GreenCine Daily or Kevin Smith’s Quick Stop Entertainment. But even if you’re not, there’s a fund-raiser happening in Portland which you can attend (if you're in the Pacific Northwest), or to which you can make a contribution that will directly alleviate some of the struggles Holm will likely be dealing with in the very near future. It’s called ”Help D.K. Holm”, it’s happening at Portland’s Cinema 21, and it gets under way on Sunday, April 27, at 7:00 p.m. This site will tell you all the details, including an address where you can donate to a fund which will help level the financial mountain Holm will have to climb as he makes his recovery.
I hope if you are so moved to send a little something along to help D.K. (a.k.a. Doug) in his time of need that you will do so.