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The Short Fuse needs your help

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We interrupt our regular programming for something worth your time.

We don't have our hands out very often, but we're making an exception
We don't have our hands out very often, but we're making an exception
Jan Kruger/Getty Images

SPOILER ALERT: This is an entirely non-Arsenal post. If non-Arsenal things don't interest you, we apologize, but we feel that this is important enough to deviate from the normal Arsenal content we bring you (most) every day. It's something that a few of us writers wanted to do on behalf of a friend of ours that we're extremely fortunate to have.

This friend of ours has gone to bat for us many times in the past -- often in the face of potential scrutiny from his bosses -- and has handed over and placed in us his trust and faith when others would not have done the same. He's been an inspiration for us, a great sounding board for ideas and opinions, and above all, he's a kind-spirited, caring human being who sees the best in every person he meets and interacts with.

Right about now, you're asking yourself "Self, why should I care?" Well, you should care because this friend of ours is friend of yours, as well. He keeps this blog running and operating on a daily basis. And, after sacrificing his time and energy to keep this ship we frequent many times a day afloat for pennies on the hour, our esteemed blog owner Thomas needs a bit of help in a tough situation.

When rock climbing a little over a month ago, Thomas heard what he thought was a foothold breaking off the wall. It turned out to be his left humerus snapping in two. After the hospital stay, surgery, post-surgery care and treatment, the bills have quickly piled up and have now become nearly insurmountable. That's where we come in, and where we, for the first time in our blog's history, have our hat in our hands to help out a common friend in need.

All of our awesome readers - that's you! - don't pay a thing for the content provided here. Which is how we've always wanted it to be. But now, we all have a great chance for you to show your appreciation to Thomas for all the work he's done and continues to do for TSF, by helping him tunnel out from under a ridiculous, life-alteringly bad pile of unplanned medical debt.

The goal we've set for this fundraiser is $5,000. We have, selfishly speaking, one of the best communities on SB Nation, if we do say so ourselves. If we can motivate all of you fantastic, attractive, intelligent, and wonderful readers to donate even a few bucks each to help out the guy who runs the blog that provides you the enjoyment, thought, and wisdom derived from our content and other fellow Arsenal fans, that would mean the absolute world to us. I'm sure Thomas would certainly agree, as well.

Like most places that ask for money, your donation will not go unrewarded. We don't have much in the way of tangible goods to give, but we do have the ability to give you something. So! While any amount you donate, from $5 on up, is greatly appreciated and will be happily received:

- If you give $20, you'll get a personal shoutout/thankyou on TSF social media, including the official site Twitter and FB, and the twitters of at least a couple of the individual writers
- If you give $100, you'll get to be a TSF author*! Choose from the following topics:
- Arsenal's biggest current playing need and who can fill it
- Who should be Arsenal's next coach and why
- Should Arsenal join the Real Madrid/Barcelona/City/Chelsea arms race?
- Mesut Ozil: An Appreciation
- My all-time favorite Arsenal player/game/goal/season (pick any one)
- If you give $500, you can write 1000 words on whatever Arsenal-related topic you want!**

If more than five people donate at the $100 level, we'll come up with more topics!

*Subject to very light editorial control - we won't change content, but reserve the right to fix spelling/punctuation/grammar as needed. While we don't plan on using it, we also reserve the right to tell you to start over if the piece you submit falls afoul of our usual posting guidelines (which will be made available to you).

**following TSF's site rules and the above-referenced editorial controls

We hope this won't be a reoccurring thing around here - I think Thomas has already fashioned a lovely bubble in which to live out the rest of his life free from fear. Since us asking you all for money won't be a thing we do very often, we'd be eternally grateful and extremely appreciative of your assistance, at whatever level you wish to provide said assistance.

We've set up a YouCaring site to collect donations, and that site is right here.

Transparency and full disclosure: Thomas didn't come up with this idea. He was getting ready to drain what money he had in his 401K to help pay for this. He wasn't going to skip out on the bills, through non-payment or bankruptcy. So we thought that instead of forcing him to postpone his retirement until he was 165 years old and live on cat food in the meantime, we'd try to help out as much as we could.