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Long Island

Got a complaint? Not today

Nearly 250 people vowed Sunday to quiet their

Nearly 250 people vowed Sunday to quiet their gripes about everything from the weather and politics to restaurant service for 24 hours in the first-ever No Complaints Day Challenge -- Long Island. Photo Credit: Joe Kirin

Nearly 250 people vowed Sunday to quiet their gripes for 24 hours in the first-ever No Complaints Day Challenge -- Long Island.

Joanne Amante of Kings Park started the challenge after hearing about the original event launched in a Chicago suburb.

"We complain about [President Barack] Obama. We complain about health care. We complain about the weather. We complain about our jobs, our kids," said Amante, 53. "I'm very into positivity . . . and I said, 'Wow, this [event] is a very good thing.' "

The rules, posted on Facebook, are simple: From 12 a.m. Sundayto 12 a.m. Monday participants must not complain. If they fail, Amante said, "just acknowledge it, dust yourself off and keep playing."

Joe Kirin, 55, of Lyons, Illinois, came up with the challenge after noticing Facebook users seemed to complain a lot.

"What would happen if one day, if people complaining wasn't an option?" he asked. That question led him to think about his mother, Marion Kirin, 81, who died in April after lung complications and a virus. Through it all, Kirin said, she never complained.

On Aug. 12 -- Marion Kirin's birthday -- more than 5,000 people worldwide participated in the challenge, he said.

For Bob Matedero, 75, of Commack, the challenge was a chance to show gratitude. "If you take what's around you and be thankful for it . . . you'll find time for less time to complain."

Matedero, a retired Suffolk police detective, occasionally grumbles about the cold and missing his Florida condo, but said he finds "peace of mind" through his Catholic faith and allowing extra travel time.

Gina Rapp, 49, of Elmont a special-education teacher, said her motto is, "Just do it."

Rapp frequently travels an hour to see her mother in hospice and accompanies her daughter, 14, to the hospital to treat a brain condition. Rapp said she uses a technique whenever a complaint feels imminent: "Close your mouth, count to three, take a deep breath."

Amante's daughter Carolyn Baccarella, 23, who lives in Plainsboro, New Jersey, and has groused about her college psychology tests, said she wants to continue her pledge: "It really can change the world . . . when we take a step back, and think about what we're complaining about."


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