FOUR THINGS TO ASK A STRANGER (almost a parody)

Welcome to Mary Anne Radmacher's blog.

One way to get to know a person you've just met is to ask them to tell you about their favorite friends. It's said that a person essentially becomes an aggregate of the five people with whom they spend the most time.

There's another telling question to ask a stranger. It's all about a book.

1) Is there one book that you have re-read and will read again (and again)?
2) What is the most recent book that you've read and what stands out to you most?
3) What is the title of a book you recommend most often to friends?
4) What was the last book you read that made you so sad when it came to the end? (Because you wanted to keep on reading, not because the ending was sad!).

If the person you are just getting to know has never re-read a book, can't remember what stood out from the last book they read, doesn't recommend books to friends and has never felt sad to stop reading an excellent book...

I suggest that you stop conversing with them. And, perhaps, run. Kidding (not kidding). Perhaps you might consider striking up a conversation with someone else that you might want to get to know. AND start THAT conversation off by recommending a book you've recently read...

Thursday, October 31, 2013

I see. You.

The back says, “Distance cannot matter between us...for I see you...over miles, through time, in the stuff of life.” This card in included (in a quantity of 5) in the November Bundle.

When I was a child I stomped when I was ignored.  I stomped and said, “I am right HERE!”  I found it very disrespectful that adults treated me, as a single digit child, as if I were not present.  I did not tolerate adults talking about me instead of to me.  They called me querulous.  Or, at least, phrases that are summed up in that single word.

In nearly every grade when a teacher asked, “Who helped you write this?” I was incensed that they questioned my originality.  When a professional author publicly doubted that I had just presented a “first draft,” I stomped again.

I AM RIGHT HERE. 

Yesterday, while speaking to my brother who is in the final stages of brain cancer, after a long pause in a conversation that had been going swimmingly, he asked, “Who is this? What is your relationship to me?”

There was no stomping.  I know that the ravages of a growing tumor in his brain is his story to tell.  And being his sister, “unseen” is part of my story.  I. Am. Here. For. You. Whether you know I am your sister, or not. I am witness to your condition.  I am witness
to you whether or not you can be witness to me. 

The basis of my teaching on Personal Symbol presumes that virtually every thing we do is an action taken to represent ourselves, to be seen, authentically.  The fact that we live in a culture of “celebrity” underscores the fundamental compulsion to notice and be noticed. 

So as I prepare  and gather artful, meaningful elements to present to those who notice for my November Bundle, I am motivated by the impulse to see and be seen.  Almost everything in this Bundle reflects this concept. 

I am right here.  And I see. You. 

Thank you for seeing me.

Love, Mary Anne Radmacher

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