Tag Archives: This American Life

Friday Pix: Some Recommended Reading For The Weekend

myers briggs

myers briggsOn occasional Fridays, I point you towards some recommended reading around the blogosphere:

a. As a long-time This American Life fan, I found this piece by Ira Glass about the death of a grown-up friend very moving.

b. A friend sent through a terrific-looking list of books about growth in middle age. I can’t wait to dive in.

c. If you like taking personality tests and especially Myers-Briggs, you will love this piece on the definition of hell for each Myers-Briggs type. Calling all fellow ENTJs!

d. And speaking of middle age, anyone who is a Simon & Garfunkle fan will relish this recent and unexpected reunion of Simon and Garfunkle.

e. If, in contrast, your tastes run more towards The Wire, try prying yourself away from this new game: Where’s Wallace?

f. Finally, in lighter fare, The Buzz Feed has some fun recirculating the response to President Trump’s accidentally tweeting the word “We.”

Have a great weekend!

Image: Myers Briggs by Eric E. Castro via Flickr

 

Friday Pix: Recommended Reading For The Weekend

On occasional Fridays, I point you towards some recommended reading around the blogosphere:

1. If you do one thing this week, please listen to this amazing radio documentary on gang violence in American high schools on Chicago Public Radio’s This American Life. (Hat tip: Lisa Belkin)

2. And speaking of violence, my daughter pointed to me to this video by a couple of young girls called Letter to Lil Wayne.

3. I loved Cecilia’s honest and refreshing take on Valentine’s Day over on her fabulous Only You blog.

4. My husband – along with millions of other people – is currently obsessed with Susan Cain’s best-selling Quiet: The Power of Introverts. Here’s a recent interview Susan did about the book in the famous Politics and Prose bookstore in Washington, D.C.

5. Over on Bookish, check out Elizabeth Gilbert’s dissenting take on Philip Roth’s view of why the writing life isn’t worth it. (Hat tip: Lisa Romeo Writes)

6. Tech Page One gives some useful (and hilarious) advice for those of us trying to decide whether to text, email or just send smoke signals.

7. Finally, just because: the world’s largest library of natural sounds. Oh, c’mon. Admit it. You’ve always wanted to know what  a Wilson’s snipe sounds like… (Hat tip: Brainiac)

 

Have a great weekend, folks!

The Kindness of Strangers: It's A Small World After All

I was struck by an article in The Guardian last week about lost wallets.

The article reported on a recent study in which a company “dropped” 20 wallets containing £10 in cash, a photograph, tickets, receipts, stamps and several business cards in shopping centers, on public transport, in museums, cafes, and on the street in five British cities: London, Leeds, Birmingham, Cardiff and Glasgow. Only two in ten of the wallets were returned to their owners and only around half of those (55%) contained the original sum of money.

The study caught my eye because I was recently one of those lucky 20%. I didn’t exactly lose my wallet, but I did lose an envelope containing 15 pounds (roughly twenty-three dollars). And here’s the kicker: the envelope didn’t have my name and address on it.

All it had was a hand-scribbled note that I’d written to a woman – we’ll call her Kelly – from whom I was buying a (British) Dustbuster before she moved back to America the next day. The note read something along the lines of “To Kelly from Delia. Thanks and Good luck!,” with the cash stuffed inside.

While walking to her house to pick up the Dustbuster, I’d apparently dropped the envelope on the ground along a busy London street. Because I couldn’t find the envelope when I got to her house, I assumed that I’d lost it for good and went to a bank machine to get some cash. But the next day, a stranger contacted me (and Kelly) by email to say that she’d found the envelope and because she knew that Kelly was moving (and vaguely knew that Kelly knew someone called Delia) she figured that it was us.

Can you believe it? I mean, what are the chances that this woman would a. see the envelope on that particular street, which is quite commercial and heavily trafficked b. bother to read my chicken-scratch and c. return it on a hunch? Bear in mind that I’d never met her before and barely knew Kelly either.

She is obviously a very nice person. To whom I am most grateful. (If you’re into this sort of thing you must listen to the This American Life episode entitled The Kindness of Strangers.)

I love this story because it illustrates the humanity in all of us. (OK, in 2/5 of us.) But it’s also a great small-world story. Sometimes I really do believe the whole Six Degrees of Separation thing (even if I’m not connected to Kevin Bacon. Sniff.) A friend of mine just posted on Face Book that her son is about to go off to college and it turns out he’ll be living right down the hall from his best friend in Kindergarten (whom he hasn’t seen in 13 years.) Again, what are the odds?

OK, so now it’s your turn to dish. What’s your best kindness of strangers and/or small world story?

C’mon folks. It’s a light news week. Let er’ rip…

Image: Castanza Wallet by rbieber via Flickr under a Creative Commons license.

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