Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Oh, Brother: Feel Good Pap in Lieu of Black Friday: The 'National Day of Listening'

Can you hear me now?

Tired of all that crass commercialism on the day after Thanksgiving when the masses rush to the malls? Well, thanks to the nice folks at NPR, after a day spent listening to your relatives while you stuff your piehole, you can now spend yet another day listening to your relatives.
After 25 years of marriage, there are still too many stories Gail Ostrow and her husband haven't shared.

She hasn't heard the whole truth of what it was like in Vietnam. Or why, after the war, he retreated to 240 acres in Wisconsin to live without electricity and water. Or how it has felt not being the one to raise his son.

"This is the man that I have lived with and loved and slept next to and been through some really great adventures and been through some really hard times together," the 64-year-old college professor said. "But there hasn't been a lot of talking."
Hey, professor, you ever think maybe he likes it that way?

I don't know about you, but I prefer to lay out on the recliner and watch some football on Friday after Thanksgiving, but maybe I'm weird. Sure, relatives are all about, and I'll spend time speaking with and listening to them, but I don't need a day to recognize it.
"There are things that I want to know about him that don't come up in conversation."

So on the day after Thanksgiving, Ostrow will sit down with her husband at their Bridgeport, Conn., home to interview him and record his words — joining thousands of people nationwide who are participating in the National Day of Listening.

The first question to him should be "what on God's earth are we doing living in Bridgeport?!"

I guess it's particularly timely this year with all the gloom, doom, and tales of economic woe. Maybe we can sit around listening to everyone whining.

Launched by oral-history organization StoryCorps and scheduled for a day when families are more often dashing to take advantage of Black Friday sales, the event seeks to give people a reason to sit down with friends and family and have intimate conversations that can be preserved as heirlooms.
Uh, what prevents anyone from having an intimate coversation the other 364 days of the year? Am I missing something here?

No comments: