The Ball Drop: Neighborday!

neighbor-day

Photo Source: GOOD

Happy Monday, everyone!  Hope you had a beautiful weekend!

I made several discoveries this weekend:

1)   ACTIVE DISCOVERY: That sometimes trying on new clothes requires the dislocation of several limbs,

2)   INCONVENIENT DISCOVERY: That I am still capable of having boogie-monster-in-the-closet nightmares (shouldn’t have watched Django before bed), and

3)   ACCIDENTAL DISCOVERY: That I have a new favorite magazine!

That last one is what I want to write about today.  I stopped by Barnes & Noble this weekend to pick up some reading material for my students when a magazine I’d never seen before caught my eye tucked on a shelf beneath the customer service desk. (I teach filmmaking to kids on the weekend – they are only 10-13 years old, but they are taller than I am and had blogs first – so they’re kinda the bosses of me.)

GOOD is the magazine and www.good.is is its online presence – a social network of “people who give a damn” (actual tagline).  Both are filled with pages of inspiring, smart material about people and organizations doing good things.  It is basically the print version of the feeling you get when you’re wearing your flannel jammies while watching a Muppets movie and eating a pint of Ben & Jerry’s.  In other words, it is GOOD.

When I cracked open the magazine, I found a fold-out insert advertising “Neighborday” on April 27th for readers to hang on their front doors – a way to grab the attention of the people they share sidewalks with (or, in my case, a paper thin wall) and start a conversation!

Growing up in Wisconsin, I knew what it meant to really have neighbors.  The family next door had two sons, (the youngest was my first kiss, and the oldest teased me about it for 4 years), and were basically an extension of my own.  I miss that – knowing there’s someone just across the way whose door is always open – that means something tangible in an age when many of our “friends” are a digital headcount on Facebook, doesn’t it?

But as an adult in a big city where we live stacked on top of one another, it is easy to be invisible. Despite seeing each other in the hallway fairly often, I only know my neighbor’s name because I sometimes mistakenly get her mail.  So this year, I’m going to make an effort to meet each of my neighbors and to let them know (assuming none seems mass-murdery) that my door is always open (it’ll actually be locked, but I will open it).

How will you celebrate Neighborday?

And here is a little sampler of the great stuff you can read on GOOD’s website:

The Biological Advantage of Being Awestruck – if you click on no other links today, click on this one.  It’ll make you see Monday morning (and life!) in a whole new way.

Why these people have turned their apartment into a part-time restaurant.

Postcards to the Future – early 20th century predictions of 21st century technology.  I particularly love the weather control machine!  If only.

A story about how this guy attempted to draw every building in New York City and why.

The Girl Scouts now have a “Game Developer” badge to get girls excited about technology and science!

Have a great day!  (Oh, and shameless plug – tune in to National Geographic tonight at 9pm EST for the season premiere of my series “Brain Games” – in keeping with today’s theme, it’s SO GOOD!)

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1 Comment

  1. We so enjoyed having you and your family next door. You guys always took care of us. After a long day at the restaurant, we could count on your Mom and Dad to provide relief; either a cocktail, a dip in the pool or just an enjoyable conversation. Also, I knew that anytime one of the boys, sometimes both of them at the same time, went over to your place you guys welcomed them with open arms. You, especially, were a delight; kind of like to daughter I never had. When we look back to those days, we count ourselves lucky to have bought the home we did and have you become part of our family.

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