In closed threads, behind the scenes, here at DK, I’ve been reporting on the difficulties of trying to do a ‘zine’ here in Vietnam, or anywhere really. Zines are for going against the normal way of everything: they’re not overly designed, or overly polished, and the ideas within at least for me, in my way of making them, are about standing for a thing that you care about. That means having something you really love.
This is the problem: most people don’t know what they really love.
They go around and around and they try to grab at things.
But what about the things they love?
I know this is not a blog about personal development; I’ve longago abandoned that path of ‘motivational speaker’ even though I accidentally did a TEDx talk about how ‘There’s Not That Much Time Left’, back in 2012.
Pretty funny, hindsight, hey.
Here is the video.
Now, if you are reading this, and you have heard me [deleted]… ‘look at me’ generation of selfie-takers and how irritating that is to me, well….. yeah. I did this.
This was 2012, so before the internet got all crazy and the Society of the Spectacle hijacked real life the way it has today. I guess, yeah. It was cool to do it. Show up, as me. Say what I wanted to share.
It helped me reach a few people, connect deeply. That, to me, was always the goal of everything I made. Writing articles for my two newspaper jobs, for example. Or designing things for wonderful clients over the years I was in Seattle, for another example.
I’m coming back to the internet, now.
I’m doing more things online.
If you got the invites from me today, from the platforms, well.
More is on the way.
Hello Latvia. Hello Finland. Hello Ireland, and my friends who hit ‘connect’ in those places. I appreciate that, so much. Also: Cambodia, Australia, Denmark…. Invites have gone around the world. To Germany. To so many people whose paths have crossed with my own.
People who I find highly talented and creative and resourceful and insightful and whose art inspired me and influenced me.
It’s amazing doing this kind of very preferential networking, today. I used to be way different, when I was younger. Anybody was fine, to ‘connect’ with. Not anymore. I’m highly discerning. And I think it’s that thing that helps me know which side of the line I want to categorize an old contact as that makes me who I am. I know what I love.
I love improvising and conversing with people who shine.
They, together, have been my ‘neighborhood,’ a world neighborhood, from whose carefully attended lectureships have taught me a universe of ways of building bridges.
I’m ready to apply now what I have learned from ambling the world, 27 countries, countless hundreds of miles of walking around. I’m not religious, but doesn’t it seem like one hell of a quest? Finding myself, or whatever, isn’t what it was about. It was about. finding… us.
The us that is between us.
‘The It Between I and Thou’
My old friend MA in Seattle had taught me about M. Buber’s idea of this thing, ‘the it between I and thou.’
What’s between you and me is hugely important; it’s a thing. It’s not a thing in capitalist places but here in Vietnam I feel it more deeply each day, the importance of a unity of ‘us.’ A chúng ta kind of vibe, you know? Yes I have to learn Vietnamese. I have to. What the hell else can I do to be understood, and communicate?
Deeply, not superficially.
The following are a few of the S P A C E issues we made at Atelier S P A C E // HCM (HT those many people who generously donated USD$800 to that effort! I’ve updated our crowdfunding page to reflect new goals, for Outer S P A C E).
I want to make an issue of S P A C E available to anyone who wants to read it. It’s just too good not to share. It’s called ‘Humanity’. The author is my good friend Michael Bridgett, Jr. and the photographer is another dear friend, Nils don Sihvola. Both are part of my international community and help me think, write, and most importantly… feel.
Feel my feelings.
Want the issue? Email me.Today I feel free. I’m proud to be back on the internet again. And reconnect with my old colleagues, friends, clients, and associates in a new United States of America. Gosh, you know. There’s so much work to do.
Let’s get started.
One designful moment, at. A. Time.
HT JE, CS. So cool to message today! Surprised? Me, too.
Photo of Dipika Kohli by OMNI Studiophotos, Durham NC 2012