seventeen people around the US have opted into changePoste
Some of these participants are friends interested in 'being in the orbital of [my] projects.' Others are people I don't know. They were opted in by a mutual contact. Hello friend once removed.
changePoste participants will receive a letter, which experiments with the impact of mail in self-care and community building in a variety of ways. It may prompt action, illicit conversation, provoke shared experiences among strangers.
Those moments are captured anonymously here.
Poste 1: Appreciation
Cooking is something I greatly enjoy from a creative and cathartic perspective. But I often find it more enjoyable when sharing the results with other people. After attending a weekend trip to Mexico in March consisting of artist-led workshops (and amazing food), I was prompted to get back into the swing of hosting dinner parties as a way of bringing together incredible people.
As someone who leans more introverted than extroverted, I prefer 1:1 or small group situations to engage in meaningful conversations, paired with a setting that is conducive for relaxing and opening up. Living in NYC means ample opportunities to meet seriously amazing people. But the flip side is that encounters are typically in passing, and intervals between seeing each other can span months or even years.
I decided to bring together nine people who have all had an impact on my life while in NY at various phases - and show them my appreciation for their friendship, insights, and creativity - by cooking a multi-dish meal of the Mediterranean flavor. Wine and laughter were flowing, and conversational topics covered an extensive range. Six hours of lovely engagement. Couldn’t ask for more.
While I was so caught up in the moment I forgot to take a photograph of the evening, here is one of another meal I made this month for a dear friend, so pretend there are 10 lively people also in the scene!
Maybe because of the election, I thought about "us" versus "them." Then I thought of how scary/interesting it would be to cook a meal for a Trump supporter...
poste 2: Inclusive Discussion
I'm late to posting...but this call towards inclusivity framed my summer in a lot of ways...I (co)hosted many gatherings. A picnic, a BBQ or three, two book clubs, a retreat, and for all of them, I tried to be as intentionally inclusive as possible. It worked. People who wouldn't normally talk together did talk together, and even better, they got to eat yummy food together. I certainly made some mistakes in hosting- too much food, too much money spent, inaccessible locations-- but I know that the conversation in my life is far richer than it was just three months ago. Thanks for sparking and reinforcing the importance of this! (Here's a photo of one of those gatherings...)
THIS POSTE 3: CHANGE
Credit where credit's due
These places, projects and people have in one way or another influenced this project.