Case in point, I was walking down the street last night when I saw this plastered on the wall outside of Mideci Neapolitan Pizza Company. It’s an art piece of sorts that was created by Ryan V. Brennan (or so the sign states). As you can see, it has a silhouette of two hands, a right and a left. Above the left it states, “Place your hand here.” And on the right, “Have stranger place hand here.” And written between the two are the words, “Remove hands when no longer strangers.” What a brilliant concept, and a marvelous way to start a conversation with someone, don’t you think?
Midici If you want to visit this place, you can find Midici Neapolitan Pizza Co. here.
I remember holding hands with a girl at summer camp. Her name was Christy Garrett, a cute strawberry blonde who had the lightest freckles that dappled her nose and cheeks. She was a year older than me. We spent the first week looking at each other from across the quad whenever we lined up to raise or lower the flag. We smiled whenever we passed each other. And then one day, perhaps at the insistence of our peers, we found ourselves standing next to each other in line by the boat house. I don’t know how it happened, but there was something between us that pulled like a magnet to steel. And our hands made the connection. From there we began to talk. It wouldn’t be right to tell you the rest of the story, but suffice it to say, she was also my first kiss.
Holding hands with a stranger is a pretty strange thing. But powerful to say the least. I recall reading a story in the last few months of an older woman who held the hand of a nervous traveler as the airplane they were on began to experience severe turbulence. That exchange was not only calming for both of them, but it also began a caring relationship that continued long after they safely landed and went on their way. Today, they continue to have weekly phone conversations, and have met each other’s families.
Place your hand on a wall. And have someone you don’t know place there hand next to yours. Is that something you would do? If so, how close would you be? How would you get that person to stop and join you? What would you say, or how would you begin the conversation? What would be your intention, or what would you like to gain from that experience? Too many of us are too afraid to even try, and it makes me wonder what we might be missing out on.
I wanted to give it a try, but my family objected. They were hungry and wanted to go get supper. But now that I know it’s there, I might just have to sneak down the street and give it a try. I’ve got a lot to say, and a lot to learn.
An ex-copywriter turned punk rock pastor and peacemaker who dedicates his life to making the world a better place for all humanity.
"that they all might be one" ~John 17:21
“Prius vita quam doctrina.”
~ St. Thomas Aquinas (1225–1274)
* “Life is more important than doctrine.”