I have lived in several states and I have felt that New Jersey (believe it or not folks) was generally the most friendly. Pennsylvania neighbors are a bit standoffish (again this is a generalization). I think, though, that we need to overlook whatever that is that makes people that way - standoffish -- and just offer them love. I'm not saying I'm going to go around hugging people; I am a born introvert with my own walls up. But I am saying that I am going to make more of an effort to remember that behind those walls are people, and the nature of being a person is just hard. I want to be more empathetic with people and reach out a bit more, and I mean a bit, because reaching out to people is not my forte.
At least online I can more easily do so. I made a stranger feel good today and I've been seeing his posts on Twitter enough to know he's a genuine guy who has been grieving the death of his mother for the past year. He's a Bates Motel Superfan, I think. I imagine I actually might have touched him and made him not feel so alone in this world, because I introduced myself as a stranger, but as a fellow traveler in life who cares. This is a terrible time for me as I am disappearing, and it means so much to me that I might be able to give an honest warm and fuzzy to some guy who lives somewhere and who I think is often sad.
This year is so sad -- school shootings, terrible president, my little Voldemort (illness), the death of a child I knew. I've got to rise up softly here and meet all this pain by spreading love. I'm going to start by using the same tool the terrible president uses for all his selfish schemes; that seems right. It will be my tiny positive drops in the bucket against his massive ocean of petty misery. Consider it David and Goliath.