Tuesday, November 25, 2008

What's my secret?

That was the name of one of the first TV game shows back in the day. Panelists asked questions of the guest with the secret and obtained clues until they could ascertain what usually turned out to be an unusual occupation. Pretty tame for those of us dwelling in the 21st century -- none of the contestants ever said his secret was being a serial killer; none of the women ever admitted to being an "escort."

It is often said in self-help circles that one is only as sick as one's secrets. A few years back, a man named Frank Warren had an idea for an art exhibit. He distributed 3000 post cards, leaving them in books, on park benches and in other public places inviting strangers to share a secret; something that was true and something they'd never told anyone else before. He got about 100 cards back and used them for his art exhibit.

Surprisingly to Frank the cards kept arriving, often at the rate of about 200 per week. In 2005 Frank created a blog to showcase his 20 picks for the week, posting the new batch each Sunday. I learned of this only last week; perhaps many of you have already visited http://postsecret.blogspot.com/. If you haven't, stop by. The cards are an amazing insight into the secrets people keep. And many of them are quite artsy which I personally love to see. Some are amusing, some will cause you to laugh out loud and some are downright tragic. Here's one I kind of like:

Theoretically it is supposed that if one writes down one's secret on a card and sends it off in the mail it is no longer a secret and the writer is released of its burden. Maybe we all have some flotsam and jetsam to unload before we go into yet another new year.


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