This Is How We Should Make New Friends

How should we make new friends?

I am a shy individual who masks it with bravado and a quip. New social situations makes my underpants an uncomfortable shade of brown. But it’s good to make connections with new people. Makes the village more welcoming and hospitable.

Here’s how I propose to do it: Everyone needs to carry a novel.

In a new social situation the novel is a means of beginning a conversation. We can talk about the book, what we liked, didn’t like, read aloud our favourite passages.

And when we’re finished, we can swap the book with the person we are talking with, read it and return it when done, or pass it on to the next new person we meet.

And it would be even better if it’s our own story in the book we give away. That way we must trust the other person to treat our book with respect and kindness.

And there should be blank pages for the new person to add in how we met, what we talked about, what the day was like. Then we can pass it on, receive the new person’s book and add our own details. If we happen to cross paths again, we can catchup on what has happened.

Imagine all the people’s stories we could read.

This is how we should make new friends. What do you reckon?



12 responses to “This Is How We Should Make New Friends

  1. And having a live online version that our international villagers can drop by and say hi would be the perfect cherry on top!

  2. I could totally get with this program, if I’ve finished with the book 😛

  3. Addendum: if books aren’t your thing, why not give someone a CD, a mixtape, a piece of art or a DVD? The possibilities are endless.

  4. Imagine baring your soul by sharing “your story” with everyone you meet. I reckon it just may make the world a kinder place. I’m all for getting rid of the many pretenses we knowingly and unknowingly “put out there”. Keep writing, Adam. As a fellow educator, you inspire me. As a fellow writer, you encourage me. As a fellow inhabitant in this life, you make me ponder. Thank you

    • Thanks for the kind words, Karen.
      Beyond the pretences, it is the respect of another human being, their life and their story, that will make the world a kinder place, summed up in the second greatest commandment, “Love thy neighbour as thyself.”

  5. A child fulfils the same purpose, though a novel is certainly easier to carry. Having an unusual name is guaranteed to open a conversation – and even easier to carry.

  6. Brilliant idea. Just like band t-shirts, physically carrying novels can be a comforting friend-flag.

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