Thursday, February 19, 2009


Bet you've never stopped to think about it:

Who are you?

I often like to use the line, "do you have any idea who I think I am?" in a joking matter, but truly: who do I think I am?

In 25 words or less, can you tell someone who you are? Can you do it in 25 pages or less? Does it get easier or more difficult with more words?

I once had to write a short autobiographical paragraph. This is when I began thinking about how to describe myself. If I began, "I am" -- then the question is: I am what?
I am 58. But when you hear it, you will hear that through the filter of what "58" means to you, and I tell you this through the filter of what "58" means to me and the sentence tells us nothing except I decided to tell you my age, which in and of itself, gives you a little information.

If I say, "I am a woman," or "a rabbi," or "spiritual" -- these are all labels that we understand differently. Labels are for jelly jars. (I first heard Rabbi Barbara Aiello say this,

For me, the best way to tell you about me, is to tell you things I love and things I don't. For example, I love dogs, rainy days, wild winds, time in my study, watching movies in bed with my beloved, sleeping with dogs (which I can't do if I want to watch movies in bed with my beloved.) I hate crowds, loud events, mean spirited people, complainers. Now, do you begin to get a feeling about me?

My son posted 25 sentences about himself on Facebook. I am not sure why. And if I ask, he will suggest that I am "Facebook Stalking" -- to which I would reply, isn't that what FB is, a sort of voyeuristic stalking site? He said such things as this about himself:

1. I am an assistant pastry chef with aspirations to become a baker.
6. When I was four, I fell down a flight of concrete stairs. I was inside a sleeping bag at the time.
9. The only thing I don’t enjoy eating is licorice.
10. One of my goals in life is to travel the world and eat.
14. I traveled to Paris for a total of 3 days.
17. I like my coffee black
18. I have never lived in the same house for more than a year.
20. The potato is my single favorite food.
21. I am an avid film buff.
24. Right now, I have a greater variety of tea than food in my apartment.

I don't know why, but my favorite statement he made is #24. This one resonates with me the most in knowing him.

What 25 things would you write about yourself?


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