Calling All Volunteers: The Stranger Project

bya Gabrielle at 2:35 PM

The other night, as I lay in bed trying to fall asleep, I had an idea pop into my head. Gabe having ideas is usually dangerous, I know, but occasionally, they can lead to interesting things – i.e. China. If it hadn’t been for my rather spontaneous idea to go teach English in China, God only knows what the past year of my life would have been like – probably a lot more boring. Anyway, I digress. The idea was this, “Wouldn’t it be great to take pictures of complete strangers, ask them some interesting questions, and make a blog or book out of it?” I mean, stranger blogs and books have been created and become successful, so why couldn’t my idea potentially work?

Well, I’ve decided to put my idea on paper, or rather the internet, and see if anyone would be interested in participating because without willing participants, my idea won’t work that well. And that is where you, dear reader, come into play. Hopefully, you are still actually reading, and you didn’t stop at “the other night”. If so, let me tell you more about my idea.

First things first, my idea needs a title. After much thought, I’ve decided to call it The Stranger Project . Yeah, I know, not as ground breaking as you had hoped for, but I’m sure names like GoDaddy and Google didn’t sound all that fantastic until half of the world thought they were cool.

And what is its purpose? What will people gain by participating? Well, the project will allow people to read and learn a little something about a complete stranger that they never would have met or learned about otherwise. I know I can’t possibly be the only person who scours blogs to read about the lives of strangers all over the world. People intrigue me. I love learning about traditions, experiences, and how people feel about different things.  That’s mostly the reason why I participate in Postcrossing . There has to be at least a handful of people out there who share my interests. Well, I’m hoping there is at least several handfuls, or this won’t work quite as well as I imagined.

And where is it? How do I take part? I’ve decided for the time being to start the project over on blogspot . If everything goes well, I may move it here or create its own personal domain so that Phil can host it on his box. I’m basically using blogspot as a test. If everything does go well, then I’ll be happy. If things turn south, well, worst things have happened to me.

I’m posting about it here in hopes that some of you will venture on over and participate. I know the chances of that are slim, but I figured I should at least ask. Ask and you shall you receive, right? All of the directions/rules are located over at The Stranger Project , but I’ll give you the low down here.

Where to Submit

If you want to participate after reading everything below, you may send your submission to the following email :astrangerproject at gmail.com.

What is Required

1. A picture of yourself.

2. 5 answered questions from the list provided below.  Please provide the questions that you use in your submission, just in case the answer you provide doesn’t make it clear which question you are answering.

3. Your first name.

4. Your age.

The Rules

The rules are rather simple I think. As of now, I only have six rules. I think most individuals can follow them. I don’t typically like rules, but I figured that this sort of project needed them. Here they are.

1. Pictures cannot have more than one “stranger”. i.e. Don’t include your cat, your best friend, or your best friend’s cat with you. One photo. One person.

Pictures may be a profile or full length shot. The more creative the picture is – the happier I am.

2. Pictures cannot contain an ounce of nudity or anything that I deem to be vulgar or inappropriate. i.e. If you have to stop and think whether or not it’s inappropriate, it probably is, and you shouldn’t submit it.

3. Don’t submit pictures of people you don’t know, your friends or famous people. i.e. If you are the person sending me an email, it should be your face in the picture and no one else’s. If for one moment I think the picture is not legit – it will get deleted.

4. Answers must accompany the picture being sent. i.e. If I get answers, but no picture, your submission will not be considered. The same goes for pictures submitted without answers.

5. Don’t include any personal information like your address or phone number in the answers you provide.

6. Last but not least . . . have fun and tell all your friends!

The Questions

Right now I have a total of 22 questions. Of these 22, only 5 need to be answered with your submission . You’ll notice that number 22 is an open question. You may use that one as many times as you like, but just remember rule #2 above. In time, I may add some more questions. If want me to add some questions that you though of, just let me know.

1 . Where were you born and raised?

2 . What is something memorable about your childhood?

3 . What are your life goals?

4 . What are your spiritual beliefs?

5 . What is your occupation and what do you like/dislike about it?

6 . Who do you love and who are they to you?

7 . What are you good at?

8 . What is something you can’t do well?

9 . What is your passion in life?

10 . You know you have to work to live, so if you could pick your work, what would you do?

11 . What is something you want to accomplish before you die?

12 . Has there ever been a book that you’ve read that has changed your life? What was its title and how did it change your life?

13 . Has there ever been a movie that you’ve seen that has changed your life? What was its title and how did it change your life?

14 . Have you ever fought for something you’ve believed in? What did you fight for and what was the outcome?

15 . If you could meet anyone living or dead, who would it be and why?

16 . What is your favorite color and why?

17 . Has anyone ever changed your life? Who were they and what did they do?

18 . Who is your favorite teacher and why?

19 . What is the best vacation you’ve been on and why?

20 . If you could go anywhere in the world, where would it be and why?

21 . What do you despise?

22. Don’t see a question you like? That’s okay, create your own. Just remember Rule #2 when you do so.

And well, that’s it. If you choose to participate, thanks. If not, I understand.  Remember, this project is still in its infancy.  I’ve got to work out all the kinks and make it look really nice.

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