candy from a stranger

ImageWould you take candy from a stranger?  No?  Well, what about on Halloween?  Then I bet you would.  Even the parental warning to ‘never take candy from a stranger’ has an exception to the rule.

I made edible street art out of candy the other day, and I’m hoping that my neighbors ate the entire wall over the past 48 hours.  The project made me wonder if my neighbors would hesitate before taking candy from a stranger.  Maybe you think they should refrain altogether, but, dear reader, I don’t.  If you’ll take candy from a stranger on Halloween, you can eat a street mural made of gumdrops and starbursts.

Today, I’m setting out to dispel the notion that we shouldn’t accept candy from a stranger.  Why, you ask?  It’s all about possibility.  I believe that a stranger is more likely to give you a sweet treat than something deadly.  Don’t you agree? I suppose there is no guarantee, but isn’t that just indicative of life itself?
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I believe we need to seek out the unexpected. Make room for whimsy, if you will.  We take a chance each time we interact with a stranger (we can’t be sure of their motives or temperament ), but we also open ourselves up to the possibility that they make us laugh, share a great story, or, potentially, become a friend.

“I used to feel so alone in the city. All those gazillions of people and then me, on the outside. Because how do you meet a new person? I was very stunned by this for many years. And then I realized, you just say, “Hi.” They may ignore you. Or you may marry them. And that possibility is worth that one word.” — Augusten Burroughs

I believe that taking risks and making experiments allow you to life a creative life.  Risks backfire, best intentions fail, and we don’t always achieve what we strive for.  But the negative outcomes make the best stories.   And as for me, I would rather be a dazzling failure than sitting in my rocking chair wishing I had taken chances.  For me, the hope or possibility that the risks are worth the reward is enough to take the leap of faith.

When the stakes are high, the challenge is great, and it’s easy to shy away from the opportunity.  But what then? All is lost.  You might seek and fail, but if you don’t seek, you will fail without doubt. And so, dear reader, I advise you take a risk today.  Perhaps start by taking candy from a stranger.  If strangers aren’t handing out candy, then find another risk – something closer to your heart, and see where it leads you.
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The best part of this random act of happiness wasn’t the candy or the laugher, it was working with Justina Louise.  Justina is an ah-may-zing wedding photographer in the Twin Cities, and she took the day off work to be silly with me.  Check out her work, and say hello — she’s lovely!