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I am once again reminded that I am not in love with my fellow humans. I know that it is not the most politically correct thing to say, but people have some sort of weird need to feel sorry for themselves and from the videos on the Center for Digital Storytelling website pity stories abound. Why is it that everyone has a story to tell, and it is always about homelessness, cancer, death of loved ones…in a word tragedy.

I have never had a tolerance for this sort of thing, all of those heartwarming stories of the Olympic athletes…blah.

Ok, so enough of my dislike of my fellow man. I really liked the SL video “Life on Life” , it did have a bit of a “feel good- Human interest” thing happening, but it was more reflective than a woe is me thing.

I would like to see (maybe this has already happened) digital story telling– to tell actual stories. I mean like ancient stories, passed down from generation to generation …entertainment as it was hundreds, or thousands of years ago before television or mass printing of books. In my head I am seeing the old “Reading Rainbow” show, anyone remember that? Only with the digital aspect, pictures and story that go together on your computer.

Grandmothers and grandfathers can record stories that they remember from childhood or even adulthood for the next generations. But not only tragic things, happy stories of how parents met, or what school was like for them, what they did for a living…I guess the problem is getting folks to sit down and tell the stories.
this story tells about the issues with getting the information before it is too late…and gets a little carried away with the sadness of not getting around to asking or helping family members record the stories. I side with the first man’s father, who said ” I do not tell stories, I make conversation”. But his son never just sat down with the man and asked him questions to get the “story” er, conversation started? he left him alone with a tape recorder and expected him to talk to it? Weird.

But I say, instead of being sad about not having your father digitally collect the stories, begin with yourself…chances are you remember the stories told by your parents (probably better than they do) I know I have a million “Stu stories” as my family call them (my father passed in 1997, but we tell his stories all the time). Instead of being heartbroken that you ran out of time seize the day and make a digital story of your own- Happy and positive instead of sad and weepy.

I might be rambling now, but I see this digital storytelling as so much more than quasi personal therapy, it can be informative about the world, not just as one person sees it. Travel logs of trips you have taken, people you have met, events that not everyone could attend, moments in a child’s life that can be handed to them on graduation. Bedtime stories for when you (as a parent) are away on a business trip. Most of us know that we almost never read the actual words in the book to young children, my grandfather used to make up his own story to go along with the pictures to the “Pokey Little Puppy” to this day I have no idea what the actual story is, but I like mine better 😉 Our own photo collections with a narrative to go along so others know what the pictures are of and about.

Here’s to the future!


Flickr Photos