Taking random acts of kindness to the next level
Here is a wonderful article about a man named Ferdinando Buscema. Buscema is a magical experience designer. He helps people make every day experiences become magical.
I started reading this article because It sounded way cool that this job description even existed, but when it mentioned Improv Everywhere (who I’ve written about before in the context of kindness) and their romantic comedy cab I knew I was in for a treat.
I also learned a spectacular new word. Liminal. Being in advertising, I am of course familiar with the word subliminal, but liminal is equally as interesting a word. It means the quality of ambiguity or disorientation that occurs in the transition from the unfamiliar to the familiar. Like extreme awe. Or the way awe is experienced as a child (I’m paraphrasing here, but who wouldn’t want to experience this in our MyAlfred world where it seems a startup is born every day to make our lives simpler easier – quel horror – more predictable.
Anyway, scroll down to the end of this article to discover this exciting twist on the pay-it-forward concept:
Lately, Buscema has been conducting some magical experiments in mall parking lots. He’ll take a 50 Euro bill and place it, along with a handwritten note, under the windshield wiper of a random, humble-looking car. (“The flavor of the note,” says Buscema, “is like: ‘Someone is caring for you; you have a hidden support.’”)
Note placed, he waits. Invariably, when the driver returns, their reaction is to be suspicious, then astounded, at the discovery of the anonymous gift.
“You can make someone’s day with even $10,” says Buscema. “But it’s not the amount of money that gets the job done—it’s the message.”
When he commits random acts of kindness, he is “creating an experience that will keep people’s minds spinning for some time, I like to think, in a fertile way. And that’s how I play my game.”
For more on Buscema, check out his website here: http://www.ferdinando.biz And his collaborator, Mariono Tomatis’ website: http://www.marianotomatis.it/
Tomatis’ job description is Wonder Injector!
If you are feeling brave, they both have a book out called L’arte di stupire, but currently it’s only published in Italian.
Via Atlas Obscura. Photo by David Blackwell.