At a time when politics is polarized, conversation is via text, families are dispersed, and people live alone longer, Americans are at times lonely & without connections. The challenge is how to create connection opportunities. Amalgamated Amalgamations is an interactive community of people with ideas, experiences, and thoughts on creating and building connections with family, friends, and even strangers.Continue reading “Our Vision”
I love our backyard! I have created an oasis that provides me multiple levels for entertaining and hosting, but because it is such a sanctuary when we are back there, no one knows we are there.
To combat the isolation of our own making, we have moved 2 chairs out to our front lawn and sometimes we will sit out there. Continue reading “Creating Opportunities to Say “Hello!””
Music may be the food of love, but it is also a universal way to connect with others.
Music is a great way to find like minded people in your area. There is plenty of research linking making music with improved cognition, connection between the hemispheres of the brain, and language processing, but music may help us read emotions in sounds and in each other. Whether you want to make music or just listen to it, here are some ways that music can help connect us.
Our family has had success bringing people together around specific events. There are times when it makes sense to bring either friends or new acquaintances together to either celebrate or even create a community. Here are just two simple opportunities that have worked for us.
Potluck dinners scale. More people showing up = more food. Sharing food and conversation is the keystone tribal/family activity.
I started organizing potlucks my last few years in college. I’d make a huge pot of beans for veggie burritos. The only rule: no one could take leftovers home. We’d eat for the rest of the week.
Simplest: Anarchist Potluck
- Set a day, time, and location.
- Invite people.
- Refuse to offer suggestions or coordinate what folks bring.
- If everyone brings salad, order pizza.
Problem solving with friends
Planning a gathering can seem daunting. A potluck leans heavily on the ‘luck’ and that is good, but organizers can still worry about what is in the pot or on the table.
Some challenges can be avoided through good planning. We don’t want to make the organizing so tight that by the time the event arrives, the organizer is exhausted of it, waiting for it to be over. But some tools can help to know who is showing up, what they are expecting, and whether they are bringing anything to the gathering.
It’s a great way to build community. In addition, it has significant health benefits to everyone that joins in:
- The single best thing for brain health is exercise.
- The second best thing is social interaction.
- Being out in nature provides another boost.
The smart move is to combine them all.
Why does this website exist?
I’ve always been interested in things that strengthen the community. That ranges from political organizing in my 20s (aimed at providing stable housing and keeping neighborhoods working as a communities) on to ongoing efforts to get folks together for potlucks, hikes, dance parties, family reunions and the like.
Recently I noticed that a variety of political and social commentators have names a strong network of friends as a key antidote to political craziness, social media manipulation, and even some negative health effects.
I agree and have argued the same. I’ve thought I’ve trying to add what I’ve learned to the pot.
What finally tipped this this website from concept to reality?Continue reading “Introduction – What’s Here and Why”
What’s wrong with this picture?
This diagram above is from a course on user interaction design. The teaching:
- Motivation is tied to emotion. (Agreed.)
- It’s important to understand that when designing user experience. (Agreed.)
- And here are all the relevant emotions in one useful diagram! (Agreed…until I started thinking about it.)
Random list of possible resources for bridging political divides
- How We Can Reduce Prejudice with a Conversation
- Our Culture of Contempt: The problem in America today is not incivility or intolerance. It’s something far worse.
- “What we need is not to disagree less, but to disagree better. And that starts when you turn away the rhetorical dope peddlers — the powerful people on your own side who are profiting from the culture of contempt. “
- talking to people ftf is the best way to convince – find link
- Conservatives’ Love Of Nostalgia Can Be Used To Promote Liberal Values
- That’s a fairly irritating way to put it. Perhaps there are only ‘values’ which are not dissimilar across the spectrum.
- From the article:
“A large portion of the political disagreement between conservatives and liberals appears to be disagreement over style, and not content,” they write in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology.
- People who changed their life (love beats hate):