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Life Lessons from The ‘Burbs

At the beginning of April I set the intention to have a face-to-face interaction with each of my 24 neighbors. But as April turned into May I still hadn’t taken action on my challenge. Quite simply, I was scared. Not because I suspected by neighbors were incinerating bodies in the basement, but because I was afraid of violating the unspoken but very real norm of privacy, and the unmentioned, but very palpable code of silence that governed our community. In the face of engaging in a simple, but profoundly countercultural act, I completely froze.

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Inviting People Over, Inviting People In

According to sociologists, one of the clearest trends in Americans’ socializing habits over the past few decades has been a marked decline in the frequency with which we entertain in our homes. Could the fact that our attempts to connect happen largely outside our homes—separate from the epicenter of our lives—be a driver of our widespread loneliness? In March, I’ll try to find out.

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