On Friday’s our cafeteria serves burritos. They’re delicious and cheap. I wanted to share my love for them, so I wrote a poem and taped it to the outside of the cafeteria, hoping that other people would read it.
I stood outside the cafeteria seeing if anyone would read it. Nobody did. Why is that? I have a few ideas:
1.) I’m trying to compete with people’s precious free time (lunch break). Maybe reading something isn’t what people want to do with that time.
2.) I printed it out on a piece of white paper, with regular font size. Perhaps I should’ve made it larger font to be more visible?
3.) I thought that by putting it next to the hand sanitizer that there’d be some notice by association. There wasn’t. Way more people solely noticed the hand sanitizer. One person may have looked at the paper but turned away quickly.
4.) Way more people looked at me standing there, watching seemingly nothing, than the paper. I’m super tall and unusual looking, so I kind of stand out. I guess people are more noticeable than a sheet of paper. Duh?
I spoke to a coworker and told him about what I did. He said that he forgot that today was burrito day, that he loved the burritos here, and was going to go buy a burrito and read the poem. Between him leaving and coming back, he forgot to read the poem, but remembered to get the burrito (plus fries and onion rings – jesus christ this kid is a monster).
So, getting people to do something that’s outside their normal behavior is not easy. Even if you tell somebody to do something, they quickly forget. Even if you work on something with all your heart, it doesn’t even register in their field of vision.
So why did I create this?
I created it for people like me. I’m the type of person who loves finding secret things (even if they aren’t). I love art and the idea of seeing art in the wild is something magical to me. Even if one person out of a thousand reads it, I’ll be happy. I created something and placed it strategically. If somebody reads it, maybe their day will be a little more joyful. Maybe they will see my joyful expression and in return, receive a little joy.
I’m not dejected by my failure, I’m emboldened. I made something, collected some results, and next time I will do something different. But the next time I do it I’m going to do it a little bit better.
Until then, adieu.