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Thursday, May 17, 2018

Moonlight, lonely highway, tall stories -Communication is what makes us human: More tips for thinking, writing and speaking in a world of quicksand communications

96. Storytelling on night drives.

The lights are dim, we’re in our seats and we are all ears. There are fewer spaces more conducive to conversation than a long road trip, especially at night. In the darkness and with the rhythm of the tires on the roadway, we are in a cocoon kind of stage with a captive audience. I’ve enjoyed the best stories with family members and friends in cars on long drives. 
97. Porches, campfires and long walks.
See the firefly! Feel the breeze. Poke the embers around on the campfire. There are comfortable silences. Then, one story from someone will prompt another person to tell their’s. And so turns the planet, now and from the time when we climbed down from the trees. Being outdoors at night brings out the latent storyteller in many of us. Nature reminds us that, like Archie Bell and the Drells of Houston, Texas, we don’t only sing and dance, we tell stories and listen to them as well.
98. What’s a story?
Stories are a multipurpose tool. They can teach or tickle, entertain or perplex us. They tell others who we are and what we have learned. They contain the past and the present. They are a gift to the listener and the person who remembers aloud.
99. Children and stories.
The smartphone may be a great baby sitter but it doesn’t smile, encourage or ask questions like mama and papa. The sweetest sounds I’ve ever heard are the cooing conversations a parent has with their infant. From the cradle through soccer practice and college graduation, kids need to hear and practice conversations and storytelling. 
100. Ask questions like “what” instead of “why”.
We generally learn lots more by asking ourselves, “What is it that is going on, or what is it I feel like before I attack the bowl of m&m’s?” rather than “Why do I eat too many m&m’s?”

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