The Listening Project is like a parasite. I worded that very carefully — “like a parasite” — which is to say it exists within the Haverford community and also depends upon the Haverford community to survive. Your roadblocks and hesitations become our roadblocks and hesitations; the harder it is for you to record, the harder it is for the LP to fulfill its goal.
The most common hesitation: It’s intimidating. I’m not sure what I’d say. I have to come up with something good.
Good gracious! Further proof that the Haverford community is too thoughtful and wonderful to believe! I now realize that perhaps the scariest part of the Listening Project is also the part that I thought would make it so appealing: you really don’t have to prepare much. The goal is really to capture stories and reflections on Haverford as they arrive in your brain. It’s scary to think that you can do this without preparing a lot. Picking the “right” interview partner can prove challenging… even intimidating.
So… I’ve come to help! During the opening event, we talked a bit about pairing: how to pick a good interview partner and the different kinds of pairings we listened to. Here are a couple suggestions to help you pick your ideal interview partner:
- Partner-in-crime: Who can you think of that shares some of your memories? Did you ever climb the field house roof or go tunneling? How did you meet your best friend: at supafun? at breakfast? in a really hard class? Even if you don’t have a specific story in mind, joining up with someone who knows you well can really help the storytelling process. Just pick one of our general questions as a jumping-off point and see where it leads you…
- Roommate: Whatever this means to you — freshman year roommate, current roommate (maybe both!) — roommates are often the people who remember little details that other people might forget.
- Adversary: Hm… I guess this word sounds a little combative. What I really mean is: can you think of anybody who you love to debate with? Is there someone whose views on Haverford are radically different from yours? I bet sitting down and asking them about their opinions and experiences would be informative for everyone. (The flip side of this would also work — is there someone who feels the same way about Haverford as you do? Talk about what you love… or hate. Remember the question: “What do you hope will change at Haverford? Never change?”)
- Significant other: Fairly self-explanatory. Some of our favorite interviews were between married couples… and hey, we all know that Havermarriage exists and persists within the Haverbubble.
Happy recording! (And check back soon for more information about our “Last Chance Office Hours” on Sunday…)