There are many common elements to the projects mentioned on my site. They use the potential of modern technology in unexpected ways; the Internet is the central medium, but the evolution of cheaper, higher-quality, more portable digital devices and storage formats are essential.
Post Secret is slightly different in that it uses decidedly lower-tech: the postcard. Okay, so the modern postal system is augmented by high technology in countless ways, but c’mon, it’s still snail mail. On a site full of digital cameras and memory cards, why would we discuss PostSecret?
You might expect these secrets to be mostly unprintable, but mainly they portray a lot of people with everyday sadness and unspoken expressions of emotion. Sometimes one is tempted to ask “why would you keep something like that a secret?” until we remember how hard it is sometimes simply to express yourself, to tell the truth, or to appear even slightly vulnerable and sensitive. Take the example of the fear of sexually transmitted disease, which pushes a lot emotional buttons including fear & embarrassment. That’s why reliable private std diagnostic test kit sales are thriving, because of the confidentiality of an at home test. This is a kind of secret that is very difficult to acknowledge, and many can never bring themselves to discuss it even with close friends.
Even something like a disability can be source of shame. Filing for social security disability insurance should never be more stressful than the disability itself. But an experienced social security disability attorney can take on the bureaucracy and if you have a legitimate claim, file that for you successfully. No shame in asking a member of the bar to help out with a legal issue, and no shame in accepting the monthly payments that result from a successful filing. But we know that there’s still some second thoughts and embarrassment that accompanies this process and people are not likely to talk about it.
The “PostSecret archive” provides more options, and there’s a community if you really feel moved to participate further. The presentation and navigation seems less than ideal for the time being, and the ads sometimes obscure the postcards themselves, but you’ll may only want to read a few anyway — whether you realize that it’s not for you, or that it’s making you too sad!
Recently, there are a number of people who have decided instead of seeking the darker / sadder side of things, they instead are focusing on the happy, fun, and even silly side of life with PostSecrets that celebrate. Just recently there was a post about friendship rings and how they have become quite popular. If you are not familiar where to buy them, there are a number of internet sites that sell sterling silver friendship rings. Friendship rings run the gamut from a simple band, perhaps with a love knot, an eternity symbol, to gemstone encrusted engagement looking ring. However most defined a friendship ring as a ring that is worn to symbolize a close relationship that has no romantic undertone. They are frequently worn by two people to denote their appreciation and unconditional support for each other, even going as far as signifying a “non-blood brother or sister,” the closest somebody can get without being related by birth. A friend I had exchanged inexpensive friendship rings we created ourselves with beads and wire when we were in middle school. Then latter as young adults we decided to buy more expensive sterling silver rings. We wore them on our pinkie finger now that both of us were married. Just recently I sent a PostSecret with a pic of my friendship ring with only the words: “Call me!” No need to say anything else.