Apologies By Proxy
photo: John Dean
HAVE YOU BEEN WRONGED?
ARE YOU OWED AN APOLOGY?
IN THREE MINUTES, TELL US THE TALE AND WE WILL GIVE YOU YOUR OVERDUE APOLOGY
Apologies By Proxy's recent sojourn to New York City was a tremendous success. With 100 heartfelt apologies given over the course of four days, the people of New York City are now in much better mental health.
The concept behind “Apologies By Proxy” is simple: In three minutes or less, you tell the tale of an event regarding which you feel you are owed an apology. We then give you that apology. You keep your apology for when you need it, and, when you are ready, you pass the apology on to someone else who needs one.
Apologies were given by proxy:
for drama queen roommates
for schoolyard bullies
for the U.S. healthcare system
for a dry cleaner
for the NY art world
for family businesses
for being lied to at work
What began as a small piece of performance art has shown itself to be a powerful tool for change and learning. The sudden moment of intense intimacy with a complete stranger can be overwhelming. The apology is genuine and, through some mysterious force, it works. Tears were shed, hugs were given. “I’m Sorry” proves to be a potent phrase.
The Apology desk is often approached on a lark with an attitude of gaiety, with stories that have often been honed, over the years, into humorous tales, although the original hurt is still there. While receiving the apology, the layers of concealment fall away as the words “I’m Sorry” wash across the face of the apologee. Events can be 10, 20, even 30 years old, and still the apology that never came is needed.
If you or anyone you know received an apology and would like to write about your experience, please write into the blog, at http://apologiesbyproxy.blogspot.com, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thank You! And again,
Spoon Popkin & Lee Sinoski
If you would like to make a donation in appreciation of your apology it is greatly appreciated, but not expected or required. Thank You!
Guest Apologist Dr. Malcolm Seymour photo: Spoon Popkin
Why the time limit?
The three-minute rule serves to impress on the apologee the need to get to the meat of their apology event. We are not trained psychologists, we are professional apologists. While “Apologies By Proxy” does promote good mental health, it cannot replace a lifelong course of therapy.
How can this be free?
You can’t charge for an apology. It has to be given freely and without expectation of any return.
Am I being filmed/taped?
No, the apology is completely private. There is no hidden camera or recording device, there is no book being written. The apology is this one moment only. In fact, we often are so caught up in the moment that the details of your apology are immediately forgotten. If you choose to share your thoughts or feelings about your experience, we encourage you to do so, but it is not required or expected.
Why do you do it?
Call it good karma or community service, but the lessons learned through apologizing are infinite.
Can I get an apology online?
No, we’re sorry, but the nature of the apology requires the kind of personal contact that the Internet cannot provide.
Can I hire a professional apologist to come to my event?
Yes! Just ask and we may be able to attend your event. Please keep in mind that while the apologies are free, the U.S. transit system is not. Compensation for attending events is welcome.
Where can I see more about Apologies By Proxy?
This work is difficult, if not impossible to fully document, as it survives only in the memories of the Apologee. The end of the Apology is only the beginning of the work, the final result is in the life of the reciever.
At our website www.apologybyproxy.com
you can leave traces of your story, if you should so choose to.
Posted by Spoon Popkin