Introductions


We’re often awkward about introducing ourselves in a whole new arena. We either say too little …or too much. Is it relevant to say what I do for a living? Should I say how many degrees I have? Should I – as is custom in many cultures – say who my father’s father’s father was and where he was from…

One of my Angolan students put it brilliantly, I thought: ” Don’t tell me you’re Dr. So-and-so,” he said. “Let me see your patients take your hand in the street in respect and gratitude…and I’ll know who you are. Nor say that you are a great teacher. Let a child run up to you, taking your case to carry and I’ll know who you are in the world. Let me learn to honour you by what you are to others. Don’t tell me!”

In a cyber world where I could be anyone, anywhere…does it matter how I introduce myself? And yet on all the blogs I visit, I go and look to see who this is writing these words, whose views are these- is it another American? A girl or a guy?  A fanatic this or that? I look for a box to place them in… or to condecendingly cheer them on, for breaking out of a box I enclosed them in! Why does the introduction and the necessary value I place on random “facts” determine whether I hang round to read more, subscribe or not?

…So here is my turn – to introduce myself…I’m a lover of words, colour and life… and I use these elements as a full expression of myself and as a means of connecting with others. My name is Hani.

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