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Find the Future Lowdown: Part 4

May 24, 2011

Probably the most exhilarating part of the night for us bibliophiles: the trip down into the stacks. From the NYPL, also published in Gothamist:

Seven floors, 20 million books on miles of shelves.

Stuck in between books were postcards from the future. The game staff wrote, by hand, 500 postcards, transforming our dreams into future realities. We were asked to grab one, read it, and find the person to whom it was addressed. Holding someone’s future in your hands might seem impossible. Cheesy. Impossibly cheesy. But in these circumstances, it also felt cool and important. In the middle of the night, you’re given the chance to read what might be written if you actually fulfill your dream. Impossibly and importantly cheesycool. I pulled the postcard of another educator, the incredible and kid-energizing and good-spreading Kenny Mikey of Page Turner Adventures. And the woman who pulled mine left me little notes all over the place asking me to call her because, of course, she had my future.

And finally, all those quests we wrote, drew, and created … they were sent directly to a designer, who printed on the spot and gave the pages, our new artifacts, to Gavin Dovey of Paper Dragon Books. TO BIND ON THE PREMISES. IN THE MIDDLE OF THE NIGHT. Gawk, gape, goggle.

When tech meets antiquity, there are bound to be glitches, and Find the Future had its share. But I just don’t care. I feel lucky to have spent the night at the library, to have had time and space to admire its artifacts, and to have met others who were similarly invested in hanging around Oscar Wilde’s final work, the teachings of Confucius, Coltrane’s handwritten score, and Cassini’s map of the world.

I do wish I could have been there with a couple other bibliophilic cheerleaders. (Jeanette … Jason … Deb … I’m looking right at you!)

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  1. What an AMAZING experience, Suzanne! Your enthusiasm bounds off the page. A delight to read (and pretty darn inspirational :).


  2. Jeanette LeBlanc permalink

    The trip down into the stacks!!! With you in spirit on this extraordinary game & writing adventure. Holding someone’s future in your hands is a pretty big deal (and way more cool than cheese). Looks like Kenny of Page Turner Adventures (and Page) are quite retro-charming and that their future is full of great possibilities, just like yours. NYPL obviously believes in your vision as a social scientist and writer. I certainly do too. Thanks for these wonderful updates.


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