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Hug #19

November 8, 2010

Hug #19

Friday, November 5 9:00-10:00 am
Daley Plaza, SE corner, Randolph and Dearborn

Mostly I think about one little boy who looked at us and kept looking over his shoulder, again and again. His father rubbed his head and said simply “they’re hugging.” They kept walking, crossing the street, a car was waiting to turn, but they were slow to cross. The boy was stubborn, and kept trying to look back while walking forward. His father said, “C’mon, lets go.” He looked back until he was completely out of site. I wonder what about us had caused such a curiosity in him; was he missing something, or wanting, or just insanely curious? I wonder if he said anything about us later. What questions he had, if any at all.

The giant TV faced me, and time after time, I watched the Channel 2 Newsteam in slo-mo walking toward me. Then a real live body appeared in front of the screen. It seemed so small. 3 men, getting ready to get hauled up a giant frame–window washers. They watched us, they talked about us, and I wonder what they said. I wanted to shout to them, to ask them to send us a signal, to broadcast their comments to the square.

One man hugged as and said “I love you”

One man took a photo, hugged us, got our names on a lined piece of paper, and said we were great for doing this. Thank you, we said.

The first cold day. Our toes were getting cold. Our sign fell over twice from the fierce wind. No one picked it up. We, wanting to remain in our embrace, hobbled over together and without disconnecting, leaned down to upright it again. This got some smiles, some raised eyebrows. We laughed too, at the sight of ourselves. And we continue to laugh, with each other, with the world around us, with the people that stop, and with the people that pass without seeing us. Just because, we are Hugging for love. And we are Hugging to advocate for love, for touch, and this simple way of giving and receiving support, care, and reassurance to our hearts and minds.

Aurora is going to do a talk about our Hugs this week, and has been doing some research on Hugs. This prompted me to do some of my own. I found this bit, which I will share with you now:


Hugging may sound like the simplest thing on earth, but it will help to keep a few things in mind. Non-hugs are no good. In his book Caring, Feeling, Touching, Dr Sidney Simon describes five non-hugs:

I. The A-frame hug, in which nothing but the huggers’ heads touch.
2. The half-hug, where the huggers’ upper bodies touch—while the other half twists away.
3. The chest-to-chest burp, in which the huggers pat each other on the back, defusing the physical contact by treating each other like infants being burped.
4. The wallet-rub, in which two people stand side-by-side and touch hips.
5. The jock-twirl, in which the hugger, who is stronger or bigger, lifts the other person off the ground and twirls him.

The real thing, the full body hug, touches all the bases. Dr Simon describes it like this: “The two people coming together take time to really look at each other. There is no evasion or ignoring that they are about to hug… You try as hard as you can to personalize and customize each hug you give… With a full body hug there is a sense of complete giving and fearless. Communication, one uncomplicated by words.

2 Comments leave one →
  1. November 15, 2010 7:38 am

    You are great indeed!

    • November 22, 2010 2:30 am


      Thanks for your wonderful energy! I checked out your website and blog and I’m excited about the way you are looking closely at the things around you and sharing your findings with others. Take care and many hugs to you!


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