Last month, the second season of Orange is the New Black premiered. A fan of the show, I inhaled all episodes in a two-day period. The series is about a woman, Piper Chapman, a woman in her thirties who is sentenced to fifteen months in prison after being convicted of a decade-old crime of transporting money for her drug-dealing girlfriend.
Humans of New York, a Facebook page commonly known as HONY, gives us beautiful, funny, honest, and sometimes very profound glimpses into the lives of ordinary people. It currently has over 7.7 million followers, with thousands of “likes” and comments on most posts.
What does OITNB and HONY have in common? They each provide a glimpse into the lives of everyday men and women and how each of us has a story to tell.
What makes OITNB interesting to this viewer is the flashbacks of particular inmates. We see them as they are in prison, but the flashbacks give us a chance to understand who they were before their prison sentence. Understanding these women makes you want to cheer for many of them and hope they can make things better in their life. Albeit, these are fictionalized stories, they come from truth somewhere, and we can all find something in our own lives that somehow relates has a bit of relevancy. Miss Rosa, played by Barbara Rosenblat, was featured more season 2 and became one of my favorites. Her story was incredibly sad, but the last episode had me shedding “happy tears”.
HONY allows us to see what is inside the person that we pass on the street, in the supermarket, at the library, etc…Most of the posts have stories that upon first glance of the individual, we never would have guessed their situation or story. In a day and age where it seems humanity is all but lost, we get bursts of genuine thoughtfulness, unconditional love, and zest for life through Brandon’s snapshot.
Each of us has a story and each one regardless how boring, disappointing, exciting, fulfilled it is, it may touch another soul for the better. Knowing someone else’s story and situation can open our minds and help become more sympathetic to one another and judge less quickly.