ericamerylthomas [at] gmail [dot] com

idea #5

Added on by Erica Thomas.

I say this with as much humility as possible, knowing full and well that that following is true (and in no way means that I think I am somehow exempt from making mistakes in my relationships): I am great at giving relationship advice. How do I know this? Because I read about relationships as a primary resource for research for my own life and my art practice constantly. And because friends, loved ones, and acquaintances come to me for advice A LOT. In addition, because I spend so much time reading, thinking about and discussing relationships, I'm fairly adept at getting to the nuances of what makes them work, for myself and for other people. I have chosen a particular kind of way to structure the relationships I have in my life so that I can continuously build them, and as such, I have vested interest in finding and growing strong bonds with those I choose to love.

I have used the online dating website OK Cupid to find people to talk with about alternative relationship structures and their approaches. You could call it curiosity, but in art we call this research. Sometimes people, strangers, mostly men (who am I kidding, it has only ever been men, but I suppose there's always the possibility that someday....but I digress), ask me to talk to them about their relationship problems. I have rarely done this in person, but again, for the interest of curiosity and research for project ideas, I have occasionally met on here or there for a coffee and conversation. I have often prescribed books to read, advised on conversation starters, and given my personal read on their descriptions of arguments, conversations, and opinions of their wives, girlfriends, partners and so on. So, I have this idea...

IDEA #5: NEW PROJECT: Whenever someone asks me for relationship advice on OK Cupid I agree but on the condition that they meet me in person and fill out an Advice Request Form,

which I will create to facilitate our interaction. I will agree to keep the form anonymous if requested and will agree to store it for 10 years, as one would with taxes or other data.