The Listserve: Was würdest du sagen, wenn du zu einer Million Menschen reden könntest?

Na ja. Aktuell sind knapp 23.300 Menschen bei The Listserve angemeldet, aber Million klingt einfach mal besser. Und: Vor 15 Monaten, als ich von Ben die Empfehlung zu The Listserve gelesen habe, waren es gerade mal 13.600.

Das Prinzip ist simpel: Ich bekomme jeden Tag genau eine E-Mail von einem Menschen, der ebenfalls bei The Listserve angemeldet ist. Der schreibt da rein, was er möchte. Hier mal das Werbevideo:

Es ist eine Art Lotterie: Tadaa, Glückwunsch, heute bist du dran, los geht’s, schreib ’ne Mail! Und wenn ich weiß, dass 23.000 interessierte Menschen in der ganzen Welt lesen, was ich schreibe, dann schreibe ich keinen Unfug.

Meist klappt dieser kategorische Imperative ganz gut, manchmal ist aber auch ziemlich übler Missionars-Schmarrn darunter. Egal: Eine Mail pro Tag, das ist machbar, und ich lerne ganz allmählich ein bisschen mehr über die Welt. Geht hin und macht mit!

Und weil ich hier den nötigen Platz habe, anbei mal ein paar gute Beispiele. Hier schreibt ein in die USA ausgewanderter Chinese darüber, wie es wohl wäre, wenn er ein Geschwisterkind wäre. Seinen Eltern ist das per Gesetz verboten worden.

I was born and raised in China, a country known for a lot of things, including the “one child policy.” More than half of the people started to ask about the “one child policy” right after they knew I was born in China.

Do you guys still have that policy?
Why did your country have that policy?
Does China really have a large population? How large is it?
But I heard that people still had more than one child, right?
Blah blah blah.

Yes, we did have that policy, because we did have and still have a large population. It’s very large.

It’s 1/5 of the world’s population.

Right now if two only child get married, they could have two kids.
Just two.
No more than two.

However, what I want to talk about today, isn’t that policy, but a question that has been lingering in my head — how different would I be, if I had a sibling or two?

Recently at work, we interviewed a lot of people for a project. A young women in her late twenties said that her little sister, who’s now nine-year-old, is like her baby before she has her own baby. She would tell her all the lessons that she’d learned in life to prevent her from making the same mistakes. And her biggest wish is for her little sister to grow into a happy and healthy young lady.

I was so moved. I never had that kind of feeling. I never loved anyone in this world unselfishly and unconditionally other than my mom and dad.

I never had a big sister who could have warned me not to fall for Mr. Wrong;

I never had a big brother who could have taught me how to pitch, how to dance, and how to explore the world;

I never had a little sister with whom I could have shared every little secret and every pretty dress;

I never had a little brother whom I’d call dumb and obnoxious all day long but be secretly proud of.

A “mean” friend of mine always says that because I’m the only child, I’m spoiled. I’m eager to win and I always want everything.

But I disagree. Because I was given everything growing up, I cannot care less about monetary things and thus find myself less competitive in a lot of situations.

I cannot prove he’s wrong, nor prove I’m right.

If I had a sibling…
Would I be tougher? Would I be stronger? Would I be kinder?
Would I be more considerate? Would I be more patient? Would I be more mature?
How would they shape me and help me become someone different and better?

I now live a Pacific away from my parents. If I had a sibling, would him or her move here to be closer to me? Would we be each other’s support?

I don’t know. And I will never know.
It’s not like, I’ve never had a true adventure so I’m ready to take a true adventure;
It’s not like, I’ve never fallen onto the cold, hard ground so I’m ready to take the biggest chance.
I could never go back in time and grow up once again with a sibling.

Don’t be greedy with your love for your siblings, coz there are people longing to have one.

Yisha Zhang

Oder: Mojo, ein Araber, laut Pass Eriträer, wohnt als Tourist in den USA und will die Welt bereisen.

Hi, my name is Mojo and I do not have a country.
I hold an Eritrean passport like my father, but I have never even been to Eritrea. The country is unsafe.

I am Saudi born and raised, but I cannot live in Saudi. The country does not grant citizenship or residency rights by birth. I lost my temporary Saudi residency while in the US, studying at Texas A&M University.

I am in a limbo. I cannot go to Eritrea. I cannot remain in Saudi Arabia. I cannot go to the United States. I have been removed from everyone I have ever known or loved. I have been a refugee for the past two years, traveling as a tourist to avoid persecution and deportation to one of the world’s worst dictatorships and police states.

What really matters to me? Music.

However, I have let my circumstances dictate my life. In my religious Muslim family, music is considered the voice of the devil. I am torn between my passion and my fear of disappointing my parents. We all have our excuses for not pursuing our dreams. I’m sure you can relate.

I lost my voice the day I left the United States. I have been silent for two years. I cannot live in silence any longer. My commitment: I will no longer live in fear.

I turn 10,000 days old on February 5, 2014. On that day, I will kick off my journey to travel the world. I will release my first music project online.

I may face hardships. I may face limitations. I will persevere.

Why travel the world? Beyond an obvious interest in people and culture, the reason I want to embark on a journey around the world is because I need to liberate myself and find a home. If I had a country I would just go to it but I carry a passport of a country that enslaves its own people. My nominal relationship with Eritrea has crippled me. My fear of being sent there controlled me for the longest time and I finally said to myself:

„If I cannot go to Eritrea, I’ll just go to every other country in this world.“

I’ll travel to get my voice back. I’ll travel to live my passion. This is what this journey is about. If you want to follow my journey, I’ve created a blog: mojoyeah dot com.

I want to know your story, and what’s been holding you back. Maybe we can all help each other, and change life for the better.



Nur zwei Beispiele, die zeigen, was es da draußen noch so alles gibt. Ich lese nicht alle Listserve-Mails, aber wenn ich sie lese, bin ich danach immer ganz froh darüber, habe ich doch meist etwas dazugelernt.

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