Last week I received an exquisitely wrapped TakeCare package from our friends at The Wylde. Incredibly tasteful and, as the name suggests, full of care. One piece of my TakeCare package was a note that I got a new Wylde buddy. Wow. Not any ordinary buddy, but Melisse Gelula, one of the founders of Well + Good, author, and all-around super cool woman. Lotto Jackpot!
Reaching Out and Showing Up
Of course, I immediately reached out to Melisse to find out how she is weathering the storm. Smartly, it seems she got herself another buddy. This one comes with a tail. Her new friend is Freddie Mercury, a lab mutt of 2 years and 48 pounds. How brilliant! I let her know that I still miss my Chihuahua Nina terribly. She was 16 when we lost her last spring, and I am still not really recovered from that. So it was great to bond on the topic of our favorite non-human species.
TakeCare Package and Hot Toddies
Debra Rapoport also received a TakeCare package, and her buddy was Ivy Brown. “I love the whole thing; it was so special, so thoughtful, so beautiful. Ivy and I are having FaceTime hot toddies this Saturday. You know, with all these anonymous Zoom conferences going on, having someone I really like, who is now my friend, makes such a difference. I can’t wait to hang out and have dinner with her when this is all over.”
A community is about caring. But before caring, there needs to be connection. This is the essence of any group. Connections need some commonality to stick, which can be tricky.
How does this happen digitally? Well, it helps if you have a skilled mix master who can make the introductions that lead to connection. This is what the people at The Wylde do —they are like hosts at a big party, always making eye contact, never ignoring, moving about between the guests a bit like honey bees pollinating these connections. In the physical world, one can walk up to a new person and say hello; in the digital world, that is much harder.
One could think that a club without a place is not a club. In the digital world of social distancing, that isn’t really the case. What makes a club is commonality, connection, and caring. Those are not bound by place. If I think of the place-bound organizations — WeWork, Soho House, SoulCycle — this crisis is not a good environment for them. But something like The Wylde, that makes a great deal of sense in these times.
The Wylde (@wyldepeople) is a new club that brings people together around culture and purpose. They’ve launched in New York and are currently beginning memberships and programming. To find out more sign up here or contact them directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.