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Non-Hugger's Survival Guide

“I’m sorry. I’m not a hugger. If you’ve never lived on a Gulf Island in British Columbia, that might not sound like a big deal. But believe me, it is. Truth be told, I am more likely to hug a tree than another human being. Not because I am a wide-eyed devotee of Dr. Suzuki (though I could be). But because I see more that I admire in the upright, steadfast, self-reliant nature of most trees than in a lot of humans. My issue, not theirs.

In case you don’t know this, not being a hugger when you live on a Gulf Island is akin to living in Switzerland and not liking chocolate, or not owning a pickup truck in Fort McMurray. People hug here at the drop of a batik scarf.


‘Seriously, you were first off the ferry this morning? Bring it in. Mmmmmm.’ ‘My god I haven’t seen you since the potluck last night. Let me put my arms around you and smell the stale incense in your hair.’ ‘Whaaat? Only four likes for that picture of your dog on the beach? Let me hold you till the pain goes away.’

Call me uptight, old fashioned, not in touch with my true feelings. I confess to being guilty on all charges your honour. Just please don’t do it with your arms around me, chest to chest, groin to groin.”

An enjoyable excerpt from Chris Straw's ‘Non-Hugger’s Survival Guide’ in Volume 1 of FOLKLIFE. He must be in his element. Are you?

Purchase the digital edition of volume 1 here: https://folklifemag.square.site Photo by Trent Haaland

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