Moleskinerie, my fave online blog of notes and paper-lust, posted a short quote from Harriet the Spy today.

[NOTE: Original blog removed. But check out this on Harriet the Spy from Kat Patrick – Harriet the Spy helped me come to terms with my queer identity]

This brought back a flood of memories of the sixth grade. That year, I carried around an old, reporter-style notebook and made notes very similar to those that I had seen and read about in this book. Observations. Comments. Vague thoughts.

It is probably from here that I began to understand the power of everyday events to shape people’s lives in a larger way. What does arriving late to school tell me about what happens in the rest of someone’s day? What does it tell me about their life outside of the context I see them in?

From here, I developed a sensitivity to how people’s behaviour is driven by the forces in their life, and what it tells me about what they are thinking.

The most empathetic and insightful people you know aren’t psychic; they are just paying attention.