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  • During a nice social event, I met a lot of people I hadn’t ever seen before. With one of them, the conversation was, among other topics, about my book with autobiographic stories about growing up as an orphan in a western country. I’ve gotten a lot of unexpected reactions about the topic, but the comment I received that evening, lingered.

    "So uhm, you’re an orphan. Yeah, and I’m one of twins. Who cares?"

    "Pardon?"

    "We all have certain things. It’s not special. Why write a book about it."

    "Oh, in that case I probably overlooked that every set of twins at a young age have witnessed their parents lying dead in a coffin."

    "…"

    "So?"

    "OK, now I feel like a jerk.

    Trust me. Comparing orphans to twins is comparing apples to oranges. Well, at least the oranges on the picture can both fly on broomsticks, just like the orphan standing with them on the picture in this post. That’s a similarity. And they’re all nice, smart guys. That too. Unfortunately, I can’t fly on broomsticks (except at Halloween). But I can write books. Feels almost the same, I suppose.

    For the record: I can totally understand that a lot of people have a bit of trouble creating a current image of what it means to be an orphan in today's society. That's why I wrote the book.

    Also for the record: it was a really nice guy, who made the clumsy remark. He just wasn't aware of the severity. And that's okay. He became curious about the book. So three pluses: 1. another person takes the opportunity to develop his own opinions about the topic; 2. another reason for me to trust that this issue still has to be addressed; 3. it was a nice party. Parties are nice.
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