Buscaglia ends with a reminder of how our disembodied illusion of separateness contributes to our inability to inhabit our own selves and how the pathologically overlooked gift of human touch reconnects us not only with each other, but with our own deepest humanity.
(I think Buscaglia might be horrified by today's socially mediafied culture.)
The excerpts Popova chooses bring a nostalgic tear to my eye. Believe it or not, I've been thinking a lot about Leo lately. I think because Helena is about the age I was when my mother and I would spend hours watching Leo Buscaglia's lectures together. Every few months, the PBS pledge drive ensured a marathon of Leo love.
I can't say I enjoyed it exactly. My mother had control of the television (one television, and just the two of us). I'd sit pyjamaed with a Shirley Temple. I wouldn't've done it if it were just to make my mother happy. Part of me must've found it interesting. But it's not anything I told my friends about.
But my mom and I. We'd laugh. And cry. And hug.
I'm not the sort of person to dole out Iloveyous unthinkingly; I won't say it, or anything, if I don't mean it. Sometimes I think of Leo, even these days. Like he's wormed his way into my conscience, or is sitting on my shoulder, entreating me to tell people how much I love them.
I see a lot of myself in Helena; when she turns a certain way, her demeanour, it's like I'm watching myself. Only she's prettier, and kinder, and more loving. I can't believe she loves me so much.