Can a stranger make you happy?

When you’re having a bad day, do you find that unburdening yourself and venting about your problems makes you feel better?

Sarah Treleaven 0
music

Masterfile

When you’re having a bad day, do you find that unburdening yourself and venting about your problems makes you feel better? Conversely, when you’re on top of the world, are you looking around for someone who needs their spirits raised? Well, a new site — EmotionalBagCheck.com — is hoping to unify those two desires.

At the site’s homepage, you pick one of two options: “I’ve got baggage,” which allows you some space to share what you’re going through; and “Take that for you,” which allows you to read a message left by someone have a tough time and then choose a song for them to listen to, which will hopefully help lift their mood. Both options allow users to remain completely anonymous — which is a nice touch in a world where you’re increasingly expected to synchronize your entire online existence — and each message is only seen by the one person randomly assigned to reading it. That way, your problem is shared with someone but not subject to the (possibly unwanted) feedback of a massive forum.

According to a recent story by Lesley Ciarula in the Toronto Star about EmotionalBagCheck.com, about 41,000 bags have been checked so far — and it’s fairly popular with teens who have unrequited crushes. (A heavy bag indeed, at that age.)

So what do you think? Would you ever use this site to drop off or help carry a particularly heavy piece of baggage? It could be considered a simple way to perform a random act of kindness. Plus, music does can have a significant effect on mood — as I and anyone else who’s ever gone through a painful breakup can attest. There’s a reason people either steer clear (moi) or dive deep into incredibly morose tunes when they’re already feeling low. The top songs recommended on the site are a mix of happy, pop tunes and inspirations ballads — and Bobby McFerrin’s classic “Don’t Worry Be Happy” is, of course, also pretty popular.

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *