Post Secret, a website that encourages people to send their anonymous secret admissions via postcard, originally started as a community art project and gallery show. In the years that followed, it has rapidly spawned one of the most-read blogs on the internet, as well as two books. Frank Warren, the man behind the project, receives between 100 to 200 confessions a day. Recent cards included: "My Husband can't find his car keys because I hide them," "Sometimes I go shopping at Wal*Mart just so I'm not alone," and "My nightmares involve exploding showers and toilets."
City Pages: What was your inspiration for starting Post Secret?
Frank Warren: I have always felt that people have these rich interior lives and that if given the chance they could share another side of their humanity. So I tried to create a nonjudgmental, anonymous place where people could remove their social masks and reveal the hidden parts of themselves.
City Pages: What do you hope people get out of the Post Secret experience?
FW: I hope that people who visit the website or read the book learn the same thing that I have—everyone has at least one secret that would break your heart if you knew it, and if we could just remember that there might be more compassion and understanding in the world.
City Pages: What is it that drives you to continue the project after so many confessions? Are their any secrets posted that you still think about today?
FW: I think many of us have a desire to read these soulful, funny, and poetic admissions. They can help us learn more about others and maybe something new about ourselves. One of my favorite secrets arrived in my mailbox written on part of a Starbucks cup. The handwritten message on the stamped and addressed cup read, "I give decaf to customers who are rude to me." The secret that still haunts me: "Everyone who knew me before 9/11 believes I am dead."
Frank Warren discusses Secret Lives of Men and Women tonight at Barnes & Noble. Free. 7:30 p.m. 3225 W. 69th St., in the Galleria, Edina, 952.920.0633. Also 7:00 p.m. Friday January 19 at Birchbark Books, 2115 W. 21st St., Minneapolis, 612.374.4023.