Just Six Words

My daughter’s English teacher assigned the class six word memoirs. The six word memoir has become a popular vehicle for breaking the ice and for stimulating creativity. Basically, you sum up your life (or a major aspect of it) in six words. Ernest Hemingway is said to have penned this somber six word memoir: “For Sale: baby shoes, never worn”.

I thought it would be interesting to see how creative our BBTers can be with BT related six word memoirs. So, let’s see it. Here are some to get the juices flowing:

Try so hard. Never fit in.

Just can’t make it work. Dikduk.

Hope Grampa’s kvelling. My first siyum.

My sister (inter)married. I’m still single.

Eight years later. Can’t say ‘ch’.

41 comments on “Just Six Words

  1. I didn’t know I wasn’t Jewish

    I didn’t know who Ramban was

    But I always remembered Rambam’s ladder

    I’m 15, and I’m making aliyah

    I pray for peace in Jerusalem

    Nobody calls me Chana. Just Hannah.

    I secretly love squid, octopus, cuttlefish

    Goyish family members think I’m extremist

    Father, a Jew, I only wish

    Abstincence is harder that I thought

    I hate Messianic “Judaism”, with passion

    The Shidduch Chrisis terrifies me

    Tznius has helped me feel pretty

  2. Happy are we to be Jewish!

    G-d, how fortunate is our lot!

    Know Jewish mothers are the best!

    Israel for the Jewish people, forever.

    Proud to be a religious Zionist.

    Dovid melech yisroel, chai chai vekayam.

    (Holiest six words in the world).

  3. Having said that, it’s a little distressing what a large percentage of submissions here are bitterly negative. Of course I have no idea who’s writing them and what their respective “stories” are.

  4. Writing concisely is a helpful exercise

    Six words good for tag lines

    Websites and books for everything now

    Content is king

    It’s definitely cute and fun

    Conceived before Twitter otherwise 20 words

  5. Mark, I have spoken with High School and College English instructors (yes, I live an exciting life) who have advised me that they have found it to be quite effective and have seen the exercise employed in graduate school programs, there is an entire book of six word memoirs of non-professionals, various websites, a story on National Public Radio (not my politics) and several magazine features. Watch me now:

    Life is not an exact science.

    Creativity is not subject to proof.

    Short but sweet can be deep.

    It’s like standing on one foot.

  6. Found the source.

    From Wikipedia:
    Six-Word Memoirs is a project founded by the U.S.-based online storytelling magazine Smith Magazine. Like that publication, Six-Word Memoirs seek to provide a platform for storytelling in all its forms.


    Smith was founded January 6, 2006, by Larry Smith and Tim Barko.[1] Taking a cue from novelist Ernest Hemingway, who, according to literary legend, was once challenged to write a short story in only six words, [2] Smith Magazine set out to do the same. Hemingway’s six-word story read: “For sale: baby shoes, never worn.”

    In November 2006, Smith’s editors Larry Smith and Rachel Fershleiser gave the six-word story a personal twist, asking Smith readers to tell their life story in just six-words. Smith readers submitted their six-words via http://www.smithmag.net, and Smith’s Twitter account. In early 2007, Smith signed with Harper Perennial to create the Six-Word Memoir book series.

    In May 2008, Smith announced three new Six-Word Memoir book projects: Six Word Memoirs on Love & Heartbreak (2009), then a book of Six-Word Memoirs by and for teens (Six-Word Memoirs by Teens Famous & Obscure), and a second general Six-Word Memoir sequel to the original.

    Looked at the site and it looks cute and fun and it looks like they made some money off it. Personally not sold on the creativity and deep thinking components, but it’s great for tag lines and slogans!

  7. Of course it takes creativity and deep thinking to capsulize (or capsulate) thoughts in 6 words. It’s a great exercise. Maybe I’ll use it in my classes.

    Great Ideas Come From Exceptional Creativity.

  8. David, you know I’m a big fan of the short form and I’m planning some more 60 second (~500 word) guides. I even think there’s value in Twitterizing (140 characters) a thought.

    But to ask people to share feelings, emotions, regrets, triumphs, challenges in 6 words (~40 characters) seems like a daunting task for BBT comments.

    If you could send or post the sources where it has been “proven to be effective in fostering creativity and deep thinking”, I’d like to see in what contexts it’s been effective.

    You Ask Much Therefore Get Slogans

  9. Mark, I didn’t write the post to encourage commentors to submit slogans for Torah.

    Take a look back at the examples in the post. I’m looking for us to share feelings, emotions, regrets, triumps, challenges, etc. in a format that has proven to be effective in fostering creativity and deep thinking. Going too broad would possibly defeat the purpose.

    In fact, my daughter’s six word memoir was “life’s too complex for six words”.

  10. Thanks for wonderful kids, fantastic grandchildren.

    Beauty of Torah Judaism: better life.

    Get Olam Hazeh plus Olam Haba.

    Being Jewish rocks! You try it.

    Learn the Torah. G-d’s instruction book.

    G-d wants us happy. Learn how.

    Lead life right way with Torah.

  11. Yeshiva tuitions? No one told me

    Kids learn in kollel. I pay

    Half the month nidah isn’t mystique

  12. 1) Unable to repay endless Heavenly kindness

    2) Another world after? Better start working.

    3) Repent, O Sinner! (Forgot yaleh v’yavoh.)

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