it’s where you go when you don’t want to go home, or you don’t want to go to work. the concept was introduced to me by an architect who explained about situationism and drift, and how sometimes you need to get great ideas by just getting out of our routine and allowing something unexpected to ‘hit you,’ as in ‘a-ha.’
which is great. as it will work at times, as most creative people know, when out of nowhere in particular an idea just falls out of the sky into your head.
ideation + extraordinary moments
this is a great benefit of ‘the third place.’ letting things arrive, as in, just allow them to come towards you, instead. creating opportunities for yourself to wander, then, is at the heart of discovery and design and learning in this kind of fashion. which invites the new to happen naturally, organically. in an era where all options are always ‘on’, it feels comfortable to me to know there is a ‘third place’ to go to every so often and unwind. with other people who, like me, appreciate the value of agendaless conversations that drift towards the interesting and occasionally warm-hearted, because they keep happening, over time. regularly.
according to wikipedia on ‘the third place’, third places are where people spend time between home (‘first’ place) and work (‘second’ place). ‘they are locations where we exchange ideas, have a good time, and build relationships… depending on their location, social classes and backgrounds can be “leveled-out” in ways that are unfortunately rare these days, with people feeling they are treated as social equals. informal conversation is the main activity and most important linking function… the “living room” of society.’ further, ‘occupants of third places have little to no obligation to be there. they are not tied down to the area financially, politically, legally, or otherwise and are free to come and go as they please…
‘third places put no importance on an individual’s status in a society… there are no prerequisites or requirements that would prevent acceptance or participation in the third place… conversation is the main activity. playful and happy conversation is the main focus of activity in third places, although it is not required to be the only activity. the tone of conversation is usually light-hearted and humorous; wit and good-natured playfulness are highly valued…. third places are characteristically wholesome. the inside of a third place is without extravagance or grandiosity, and has a homely feel. third places are never snobby or pretentious, and are accepting of all types of individuals, from various different walks of life…. occupants of third places will often have the same feelings of warmth, possession, and belonging as they would in their own homes. they feel a piece of themselves is rooted in the space, and gain spiritual regeneration by spending time there.’
so i’ve been hosting a ‘third place’ in phnom penh ever since I got back in november 2021. i will open a new circle for members, for may and june. here is the plan.
9 may | the third place [$]
new members welcome
9 august | the third place
max 4 per session.
want to sign up for membership? here is a link.