If asked how he prepared for his recent 30th birthday, Lucas Jatoba, a Brazilian art director with Italian background living in Australia, would not have given a typical answer about planning a huge blow-out with friends or going on a weekend getaway. No, Jatoba and his friends were busy wrapping 30 gifts to give to 30 strangers.
“Since I arrived in Australia, a lot of beautiful things happened in my life, so on the day I turned 30, I decided to celebrate in a special way, being grateful to the people of Sydney,” Jatoba wrote on his website.
Jatoba, with the help from many friends, made a three-minute video documenting the wrapping of the 30 gifts, randomly presenting them to 30 strangers, and the sincere, gratituous reactions from the gift receivers.
Some of the gifts included a rugby ball, a skateboard, a big stuffed penguin, a free massage voucher, candles, chocolates, and more.
Other than many smiles and hugs, Jatoba and his friends received items in return as well, such as bread, a tennis ball, a kiss, a flower, and a bithday serenade from his newfound friends in Sydney.
The video, as well as the “making of” the video, highlights some of the heartwarming moments and the excitement of making others happy.
Jatoba uses a Cantinflas quote in the video to sum up the whole project: “Man’s first responsibility is to be happy. The second is to make everyone else happy.”
Jatoba has won numerous awards for his creative ideas and has been featured on news programs around the world. He loves to volunteer, people who smile a lot, the way children think, and donating blood.
The “30 Gifts to 30 Strangers” video can be found on www.lucasjatoba.com along with Jatoba’s other projects like the “Adeu, Barcelona” video, in which he tied theatre tickets to heart-shaped balloons and released them to strangers in Barcelona, Spain.
Carol Fritz is a third-year student majoring in communication studies. She can be reached at CF716022@wcupa.edu.