Friday, June 15, 2012

You Want Me To Wear What!?

I gave up dance at the age of seven for good reason.  I mean really who wants to go around in a pink leotard with rabbit ears on their head.  I don't care now if you're only seven and I didn't care then.  Of course then my reason for quitting dance had nothing to do with the slightly off the wall costume and more to do with my belief that I was a tap dancer not a baton twirler.  I quit right after I learned that twirling with my left hand, well it, like the bunny suit, just wasn't happening.  So that was it for me and dance lessons until just a few days ago. 

After emerging from over a month of revisions on two stories I was invited by a friend to participate in a Zumba class.  Exercise sounded like a good thing so I washed up my walking runners, making them fit for indoor use and headed off.  Note to self:  dry runners thoroughly before putting them on feet.  So with slightly damp runners, an off-the-shelf bottle of water rather than a thermo-lined container of water, and dress that screamed I was not a regular - ancient yoga pants and a souvenir t-shirt from the Great Wall of China, I lined up with the others curious to see what this was all about.

The music started - yes music!  This was dance, dance with a latin flavour.  Okay, A) latin music wasn't covered in bunny hop baton 101.  B) did I mention I quit dance all those years ago?  Not that I can't dance, I can.  I danced my way through the nightclub phase of my early twenties and even through an Octoberfest or two.  I'm just not saying how well I danced my way through these events - passable I'll say, no one was going to throw me off the dance floor but Fred Astaire, even if he were still around, wasn't going to come calling. 

So gamely I sashayed left and sashayed right, left then right then forward and back, right then left - no wait - wasn't that right or maybe that was forward or...  I struggle for a few seconds to orientate myself, or maybe just to get a break.  I'm hot and thirsty - this is hard work!  On the upside I'm keeping up, in my own transposed version of what the instructor is demonstrating.  And you know - perfectionism aside - it was fun!

So I'm back to my office space and it's fantastic.  I can't believe all the hard work that went into making that "junked up space" into a real office.   It's a little barren right now but it's new and fresh and ready to go.  Without decor of any kind, it's not perfect but like the stories still waiting further revisions and getting into shape with the exercise class -  it's all a work in progress.

But all the inspiration you'll ever need isn't in a pair of new runners (even hot pink or lime with a swizzle stick) or in the most beautiful office space in the world.  The motivation is inside you. 

What's motivated you lately?


Sunday, June 3, 2012

Stories Are Like Silly Putty - Life, Not So Much

We know one needs to be able to bounce to survive the ups and downs of life.  But sometimes even a good bounce isn't enough to ward off disaster.

A broken tee - not quite a broken ear.
"Oh my God, what did you do?" Is not the first sentence one wants to hear from the doctor examining an injury.  But that's what I heard the other day.  Good thing I could still hear for while doing yard work and moving the wheelbarrow, I backed into something, tripped and came straight down on the logs that border the garden bed.  I landed on my ear which let me say, kind of stuns you.  Luckily, you don't usually get a concussion when you hit your ear at that angle.  That was the good news.

What you can do is break the cartilage on the outside shell of your ear, and that can take more stitches than the last injury that sliced your hand.

So my ear is not at all like silly putty or even elastic for that matter.  Who would have thought?  But it's behind me now.  The stitches out yesterday. So ears aren't too flexible but you know what - fiction is. 

       The last few weeks I'd crawled into that revision cave.  You know the place where you hunker down to fix what's wrong with the current story and don't emerge until days later.  Not literally but bad enough that any hours at the computer are relegated to working on the story, after long hours looking at the screen all you want to do is go out and see if the sun still shines.   So online I disappeared approaching no one unless they approached me.  What can I say, revising is tiring.  Not like the strings of a fresh story - revisions have more of that urgency to get it done and move on. 

      But back to the title and silly putty - fiction is elastic.  The more one pokes holes the more solid it seems to become.  It's been ripped and torn but never broken for at it's heart it really is the same story.  So now it's off to send the latest revisions out.  All better and all done without the benefit of stitches or dressings.

       So even though some things in life aren't too elastic - my ear for instance, other things are, like the recent plans this weekend to get together with a friend.  Somehow that never happened.  Instead a whole series of unexpected events happened and my weekend was fun and completely not as I'd planned.   So maybe the title might have to be changed.  Life like fiction...sometimes you just have to bounce.  Or...?

      Any silly putty in your life lately?