Jan 10, 2010

In Praise of Wasted Creativity

I was deeply, grievously wounded today. Our friend had the audacity to forget to come pick up her milk. Instead of the usual "oh i suck" email or phone message, she shared a considerable amount of energy, talent, and time (probably the same time it would have taken to pick up the milk) to write the hilarious email copied below.

What a pure treat to have a friend who takes the time to just be fun. No need to maximize the impact or spread of her work (ie, blog), no question of whether it's worth the effort to tap that creative energy for a seemingly unimportant communication. She felt a creative spark and just went with it, not caring what it ignited. And in the process made us feel cherished and entertained and deeply deeply impressed.


Lets down family and friends

Associated Press
January 7, 2010
Duncan, Canada

In a development that surprises no one, Chantell Foss, to all appearances a typical Canadian housewife, has revealed the depths of forgetfulness achievable by a truly scatterbrained specimen. Having confirmed her milk pick up no less than 4 times with her associates the Juliussons and her husband, she could not explain to reporters how she managed to forget her three substantial jugs of valuable, farm-fresh local milk. “I had carpooling today! It’s our first day back to school! It just slipped my mind, okay?”, said Foss as she tried to get her younger child out of a minivan with his lunchbox and mittens.

A disappointed Justin Straker, Foss' husband and partner of many years, just shook his head when confronted with events. “Well, it’s happened before… so no one really… counts on having milk around here…”, he revealed when pressed.

Sarah and Rick Juliusson, whose standard-size kitchen fridge is currently burdened with Foss’ milk overload, couldn’t be reached by phone for comment. However, we received the following text message from an unconfirmed source calling himself “Galen”:“Y no room 4 my pickles? Mummy 2 sad 2 play.”

Duncan mayor’s assistant Yasmeen Coco Figwit-LeClerc made this statement. “Elected officials and community members are appalled. We take this kind of thing very seriously around here, rest assured. After the rain flooding we had in November, we are very concerned with the renewed threat of level three flooding in Cowichan Station and are monitoring developments closely. If Foss does not retrieve her milk within 24 hours, we will feed it directly to the Juliusson’s cows.”

- Rita Skeeter

For this compulsive blogger, this was a good reminder that I write not just to share, but primarily to write. To bring my insides out, shake them up and dust them off, then put them back in a new order, to a new place of understanding. In my first ever blog entry I wrote, "hoping and believing that these disparate splashes of paint will all come together into a portrait with meaning, with hope, and above all, with questions." Four months later I was already questioning "What/Why am i writing?", wondering if it would all turn into a book or something worthwhile. But along the way I've learned that merely writing is worthwhile. Just developing and exploring these parts of me and our shared experience has been a rich, growing personal journey. Sharing it has been an equally beautiful journey, and gives it a different flavour and light, but is not the necessary nor even necessarily the primary focus of writing. That would miss the point.

One of the random books that survived our purge yesterday made the same point about farming - a point that I discovered and embraced much faster in farming than in writing. In "EarthLight", Brian Swimme talks about being ready to bask in the beauty of being human in this universe:
If a person is working with food and agriculture, say permaculture, and the primary motive is to produce the food, then there's something missing. The primary motive has to include the opportunity of being stunned by this amazing reality in which we're dealing.

So thank you to my dear friend for reminding us to just Be, to just Create because we can. I share her email with my narrow bandwidth of the world because she and her work deserve a spotlight, because it made me laugh, because she reminded me once again of that lesson from the Indigo Girls song, "and the best thing you've ever done for me is to help me take my life less seriously, it's only life after all." And also because i'm utterly defeated in my intention to actually write a worthy come-back (It would start with a letter to her husband, "Dammit, I'm still holding your wife's jugs...").

1 comment:

  1. THanks for sharing Rick! Hilarious!