Saturday, November 29, 2008

sometimes I wonder about how I spend my time

And while I've been trying to make my pirouettes better, people have been making amazing things like this.

The thing about dancing is that you can't take a year off and then come right back to it, and you can't just do it on the weekends, or when you're done with your 9-5.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

"how many pixels does that look like? " "i don't know about pickels."

Things I've been up to lately...

Today, I went to CSU East Bay to see a piece my boss directed. For the first half, I felt like crying. For the second half I was mostly sitting on the edge of my seat, muscles tensed, until the last few minutes when everything relaxed. I have a visceral reaction to the art this man makes, and I fall in love every time. I enjoy calling him my boss because I think he's a genius, and quite possibly the most honest man I've ever met.

Part of the adventure was taking BART all the way to Hayward, and then biking to the campus. (When I got home I found out that my roommate is going to China for 20 days to visit her father, and is planning to spend several in Beijing on her own. I felt less adventurous.)

Hayward is obviously not as much of a biking town as San Francisco, and if it was, I obviously didn't know the biking route - I felt nearly sideswipped several times as I made my way down what was aparently the 3-lane main drag. Also, Hayward is flat, but CSUEB is on top of a giant hill. I was sweating bullets at the top, where I finally came across a "share the road" sign. The hill was too steep for me to ride down, so when I was going home I walked. (I'm a weannie).

I'm going through some self-evaluation, brought on by the combination of the fact that it's about time for me to figure out how to engineer a change in my life and the end-of-year evaluations at my school. Part of what I'm thinking about is components of myself that don't change, and I came up with this:

Heh. Perhaps another one unwavering self characteristic is my overwhelming dorkiness. I also dance most days, and plan to forever. In the larger spectrum of humanity, saying I'm a dancer (and for some, defining that as a classical dancer) is enough to give you a satisfying definition, but within the dance world, or even a single dance genre, there are so many varieties. The more people I talk to about what I should do to find the next step, the more I get asked, well, "What do you want to do?"

I wanna dance, dammit! Just tell me where to go! (These are thoughts from fantasy land.)

But thinking about exactly what I want is really helpful. I feel my dancing is most profound when I can relate to the movement as feelings and ideas. One of my goals for the spring is to find an approach (or multiple ones) that allow me to consistently think about class and choreography as ideas. This is hard to explain, the idea's aren't literal, but feelings sounds too mushy... but there is a certain way my brain comprehends a movement and, if it's engaged in that way, I dance better.


I thought I was too old for the self-definition game, but perhaps it is ongoing. Maybe that's the best thing about it.

About one year ago I was asked the question, "If there were no circumstances, what would you do?" No circumstances - that means no need for money, no need to feed self, clothe self, do self's laundry or self's dishes. I had a hard time answering the question, because, like anybody, particular circumstances in my life have played a large part in making me who I am, and I am grateful for them. I ended up saying, "I would do exactly what I am doing, and I would create."

In the past year, I have stopped photography. No time, I'm focusing on dancing. I have stopped journaling, and have not even been forced to make a website or compose an essay. In the past year, I have felt most rewarded as a dancer when I had the opportunity, whether by design or accident, to create my own movement.


Wednesday, November 12, 2008


For a while I spent time in coffee shops. Sometimes I would work. Sometimes I would write or read. Sometimes I met people, and often times I was alone.

There was one coffee shop with comfortable armchairs that was a further walk away, but I liked to go there on breaks when the chance to sit meant more than the chance to get a lot done. There was one that had nowhere to sit, no where to stand really - it was basically just a place to buy coffee in an alley - but they made the best soy lattes in town. The place was generally surrounded by boys in skinny jeans. There was the other place with shitty coffee but plenty of outlets to plug in a computer. They also sold wine, and I met a Frenchman there once.

And there was the one where I met the artist who told me that sometimes life is like painting, as if painting was what it was, painting was it, and when life was like painting then life measured up.

I don't paint, but I understand what he meant.

Someone told me today that it seems like I'm in a really good place lately, and that my work is paying off. Perhaps, but still surprising. I'm working through a breakup, the quintessential tv-drama equivalent of not in a good place. I'm often cranky, moody, and go through periods of not wanting to interact with anyone while simultaneously needing someone around.

All the same, I'm dancing a lot. There are all sorts of colors of paint, and all sorts of textures, dynamics, and tempermeants in dancing. Technically, I'm working on dropping the sense of my center of gravity, which has a lot to do with releasing tension held in my cheast and rib cage. Physically, when I do this I feel like I can more easily access the full range of the muscularity of my arms and legs. Emotionally, it makes me feel vulnerable.

(Somehow, all these things relate in my mind. Oh goodness. Goodnight.)