Thursday, February 02, 2006

Dumb-luck complications

Right. So yesterday, after choir rehearsal and fencing practice, I had my first Vagina Monologues rehearsal. Because I came straight over from fencing, I ended up getting there a couple of minutes late, and found everyone sitting around having some kind of general meeting. As soon as I sit down, I hear one of the girls talking about how she and another girl have been checking all of the local boxing schools and karate dojos and random martial arts studios, and that they haven't gotten any responses yet. After listening in for a while and still having no clue what the hell they were talking about, I asked a girl sitting next to me if she knew what was going on. "Oh, it's something we want to incorporate into the women's empowerment program... we want to put together a woman's self-defense course, and we're trying to find someone to teach it."

I promise... there was a moment that I really did consider not saying anything. I thought I might just nod my head and feign disinterest. Then I thought of who they might get and what they might teach. I thought of all the conversations I've had with John and other fellow martial artists about how this sort of thing should be handled (women's self defense courses are often a sad kind of joke among martial arts circles, well-meaning though such programs might be)... and then I took a deep breath, rolled my eyes at myself, and told the girl next to me that I was a martial artist with teaching experience, and sure, I'd put together a women's self defense somethingorother. Everyone seemed overjoyed, took a quick vote on it, and moved on. I asked if this was just a quick, one-day clinic sort of thing. "No, not at all," said the girl next to me, who turned out to be one of the directors. "This would actually be a full-time position, all semester, hopefully all year... and the university would pay you for doing it." Okay, so yeah, I'm not fighting it too hard at this point. I mean, come on! They wanna pay me for it? Oh, sure... I think you've got yourself a martial arts instructor.

After that, we went on to rehearse. My part was "woman #2" of three women who share one monologue. It went dryly, as most first readings will. Okay, actually, a bit more dryly than I might have hoped. I was trying to work, despite being a little tired from the fencing... I tried things, worked with the lines where I could... the other two girls, to be honest, might as well have been reading the ingredients on the back of a box of croutons. I got funny looks from the director, but at least they weren't disgusted looks... just weird ones. Then, today, I got an email asking me to take another role in place of the one I read, which would be a bit larger... the "introductions" was the only description I got, and I have a feeling this will include more than one, um, introduction... frankly, I have no idea. I shrugged, responded that I'd agree to the change, and went about my day.

I don't suppose an addition here and there to the state of things should make too much of a difference. It's never a big shock when things compile like this... it tends to happen in life, the way I figure it. So no biggie... just take it in stride, don't dwell on the free time you're losing, and keep on doing everything you love. I don't imagine you can go wrong when you look at things that way. One of my fellow grad students said the other day that people should learn to stick to doing one thing and be serious about it. Maybe, for some, that's the only way to make things work. I don't see how that has to be the case... why can't people do several things at once, and strive to do them well, and with passion, and still thrive and be happy and find time to watch a few hours of mind-numbing TV? I don't mean to jinx it or anything, but I promise that it's possible.


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