Be Dangerous! Life is too short to mince words.
Authors are dangerous and so are you! I’ve been teaching a class at Bellevue College. In the second week of the class - Problem Solving for IT Professionals - the question of creativity came up. Only about 3 people out of thirty raised their hand to indicate they believe they are creative people. This doesn’t surprise me, but still it is sad. One day maybe it was yesterday, or years ago, they stood up and made something. They created and opened their heart and put themselves out there. Maybe it was as simple as making a snowflake, or sketching their old husky dog. And when they put their heart out on the table - there was someone there who was sure to let them know how shitty it looked, how imperfect it was; maybe a sibling, a teacher, a stepfather, whomever! And, then they did what most of us do - they closed their fucking heart.
Certainly I can think of at least ten examples in which I closed my heart - shut it down, drapes over the shutters, cellar door locked. Buried under six feet of soil. Cause, a little bit of me died.
How long will I continue to live like this!? How long will we stand on the side of the river watching all of the real artists. "No, I am just an admirer," or, "No, I don't sing karaoke, I just watch and judge the others." And all the while, our hearts are still six feet under.
I CALL BULLSHIT
The truth is - I can’t think of a single moment in which I am not tapping into my creativity. Whether it is choosing boots or tennis shoes, Americano with room, or when am I going to get a minute to whack-off in the bathroom. And then there is the parenting - OH SHIT THE PARENTING.
Someone once said, “The greatest act of creativity is to become a parent.” I believe it. But as a Dad and Husband and Writer and Friend, I find it challenging to really dig deep into my imagination with all of this God Damn Pressure!
My Current Solution. I’m giving no fucks!
That’s right. When I really let go of giving a shit that’s when I actually feel myself. That’s when I feel alive. That’s when my creative juices flow through me and come spewing forth in all areas of my life. Like Midas touch, my essence flows into the food I cook, the smile on my face, the gait of my strut and the way I swear. A brilliant dirty mouth is the sign of pure genius.
I keep repeating a mantra to myself. “Fuck yourself alive!” For some of you this may be risky, borderline, possibly even offensive. Good. Then I am making my point.
Here is what I have been doing to stay dangerous - to keep the complacency demon at bay. I've been inviting every bit of shame that I can find in me. All of it. The sexcapades or in my case the lack of sexcapades, the all night drug feasts, the lies to others, to myself! Especially those lies I tell myself - haha. How gullible I am.
“Be yourself, everyone else is already taken.” Oscar Wilde.
These words by a man named Wilde have teased my lips of late as I go through a mid-life realignment and inward journey to what I am made of. What matters. What I have no fucks about. And surely what I do give a fuck about! Sure, I would love to buy the motorcycle, fill up the tank and run away with my words and a fifth of dewars. It sounds good until all of the things that inspire me (breath in) are missing. My wife’s majestic ninja moves, my kids silly laughs and exhausting requests, my dog's relentless barking, all of it. They are my creations or at least I am a co-conspirator. They've delivered unto me that which makes me happy to live and be alive and to use my imagination to create. To Surrender!
I beg upon myself to stand up. Be courageous and scream at the top of my lungs, “YAWP - you silly mother fucker - YAWP".
As the energy flows through me and my chakras - firing up the uncomfortable desire to change and transform. The words flow through me like I am a prophet. Who am I to keep that to myself. That is a responsibility that I am unwilling to deny any longer. The action that I take is the act of breathing. The act of being alive comes when the action is taken. Wrought with opinion, worry, anxiety and trying to not give a fuck.
I ask myself the question, “Are you a writer? And do you think you will ever share this with anyone?”
My answer is YES!
And to my wife, my answer to your question, “Yes, baby. I will not go gentle into the good night.”
To all of you reading this to the end. Congratulations. And I ask you - "How are you going to be dangerous?"