03.24.09

Take Time to Tap!

Posted in On writing, Tap dancing, Writers at 8:19 am by Marion

I finally made it to tap dancing class last night after a three-week absence. It’s hard to imagine a writer being so busy it makes the head spin … so when it happens I wonder just how busy those people must be who have real jobs … people who have constant demands, bosses asking for things, having to attend meetings all day, please the manager, arrange birthdays and sick days, deal with their co-workers who may be sitting beside them, meet deadlines for complicated reports, issue important memos and emails … make sure they checked the correct box on their income tax declaration form (I never knew, is it 1, 2 or 0?)

A writer must have uncluttered time … days and frankly weeks of it … to work. We must clear the appointments from our days … rid the hours of meetings or phone calls … lunches, office visits, even friends. That’s the only way we can work. Probably no one but another writer can understand this fact. And for those who don’t it can seem odd and even unnatural.

When my schedule is busy, that may mean one appointment. That’s busy. How else can a person put together 5,000-word articles unless they have lots of time. To. Sit. And. Figure. Things. Out.

With all this thinking, the writer would rather not talk for hours and days at a time, which is difficult when you’re part of human society. Unless you’d like to develop a reputation as a CRANK. Which I don’t. Though it may be true.

So on a day when I’ve had three meetings and other deadlines … emails … phone calls … and family situations … I couldn’t imagine making it to tap dancing. All that noise and effort. What I really wanted was to cover up in a blanket and go away.

Nevertheless, something inside drove me to do a single meaningful thing … and as absurd as it may sound … that was tap dancing.

So I turned up last night and there was Anna, my teacher, and classmate Catherine, and everyone was glad to see me … fearing I’d dropped out or something … I’ve been at it for 10 months now and I’m just getting somewhere, so I’m not going anywhere now!!

It was delightful and restoring to falap shuffle ball change my way through an hour and I was happy to see that I’d not really lost any of my ability. Of course it’s a pretty low baseline … but still I don’t want to regress!

Happy to report that today, no meetings … just my beloved words words words all day long … with a few dog walks and cat feedings in there. And a tap class next week.

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