Monday, August 29, 2011

I'm not political or funny

Please bear with me today.  It's Monday.  I've missed a few hours of sleep but it was worth it.  Last night we stayed up watching Date Night with Tina Fey and Steve Carrell.  I rented it because on occasion, people who I meet suggest that I bear a resemblance to Tina Fey.  Please excuse me for living under a rock, but I have never seen a full episode of 30 Rock.  I did manage to see one of Fey's Sara Palin skits on SNL.  I love her wit, her funny northern accent and the way she works with randomness.  Like Robin Williams (but not quite as outrageous), she slips in and out of alternate "voices" and inserts odd, random ideas and images into the flow of conversation.  
Her comedy is like soup with  unexpected flavors.  She's alternately a boring potato and a red hot chili pepper.  
When people mention that I look like Tina Fey, I'm glad it's the Tina version and not the Sara Palin version (thank God my hair is no longer big and I dumped the wire rims!)

When people say "you look just like Tina Fey" I say "It's too bad, because I'm not political or funny." 

But sometimes I can be a little of both.  Unfortunately I haven't figured out how to write funny here on the blog.  Here I seem to work with insights and memory, not comedy.  I remember a time when my words brought an audience to a sustained, rolling laughter.  It was a powerful experience.

Like the time when I felt called to deliver a message during Meeting For Worship.  Those of you who have never attended a Quaker Meeting should know that during silent worship, the Holy Spirit sometimes prompts a person to stand up and speak to all who are gathered.  The prompting feels like an electric current through the heart, and the more resistant one becomes to standing up, the more current one feels.  To resist is to experience a feeling like one's heart will burst, it pounds so hard.  Hence the term "quaker."  Officially, the name for those who gather in this way are participating in The Religious Society of Friends. 
In any case, I was new to our Meeting for Worship and the topic was about faith and stubbornness. 

At the word stubborn, my heart felt fluttery.  I was afraid to stand up, and after much resistance I popped up from my seat and began to say "I connect with this idea of stubbornness.  In fact, I am 37 years old, and for the first time in my life I understand that the name "Jenny" is the southern name for a female donkey."  
After a great pause, the congregation laughed.  The laughter paused and I stood there.  Then they laughed again, louder, with more voices joining in.  This went on through another pause.  I'm not sure what I said after that.  I think it was something about my bull headed determination and my holding on to things that I should let go.  Later, someone spoke to that message saying that being stubborn is sometimes a very good quality. 

So I am not funny on a regular basis, but I think I could learn to see myself and my habits in a more humorous light.  My life is funny in it's own private way.  If you could see what I look like before I sit here in the morning, and what goes on thirty minutes before I stick my fingers to the keyboard, you might wonder if I was Rowan Atkinson's sister (Mr. Bean).

My life is comedy of the physical sort.  It's getting up at 6:00 am and trying to get through three long-hand pages of stream of consciousness journalling while the dog and cat alternately interrupt this process with food and bathroom needs.  In between my service to them, I try to manage filling the coffee pot and toast a slice of bread.  I sit down for a moment only to stand up again with the prodding of a doggie nose or the sight of the cat rapidly pawing the window as if she could rub a hole through the glass.

It is a life that is as boring as a potato, but sometimes as exciting as a red hot chilli pepper.

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