This mid-term political campaign has left me feeling depleted, bludgeoned, and unhappy. The deluge of e-mail solicitations, the mud slinging, and the growing influence of outside ‘dark’ money on elections, depressed me.
The US Supreme Courts decision to eliminate dollar limits and disclosure requirements has made getting elected in this country, an auction to the highest silent bidder. There was a time when my outrage was translated into action, and I believed we could create systemic change; now I’m not sure anymore, and it leaves me feeling demoralized.
When I get this way, I adhere to my mother’s advice, when you despair, feel helpless or hopeless; find something to celebrate and laugh about (my survivor Mother knew something about adversity). I’m a believer in this principle.
Three days before the election, the Arizona Ballet was performing Swan Lake at Symphony Hall, it was Halloween and if you wore a costume you were eligible for special seating and prizes. I don’t need much provocation to dress up and clown. My wife was fully into it and came as an elegant butterfly winged ballerina, and I went as my clown character, a giant flamingo ballerina in pink tights and tutu. As many times as I have seen this ballet (my absolute favorite), this was the first time I ever went as a clown.
We valet parked across the street and strolled arm in arm into the most elegant venue in the city, accompanied by enthusiastic hoots and hollers from street performers and Pedi-cab drivers. The Box Office found us great seats and we entered the lobby to be greeted by titters, outright hysteria, and wide mouthed disbelief.
I love getting into this persona; it gets me out of my headspace, and into my spontaneous, intuitive heart space. I tune into my uninhibited, unconscious mind, and see the familiar landscape from a new perspective. This place always lightens me up, and affects those around me.
The ballet was great, and the scene hilarious, and I won first prize. In the midst of despair find something to celebrate, lighten up, laugh more…it really is the best medicine.