Sunday, October 22, 2006

pumpkinfest 2006

the pumpkin gang
the pumpkin gang,
originally uploaded by tiredcynic.
It's interesting. The older I get, the more I feel stifled by experience, knowledge of what's "right", "good", "the way it should be", or "others do it so much better". As an adult, it seems harder to let the moment take you and just be spontaneously start overthinking things, planning them, needing them to be exactly what you see in your head.

The first time I really started to see this was two years friend Jen and I decided to carve pumpkins. We got everything we needed: shopped for pumpkins, put down a tarp on the floor, markers to sketch with, knives, spoons, trash bags.

Then we sat there and stared at our pumpkins. And stared. And then kind of embarrassedly laughed and admitted to each other that we were a bit intimidated by the idea of what to carve.

It was an interesting afternoon...I have a lot of good talks with Jen, and this was another of them. The realization that the creativity you have as a kid, the imagination, the awe...they are all a function of innocence. You can get it back as an adult, but it takes a bit more effort, and a willingness to abandon yourself to the moment, to risk being embarrased, to chance not doing it quite "right". Having acknowledged and named the feelings, we were able to work through them [after a few dry runs of sketching faces on grocery bags].

This year, we just went for it. Oh, we thought about what we wanted, and asked each other advice on mouths, noses, eyes, but it was easier this year. The picture is what we ended up with...and I think our pumpkins rock. [More pics of the pumpkin gang here.]

A big part of it being easier this time was trust: I can relax and risk making a fool of myself in front of her, because she won't laugh any more than is appropriate [and if she ever should, I could say "ow" and she'd stop...a sign of a true friend]. There is also the trust in takes a bit of confidence to plunge into something that might make you feel stupid/silly/incompetent/incapable. And often, you end up realizing that you aren't any of those things... least not this time.

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