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Thursday, August 25, 2011

... there are no small lives? - pt 2-

So actors with supporting roles and extra's can help build up the team, towing the entire play to a higher level. Is that what is meant with 'no small actors' ?

   What about this boy, who desperately wanted to be Joseph in the school's nativity play?  Alas one of his classmates got the much desired role. All there was left was the role of an innkeeper. Or he could say no to the entire play. There's always a choice, you know.
    His teacher gave him some time to make up his mind, the part of the innkeeper did not need much rehearsing anyway. After a few days the boy announced he'd take the role and he appeared faithfully at every practise.
At first there was little enthousiasm, but he suddenly changed a few days before the 'grand performance' . The teacher complimented herself on being able to help this boy accept his humble fate so well.
    And now it was the evening of the school's Christmas celebration. The hall was filled with parents, brothers, sisters and grandparents. Watching Joseph and Mary struggling on, desperately knocking at the last door of all the taverns of Bethlehem. Our boy openend the door of this inn and Joseph stammered  "Dear sir, do you have a room, for my wife is pregnant and ..."  "Of course my dear Joseph," the innkeeper beamed, "I have saved my best room for you!"   An ominous silene fell over Bethlehem and the school hall. Mary hid her face in her robe, Joseph grew pale around the nose, and swallowed hard. Then Joseph straightened himself and turned to his wife. "Wait here darling."   He went inside, returning only a moment later.  "These rooms are no good Mary. Let's go find ourselves a stable."

   How often do we feel cheated out of the role we dreamed up? Receiving a much smaller part in this play called "Life on Earth".  And how do you respond to that? What do you settle for?
    Do you participate in a team effort to put up a great show and support the main cast -whoever they may be- ?   Reward: without having planned it, the Review turns out to be positive about you.
    Or do you put all your energy in that short performance you are allowed, even if it were only to please yourself? Rewarded an upturned thumb of the Great Director, because you at least managed to shake the others out of their numbness? And you thoroughly enjoyed the moment you were on stage.
    Or do you behave like our little boy. Try to rewrite the play by yourself, knocking on opportunity's door instead of waiting for it. The boy did not receive a plume from his teacher, but his antic lives on as an anecdote that is absolutely worth telling.  He didn't ruin the play, it takes a lot more than one hairpin turn to ruin Life on Earth. Sometimes hairpin turns save us.

   Or do I look at life from a false perspective? Is there more than one play going on? A Broadway production that is being repeated a zillion times, with different people playing the main roles in different ways. And we are not just actors, we are directors, playwrights,  props managers and audience all in one life.

The cast extra's inServant of Two Master Yes I'm on it too.

   In my 'up days' I have the Zillion Performances Perspective and I am truly happy with all these different functions and my role(s).
   But on other days ... I feel horribly cheated. I feel like declining my role in that One Big Play. That one big Yoke, or should I say Joke? Why can't I find my spectacles on those days? Put them on to change to a happier perspective ?
   Don't think I never tried to work myself out of the shaft I fall into.
-  I've tried being like the innkeeper, but I ran into a smart Joseph. Dead end street.
-  I'd go for enthousiasm, but sometimes it is lacking and there's no supermarket that has it in stock on the shelves.
-  Going for the team effort is not always an option. In some groups I miss a sense of belonging. And faking it is a deadly choice: it means alienating you from yourself.

   When I get depressed, I am no better than a ball.  Once I'm going down, I'm not able to change direction. I just have to hit the bottom of the shaft, before I can bounce out of it.
  But then ... it is at the bottom of this horrid shaft where I've found the small scraps of diamond and gold that I carry with me.
  You know these tiny particles are good enough for me.  I'm using them in  my art, my humour, my habit to let cats loose among pigeons.
And I'm trying to share that with others -during my 'up days'-,  hoping to create up days for others as well.
   What do you do with your Part in Life ?

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