Kate Bush said it better
I came upon a Ted Talk video on YouTube later last night titled “Don’t Do Your Best”, the talk presented by a man named Keith Johnstone. The description names him a “world renowned improvisational theater instructor”. I listened for a couple of minutes, remembered the hour my phone wake-up was set to tweet this morning, and went to bed. Like much of this life, you snooze you lose, and the video traveled back to the beginning overnight, perhaps with behavior the way I see crazy-shaped trees along North Harbor Drive dancing when there’s no humans around. Anyway, it’s 12 and a half minutes from beginning to end, and I’m planning to watch it sometime this morning – maybe 10 minutes from now. Before I begin what I’ll affectionately refer to as “My first day of work”.
I’m attracted to “Don’t do your best”. There’s a familiarity with my final (of 14) written-down and up-on-the-wall New Year’s resolutions, taped there the first week of January – “Don’t be prepared”. Something about improvising now, and now, and, again, now. Not prepared for a thing beyond checking both ways when crossing the street. Clearly, it’s resolution as goal, work in progress. Cervantes’ “The road is better than the inn.”
Anyway, I’ll watch the video. I’m 74 and clearly not prepared for work. Improvisation feels like a real thing in bunches lately. I went to Trader Joe’s yesterday morning and did not buy peanuts, which I eat like a junkie, all proud of myself and my self-restraint, then drove to a different Trader Joe’s last night after the meditation meeting and bought two bags. Probably not doing my best. Though I did buy a couple of boxes of kleenex, which feels important when I’m at the beginning of a new journey and my nose is running.