Friday, November 08, 2013

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One of several reasons I was a bad teacher: I dislike repeating myself. When I know I'm repeating myself, that is. Like everyone, I tend to say the same things over and over, but that's okay, as long as I've forgotten that I've said it before. When a former version is still resonating in my mind, though, and I try to say the thing again, it kicks up a feedback-storm in my mind – very like what happens, I imagine, to a stutterer, and with a very similar effect. I begin, hesitate, lose my place, and have to start over, only to have what I've just begun add to the confusion. A teacher needs to repeat things a lot. I find difficult, if not impossible. So when someone kindly suggests that I make a book out of my blogs, – as people do from time to time – something about embodiment and massage and meditation – it kindles a flutter, a minor panic, under my breastbone. Deliberately repeat myself? Oh, no.

Yet I'm thinking about it, in my ponderous way, and I'm even doing a little something like it, in that I'm starting to pick up old posts from the archives of Mole, refurbish them, and repost them over on my massage blog, where someone might actually see them. I do this against a lot of psychological resistance, which is why it's happening slowly.

Meantime: I am mortal, so very mortal. I gave a massage in a tea house, yesterday. I know nothing about tea houses – I'm utterly ignorant of all things Japanese – so I simply accepted that I must wear the white socks given me, in that space. I'm all in favor of taboos of place, and of ceremony and ritual that sets certain places apart; so I was quite willing to put on the socks. And massage is, itself, a sacred space to me – a place with its own rules, requiring a certain discipline of intention – so it felt appropriate, in one way: in another, I suspected that it was ludicrously inappropriate, and that somewhere Japanese spirits were cringing. Sorry.

Sorry, but that's my calling and my trade: going where people are, and working with what they give me. I'm a water-ouzel: a queer fish and an odd bird. I belong everywhere and nowhere; follow everybody's rules and nobody's. I don't know if I could do something so very drylandish as to write whole book.

1 comment:

Zhoen said...

From this odd duck, good luck.