Friday, January 31, 2014

Simon says, "Cry!"

This is Jefferson & his parents, back in 2004.
 I met them when I was in Peru & I sponsored his education.
He just graduated from high school!
Yay, Jefferson. All the best to you.
If you want to do something similar,
check out Angels of the Amazon

I'm not much of a websurfer, as you might guess if you've read my periodic "why the blog alternative" explanations. HOWEVER, the other day I went nutsoid on youtube, watching video after video in which (mostly young) people surprised & delighted the heck out of the judges on various talent competition shows. (Britain's Got Talent, The X Factor, American Idol, that sort of thing.) OMG! To see a young Indonesian girl in a head scarf do "Grenade" or a goth boy who has never sung in front of ANYONE in his whole life (not even his parents) come out with the most beautiful opera or the girl with her dancing dog. Wow. Just thinking about them now makes me happy. I feel like anyone can do anything. (I did NOT watch the ones where anyone who could NOT do anything humiliated themselves in front of the judges & were completely surprised when Simon reamed them a new one…)

I'm not going to make youtubing a major hobby, or even a minor hobby. I'm glad I did it. Someday -- not soon at all -- I'll dip my toe in again. But it did help make me even more hungry to create, to do the things I do well, to get them out there. I'm not going to try to flaunt my vocal skills to impress anyone -- I'd deserve to have Simon make me cry -- but I'm glad I'd already decided to get some of the novels (one is already almost formatted!) that have been languishing, unread, out there in e-book form.

The Csikszentmihalyi (I spelled it without looking!) book on creativity is interesting. It was first written in 1996, before anyone &/or their dog could publish their own books with great ease, before youtube could get you out there, in front of the millions -- or threes -- of viewers. He talks about gatekeepers being an important part of the creativity factor, outside validation. That is still true, but going viral can be the validation now, as well, the online public rather than just editors or music producers.

So, here's to creativity, to getting it out there, to head-scarfed girls & goth boys. To Susan Boyle. To Ashleigh & Pudsey. To doing what you love until you're great at it -- or to doing what you love whether anyone at all finds any value in it. The true value is in doing what you love. The rest -- making Simon cry, getting kissed by Tulisa, 4 yesses & trip to Las Vegas -- is whipped cream & cherries on top, but the sundae itself is in the joy.

Blog alternative:
278. Take some creative thing you do out for a walk, in public. It doesn't even have to be the thing you do best. (I have a secret -- well, not any more -- fantasy of learning a couple songs on my guitar & heading for a minor street corner with a hat & busking a little. I'm better than some of the people out there doing it…not many of them, but some.)