Today is my first day of baking school. I thought about posting a recipe or something baking-related, but it was tough to find just the right thing to express my excitement. And then I remembered that I still have a few dancing photos to share with you. And also, some words of wisdom. Because when I turned 40, I got way smarter. No lie. That photo up there came from Carol Anne. She has a blog called Rock Salt – you should go visit her. You might remember her from Bake My Cake 2012. Yah, that Carol Anne. Carol Anne’s photo basically represents my first day of school in movement. That’s how you do art, people.
Carol Anne sent the following note with her photo:
Right, let’s get this straight: I’m a ridiculous dancer. I bust the biggest moves, lots of which involve pointing and most of which involve miming along to every possibly lyric with the wildest mime gesticulations available. Sometimes I’m surprised that people will dance with me, though mostly the kind of people I hit the dancefloor with are cool enough to get it.
This is probably the best example of my ridiculous dancing from a fairly recent birthday party. It’s not a flattering picture, but I think it expresses the exuberance with which I hit the floor. I’m not sure what I was dancing to. I don’t think that’s really the issue.
That’s my wee mammy in the background, and my sister, whose party it was.
I’m not an elegant dancer, or graceful or beautiful like a lot of the other photos people are sending. I’m not a cute kiddie in a costume, like you and your sister (adorable). I’m not even holding a dog. I’ve never taken a dance lesson in all my life. But I love to dance. Oh my, I love to dance.
Carol Anne? That photo is wicked awesome, and your words do a pretty good job of summing up the spirit of dance – you’ve gotta let ‘er go and let ‘er flow. Fun fact: when you’re dancing, it’s hard to worry about other stuff.
I’m gunna lay some stuff out for ya. I’m gunna put some stuff down, and you’re gunna pick it up. You’re gunna be schooled. You see, when I tell people that I’m going to baking school, I often hear, “but how can you stop teaching ballet? HOW?” It’s pretty… annoying. So you learn to respond with sage words like, “I’m open to new possibilities,” which often gets you a blank stare in return. Sometimes, people will say something about how you’re wasting your talent. Yup. People will actually say stupid stuff like that to you. Those people need a swift kick in the arse. But that isn’t your job. Nope. You don’t have time to kick every arse that needs to be kicked. You don’t have time because this life ain’t a dress rehearsal – you’ve gotta get out there and bust some moves. That’s my first piece of advice: don’t stop to kick every arse that needs to be kicked.
These past few months have taught me that people are not just set in their own ways; they are also set in the way they perceive you. How they want you to be, who they want you to be. Scribbling all over that picture they have of you makes people uncomfortable – because it’s inconvenient for them. You see, if you change you, they might have to adjust too. Now, if you’re lucky like I am, the majority of people you’ve surrounded yourself with will be super excited about your new adventures – they’ll be high-fivin’ you the whole way. So that’s my second piece of advice for you – straight from Carol Anne’s note: hit the dance floor with people who are cool enough to get it.
And here’s my third piece of advice, or perhaps, a suggestion: take it to the next level. Like Carol Anne up there. Whaddya say? I’m taking a leap – and sure, there’s a possibility that I’ll land in the orchestra pit, but who cares? Claw your way outta that tuba and give it another go. Maybe you’ve been planning a grand jeté of your own. Let’s jab our fingers into the air with exuberance. Let’s leave it all out there on the dance floor. Let’s hit people in the face with our sweat!
I want to thank you all for your best wishes. You’ve left peachy comments all over the place, and you’ve sent emails to wish me luck. I’ve been behind on responding to emails and comments lately, and I’m behind on commenting on other blogs. There’s a chance that this will get worse. Let’s assume it will, okay? But you should know that I read each and every comment and email you send me. Know that I’ll be reading them on my iPhone at school. That I’ll tweet you from the can. That I’ll facebook you from the cafeteria.
It’s hard to express how much you all mean to me without getting covered in snot and stuff, so this is just to say that I’m glad you’re coming to baking school with me. And I can’t wait to hear about the plans you’re baking up…
Are you ready? Let’s go!