Friday is One Awesome Thing Thing Day.
The Royal We here at One Awesome thing has anointed Friday the new One Awesome Thing Thing Day, sort of like a simple little project within this project for you for your weekend meant for you to have fun with, think about, play around or tamper with. (JUMP STRAIGHT TO THE LAST PARAGRAPH IF YOU DON'T WANT TO READ ALL THIS SEGUE STUFF IN BETWEEN...BUT IT'S PRETTY GOOD SO...)
In conceiving this bright idea (say it like "any more bright ideas Ferris?"), I thought about how much I loved doing projects as a kid. Or the IDEA of being part of a project. Par example, I couldn't wait for the "Reading is Fundamental" Summer Reading Club at our town's library. All I wanted was to get to the top of that illustrated tree poster with stickers of all the Judy Blume books I read. The poster was behind the librarians chair, all fluorescent lit and glowy and all I wanted was the glory of seeing my name up there proud and literate (and obsessed with reading Roll of Thunder, Hear my Cry twice in a row). Then there was the Dynomite Arts & Crafts Club, in which the only two members were me and Lisa Castronovo. The goal to do every craft in every adult arts & crafts book we could find proved difficult for an 8 year old and her 10 year old neighbor who wasn't really interested in arts & crafts, yet we always threw googly eyes, glitter or pompons at the problem when we weren't making watercolor Rorschach butterflies and interpreting each other's dreams. It was the summer I never saw the last letter "a" in the word "material" and pronounced it "matteral" for roughly two years.
Later, in faux-grad school I realized I could propose my own projects and talked some granters into granting me a grant and so I went to India and sat around with toymakers and painters for about a year and documented them with a camera and the ways they were passing on their traditional art techniques and knowledge--including business skill and acumen or lack thereof-- from parent to child. I used a lot of sign language, held a lot of kohl-eyed babies, visited crooked sellers in the bazaar, sat on the floor in 100F heat for hours as they monotonously painted the same eyes on the same wooden Krishna dolls, I made paint with real laquer, I watched as they plucked the tail hair of a pet squirrel, tied it onto a piece of straw from a broom and used it as one of the finest paintbrushes I've ever used. Mostly, I learned a lot about myself and how I could live on virtually nothing if I needed too. I came back to the states and dropped out of Grad School and tried to just make art. These PROJECT-HEAVY experiences were so transformative that I held them up as models when later into adulthood, my artist's block-block got too dark-dark so I decided I should create my own personal research project/arsenal of knowledge again and so created "My Month of Italian Futurism" in which I furthered my thesis that fascists loved Block Letters. There was also my "Spring of Cannibalism" in the early aughts, where-in I read every book I could find about Michael D. Rockefeller and went often to the Oceanic Wing at the Met which revealed only that cannibals were great at art and making canoes and also art-canoes. And now this One Awesome Thing Project after many years of projects in between, some of which failed such as the Almost Drive My Husband Away Project and The Baby-Project and the Making Everyone Else Happy Project and the Who I am and Why Are Things the Way They Are(?) Project...some of which were successful--the Bonbon Oiseau Project and the Live in The Moment Project and the Being Married to the Best Man on Earth Project. From Pain and Projects comes Wisdom I think, but it's never-ending. And that's the good part. So before I get to the meat here, which is the new project within this project itself, I'd need to proclaim here that I am PROJECT oriented, PROJECT driven, PROJECT POSITIVE. I enjoy a challenge, I want to learn, I want to question, I want to try any little thing to wake me up out of today's normalcy. If it helps me to see things in such a new way that the me I was yesterday becomes a sort of new, fresh revived version of me, a makeover of the very best kind, then sign me up no matter how rough. It's the Life Project I've been waiting for. It may seem exhausting but trust me on this, it's like being shot out of a velvet cannon into a pool of warm jello (not original--credit goes to husband who says crap like this ALL THE TIME). Very in the moment. Join me Awesome friends? (Jump to below the photo-proof that I held a lot of babies in India and got peed on more than a few times...there's a metaphor in that statement somewhere, prizes for those who find it---->)
SO HERE'S TODAY'S ONE AWESOME THING FIRST FRIDAY THING-(work on it over the weekend!): Write TWO quick notes to TWO people, anyone to whom you are thankful. Remember something they did for you or something you learned from them and let them know how much you appreciate what they did or gave or are. Go deep if you want. Remember one thing in particular or a whole way they were with you that changed something in you, eventually or right away and for the better. (TWO Hints: your thank you's could be to someone you really don't like, anyone dead or alive, someone you really don't know or someone you know very well...it could be to someone you really do like, to someone you love or to an enemy you've never forgiven. Could be to someone you just met who may have recommended a really good movie that changed your life, even just a little... Write a little or a lot. Spend the weekend with it or don't overthink it--write it or don't write it, talk about it with someone else, let it roll around in that noggin or just let it flow baby. Share with us next week if you want on Our One Awesome Thing Facebook Page, or our Instagram or the Tweeterz.
Have an awesome weekend, Deb oxo