Most teachers can relate to this simple fact. Students always react strangely when they see us outside of school. It’s either a hyper-freak out – OMG! Ms. Tash, Ms. Tash! or the total reverse; a shy backing away and a chorus of whispers – I think that’s Ms. Tash! What’s she doing here?
Do they think we are robots that are turned off and put away at the end of the day, like a stack of I-Pads? I talked to my sister about this and she said, “Look at it from their perspective. Seeing you outside of school is like seeing a unicorn.”
I am a bit of a unicorn. Because in this day and age, in a culture of me, me, me social media and with it the belief that we are all the stars of our own reality shows, it seems that everyone wants to be recognized for their individuality. Their spirit, creativity and the like should make them the black hole of the universe, sucking everyone else inside their vortex. Everyone wants to appear cray-cray, the risk-taking artist that deserves all that attention.
Maybe I’m the opposite. The crazy person who just wants to be normal. Am I crazy? Sometimes people say I am, but maybe I’m the only sane one in the room and everyone else is crazy. My last blog post generated a flurry of comments in the group postings on www.linkedin.com. Mainly camaraderie in despair, which really made me wonder if they understood me at all. Something made me feel sad last week. I’ve had my share of ups and downs, wearing my heart on my sleeve and on the walls of my home, as I’ve shared in a previous blog post. But my emotions don’t swing on a Vincent Van Gogh-caliber pendulum. I’m still sad about that particular thing but it’s compartmentalized now and I’m, yes, perfectly normal.
Emotion certainly plays a chunk part in the world of art, though, and it’s funny how important it is to many that they are perceived as more emotional than another. It’s not a competition, you know. There are all sorts of emotions that come into play when making art. It doesn’t have to be sadness. It can be serenity, anger or euphoria….
Whatever it is, it should be nurtured and supported. I have not been doing this as often as I should. I get invited to local art openings and events all the time and I just don’t go. I want to be a better friend. This Friday from 6-8 pm, the Edgewood Gallery is holding a reception for an exhibition and sale of artwork by Amy Bartell, Linda Bigness and Todd Conover. Edgewood is located down the street from my parents’ house – you can see the house from the gallery’s front door if you look east. It’s on Tecumseh Road in Dewitt, NY, right across from the Nottingham shopping plaza.
On Saturday from 10 am-4 pm, the Delavan Center will open its doors for a holiday event and sale. The Delavan is a building filled with local artists’ studios, many of them are Facebook and personal friends of mine. Linda, of course (find the link at the end of this post to the video we made on Columbus Day weekend), and Amy plus Laurel Morton and a slew of others.
This unicorn plans to make a cameo appearance at both events. I’ll be in black, naturally, but I draw the line at wearing a beret on my horn. That’s way too cliche, don’t you think?