Paper Clips: March 2022

By Elaine Corrington
March 2022

The Perfect Time of the Year to Proudly Do What You Are Terrible At!
When we pay attention to what we really love to see, and who we really admire because they have unbelievable creative skills and talents in a field that we cannot even begin to approach and succeed at, we stop ourselves.
How can we even imagine that we not only cannot be a success with certain talents and skills, but we really can’t deal with what other people might be thinking about our obviously pathetic efforts? Do we love or hate the successfully talented? To spend a long time working towards an acceptable “product” and then to have to swear mightily and hide the result???
Not an artist, not a musician, not a cook, not a seamstress of knitter, terrible athlete and dancer, not good-looking or well-dressed, not funny or smart, not a writer or speaker, terrible teacher or leader, can’t find a proper tattoo or hair-do, don’t remember important things (and yet totally remember what you really want to forget). And on, and on, and on, and on…Pretty good at eating chocolate chip cookies though…
As a native Californian, I always viewed March as just another month that was not very different from the other months. We always had time to do whatever we wanted; but all family, neighbors, and friends could see what we were working on. It took a couple of North Dakota winters to discover that there was powerful joy, learning, analyzing, and acceptance in the time we could hide our creative experiments– and finally discover that being different and unlike those who had the original skills that were so inspiring and powerful gave us a gift to create that was uniquely personal and important to us. Even if we joined in the laughter and fake barfing of those who finally got to peek once the snow was gone.
It is the action, growth, and unique personal contribution of your projects that make each person, and their space, unique.
In moving to Hurleyville, I discovered that there was a very personal additional ingredient that took all of the anxiety out of my creative impulses. An OFFICIAL DISPLAYABLE PROUD ACCEPTANCE OF MY CREATIVE RIGHTS AND PRACTICES. The Hurleyville Ukulele Orchestra and a large metal sign over my art (?) table that says BAD ART, UNINCORPORATED. Other signs and stickers and projects followed year after year, whether displayed or not. They gave me every right to do and display everything I wanted, and mix it up with other stuff that makes for a unique look at this human brain. Poor Observers!
March seems to always provide the beginning time for new project ideas and materials and tools– and the weather assists by keeping people at home. It is fun to make and work on all of your own choices and changes. By the time Spring weather truly arrives, you can be ready to live as a person with another unique interest– at any level of change and advancement in the life that follows.
You can so appreciate using March in this way. I would love to see what you do!