Actor, Puppeteer, and Teaching Artist

What is Making Me Happy : Amateurism

The weekly something happy can be as simple as opening night presents…


or something more complicated like a successful opening weekend full of friends and foibles (like a lead puppet losing a foot in Act 1).

Or something fleeting like the eye roll of a child who understands that their parent is being ridiculous in public but it’s out of their control…

But this week I think the thing that’s making me happy is amateurism. I am bad at simply doing a thing. I tend toward pursuing a thing to the furthest edges and beyond. I never y’know MAKE MONEY at a thing, but when I do a thing I go for it with the intent of being the best I can possibly be at it and if possible better than as many people at it as I can find.

It’s actually mostly a negative trait. It means that I end up leaving behind a lot of things that I might enjoy because I’m never going to be particularly good at them. But as I’ve been cooking a bunch the last two weeks I’ve been thinking about how much I just enjoy it. I enjoy the prep, the cooking, the eating, the sharing – in the right mood I even enjoy doing the dishes. But part of what makes it enjoyable is the lack of pressure. Pressure to improve, pressure to become a professional level cook, pressure to be perfect. I don’t have to have a career or open a restaurant…

I just need to use a little less lime in the stir fry and learn how to cook for fewer than 8.

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