I developed a fourth new practice for my mornings, before 12noon. It gets added to the bottom of this list:
2. stepping outdoors in order to walk + spend 30 minutes outside,
3. 20 minutes of cleaning, cleansing, chores and purging,
4. writing the morning pages.
Morning pages, a phrase from writer Julia Cameron, are described on en.wikipedia as:
Morning Pages are three pages of longhand, stream of consciousness writing, done first thing in the morning. The Artist’s Way says there is no wrong way to do Morning Pages—they are not high art. They are about anything and everything that crosses your mind.
The Artist Date is a once-weekly, festive, solo expedition to explore something that interests the artist.
The first day I did morning pages, on Monday, my forearm fatigued from the length of time and the speed of writing longhand. A lactic FeltSense or the “unclear, pre-verbal sense of ‘something.'” Yes, unclear and preverbal was that tingling in my right arm. Brought about by the quickness of my right hand moving pen over paper.
Like Daniel Pink said, I clicked through 4 sites this morning. As a result, I got to a dozen questions of U Journaling Practice: A 18 Step Journey through Your Field of the Future:
1. Awareness: What experiences in your life made you aware of the deeper dimension of your personal journey?
2. Frustration: What about your current work and/or personal life frustrates you the most?
3. Energy: What are your most vital sources of energy? What do you love?
4. Crack: Where do you feel the future now?
5. Helicopter: Watch yourself from above (as if in a helicopter). What are you doing?
What are you trying to do in this stage of your professional and personal journey?
6. Footprint: Imagine you could fast-forward to the very last moments of your life, when
it is time for you to pass on. Now look back on your life’s journey as a whole. What
would you want to see at that moment? What footprint do you want to leave behind
on the planet?
—————–(Crossing the Gate)———————-
7. What advise have you been giving from Self to self?
8. Intention: Now return again to the present and crystallize what it is that you want to create: your vision and intention for the next 3-5 years. What vision and intention do
you have for yourself and your work? What are some essential core elements of the future that you want to create in your personal, professional, and social life? Describe as concretely as possible the images and elements that occur to you.
9. Letting-go: What would you have to let go of in order to bring your vision into reality? What is the old stuff that must die? What is the old skin (behaviors, thoughtprocesses, etc.) that you need to shed?
10. Prototyping: Over the next three months, if you were to prototype a microcosm of the future in which you could discover “the new” by doing something, what would that prototype look like?
11. People: Who can help you make your highest future possibilities a reality? Who might be your core helpers and partners?
12. Action: If you were to take on the project of bringing your intention into reality, what would you like to accomplish: over the next three years, three months and three days?
On Friday night, I got two tickets for Mom to accompany me to the 105th National Western Stock Show — an annual event situated under the I-70 interstate that cuts across north Denver. And what was I, a Black man, doing at the rodeo?
Foremost, I was reacquainting myself with Colorado. But I was shocked to find out that that this was Mom’s first time ever at the Stock Show. She never attended as a kid in Akron. Nor while in college at Boulder. Or as a young woman/mother/wife in the 26 years between 1968 and 1984. Nor come once in the ten years she’s been back in Colorado.
As for me, I also wanted to go because a) I had never been to the Stock Show, b) it was some quality time with Mom before she departs next week, and c) it is a highlight every January. I learned that Mom was jazzed to go considering that she i) wanted to arrive an hour early, and ii) put on her finest cowgirl boots and her favorite scully, from Denver-based Rockmount Ranch Wear.
Once we got there, Mom was on the prowl for some grilled bison meat. No such luck. We settled for 1/4 lb sausages — mom having bratwurst, I opted for the polish smoked — that were on the far side of the Education Barn.
The rodeo began with bareback riding. It featured cowboys with names such as Buck Lunak (from Cut Bank, Montana), Tanner Aus (from Granite Falls, Minnesota) and Tim Shirley (from Bailey, Colorado). Mr. Shirley was riding a horse named Lion Eyes. or is it Lionize? I wondered. Turned out that that buckskin’s name is spelled Lyin Eyes.
The second event was steer wrestling. Though there were hundreds of people of color — Latin@s and Blacks — in the crowds milling about and in the stands, there was only one Black cowboy in the ring — #958, Darrell Petry from Beaumont TX. Petry was the first of the steer wrestlers to be successful. As the announcer said, “that veteran cowboy” bundled it up in a wee 4.1 seconds. Seconds seems significantly longer in the 4 or 8 seconds that one person is grappling with 800 pounds of power and flesh.
The third event for the night offered the most laughs: mutton busting. Mutton busting is 6- and 8-year old boys and girls gripping onto the backs of full-grown sheep. So, the mutton has more to do with the little kids riding on the back, protected with their hockey helmets.
The rest of the evening entailed bronc riding, tie down roping, the barrel race and ended with the bull riding. The announcer and clown kept the mood light-hearted, and the sound guy looped rock, motown, metal and hiphop. Even a little bit of Tupac’s ‘California Love’ when a Cali cowboy was in the gate.
The National Western is now over. I’ve got my focus and calendar ready for the Granby Rodeo, that runs from Memorial Day until July 4th.