Celebration x3

I used to be a bit of a culture vulture - went to concerts, museums and galleries, the opera and dance (modern, traditional ballet sort of bores me) – and most of the time, I went either with my mother or Ken. It was our "thing" and I have a lot of good memories connected to those outings. Like the time when mor - if you're new around here, that's the Danish for mom - and I were almost thrown out of the opera because we couldn't stop giggling at a particularly ridiculous performance. The time Ken and I went to see an exhibit by Anish Kapoor (astonishingly beautiful art and last year, Ken made me a purple hat inspired by this, which is breathtaking in person) and on the guided tour when the woman working in a gallery spoke of how she felt she could whisper all her secrets to one particular sculpture, we had to stop looking at each other in an attempt to control another helpless fit of the giggles. Ken and I, awed, seeing Cirque du Soleil for the first time together, both of us wanting to run away that very moment and join the circus, mor and I silently weeping with the power of a song.

And then I got sick and didn't go out anymore. When I started getting better, for a very long time, there wasn't enough energy for a social life and in the last year and a half, there may have been more energy, but it was used for other things and then there was the hellacious injury from January that never went all the way away. And somehow, I lost the part of me that used to go out and see things, get my mind and soul expanded and there were times when I felt like that guy in The Lives of Others - grey and bland and closed because there is no art in his life. Because art is necessary, no matter what they try to tell you.

And lately, after my vacation when AB was here gave me some space to think, I realized that spending all your energy on things you have to do makes your life disappear, because I have no idea how it got to be almost December already. It makes you disappear and I have vowed to change that. There's going to be more social in my life, more art, more taking the time to have a leisurely, meandering conversation with friends, because without it, I can't breathe. And in a revolutionary act, Ken, mor and I went to see a play this weekend. Festen is based on the Danish movie The Celebration and when I first saw that on the poster, exactly those words, flipping the languages - Festen is based on the Danish movie The Celebration - I laughed so hard I started hiccuping. It is a story of a family that gathers for the 60th birthday of their patriarch, not too long after one of the four children has died. When Christian, the oldest son and twin to the woman who took her own life, stands up to give a speech, he gives his father the choice between the one written on green paper and the one written on yellow. And then things happen. It is as powerful on stage as it was on film and made me want to see the movie again. It's playing at the Berkeley Street Theatre until December 13 and if you live in Toronto or are visiting, go see it. We went for dinner afterwards to debrief the experience and just talk until the restaurant closed and I felt like a normal person again. It's been a long time and well worth celebrating.

On another celebratory note, Dave has nominated me for the Canadian Blog Awards in the category of Best Disability Blog and they're right, it's an honour just to be nominated. Round one voting runs until the 29th - please go vote for your favorite blogs, having your say is not limited to only Canadians (and alerting you to the nomination while trying to avoid asking for a vote wasn't awkward at all. At all) (although, if you think I deserve a vote, by all means, g'head -I'd be honoured) (seriously. Awkward)

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