creative tension

Yesterday I was in a meeting with some incredibly creative and talented people gathered at Baptist House… writers, artists, designers, innovators, bloggers, photographers, film-makers, journalists, presenters, programmers and much more beyond. We had each been asked to share briefly something creative that introduced us to the group. When I first got that email I thought about what I could do: I could do a magic trick, I could tell some jokes, I could stick a rubber glove on my head…

And then, if I am honest, I forgot about it. Indeed I forgot about it until I arrived in the meeting and looked at the agenda. Aaaaargh! I was thrilled that I was not going first, and did some quick brain-wracking. What did I have with me?

No playing cards or props: magic tricks not likely to go well then.

No rubber gloves: that little display will be a bit flat without one.

Couldn’t think of any jokes: not going to go down well.

What to do? The time was getting closer and so far others had shared a story they had written, a radio interview with themselves, a ‘wordle’ they had created from tweets in response to ‘how would you describe me?’… Pressure was building. And I think that was what led me to my eventual solution.

And then I remembered my bloggerel, which may have been what had got me into the meeting in the first place. I had my tablet with me (Motorola Xoom) and thankfully had previously been at Baptist House with it and had logged into the open network. I switched it on, desperately hoping for a signal, and ‘hallelujah!’ there it was.

I thought about reading out a bloggage, but that seemed a bit sad. So in the end I read my ‘symbiosis’ poem (see ‘pomes’ page above). It’s autobiographical and is about the pressure I feel when I can’t find something and how my wife, Sally, is always able to find them.

I think it went okay. But if you were in that meeting and are now reading this, I am very sorry for being unprepared. I have often wondered whether I ought to start a new blog / ministry called SOTP. It stands for ‘seat of the pants’ and would relate cautionary tales about just about getting away with things or preparing at the last minute. I would intend it as a warning and encouragement to be prepared, however I have a feeling that it might turn into a celebration of all things last-minute and be counter-productive!

I want to say ‘thank you’ to the BUGB Communications Department for hosting the meeting, which I found very insightful, inspiring and encouraging. I hope it met the purpose for which they called the meeting – to help look creatively at how we communicate as a denomination. I drove home with lots of ideas buzzing around my head. Some of them may emerge one day. You’ll probably read about it here first.

One person during the meeting said, “I am not creative,” and in that context with so many talented people I felt like agreeing with them. Except that we are all creative. I believe it’s part of being created in the image of our Creator. Some people get creative with paint, with computers, with websites, with words, with images, with video and so on. Some people get creative in the way that they encourage others, look for ways to bless them, do their work diligently, suggest ways of doing administrative tasks better, in the intonation of their voice as they speak, even the way that they greet you. We are all creative in our own way: and that’s what makes the kaleidoscope of people around us. Look to see creativity in anyone and you will find it – appreciate it when you see it. Look for it in yourself and give thanks to your Creator. Then get creative!

Be blessed, be a blessing.

COPLEMTLEY – that’s completely out of order. (see yesterday’s bloggage for context, and yes, there may be a series!)

bluuurrgghhh – there goes another brain cell!

I can feel my brain rotting. It’s nothing to do with the operation, it is because I have been watching daytime TV. I am trying to keep to BBC channels because I do not want to be inundated with adverts encouraging me to consolidate my injuries and claim for debts I received at work (or something like that). I do not want to spend hours of my life being spoken to loudly by people walking diagonally towards me. Life’s too short for that.

But I am still finding myself chasing and complaining about cowboy builders and visiting car boot sales to sell whatever tat I have in my attic. blurrgh (there go some more brain cells). I am hoping to be able to watch some films that we have recorded over the past few days and also some DVDs that we may rent at some stage. Is that a good use of my time? I have read lots of books while in hospital and am a bit ‘read up’ and know that I have to take it easy for the next couple of weeks while my body recovers from what the surgeons did to it, but I can’t shake the uneasy feeling that I am wasting my time.

On the other hand, perhaps I need to see this time as ‘sabbath rest’ for my body and mind. I am considering resurrecting my novel that I have been working on (on and off – more off than on) and seeing if I can get it going again – being creative in the time I have been given. All of these are part of the way we are made – with bodies that can heal themselves, the need for rest and recreation and the ability to be creative. Isn’t God clever?!

Meanwhile I will be preparing myself for Countdown!

I have failed to find a daytime TV joke, so here’s a film joke:

A Director called in three famous actors and told them of his plan to make a film about famous composers.

Bruce Willis thought about it for a moment and said, “I like action movies and Mozart was an all-action composer, I will play him.”

George Clooney said, “I like being suave and cool, I will play the enigmatic Beethoven.”

Arnold Schwarzenegger said, “I don’t vant to be type-cast. I’ll be Bach!”