I’ve never been one of those committed hobbyists. What I mean is that, aside from writing (which once was a lifelong hobby and now is a job), I don’t tend to have much stick-to-it-ness when it comes to hobbies. Which may actually be a good thing because looking back at my hobby history, one might notice that my hobbies tend to get out of hand. And so while I may not be a committed hobbyist, you might say that I am a hobbyist who ought to be committed!
Let’s see, there was the time when writing was still a hobby, and I thought it would be fun to get a group of women together and write about . . . well, women stuff. And somehow from there I ended up on stage in front of a packed audience waxing poetic and humorous about (and I do quote here) “my bodacious ta-ta’s.” And that of course led to the rumor going around town that I was going to take my shirt off during the performance – and I could not, in good faith, deny that rumor. (Oh, relax … I was wearing a lovely red camisole underneath!)
And then there was the time I thought it would be fun to brush up on my rusty Spanish. So I tried to sign up for a Spanish class at the local community college. But there weren’t any classes that fit my schedule and well, Stand Up Comedy comes right after Spanish in the course catalog. And next thing you know I’m on a cable TV show, and MC’ing a fundraiser and up on stage at an open mic comedy night. But at least that time, I managed to keep my shirt on!
Then there was the one and only time I set out to sew a potholder … and ended up with a queen size quilt! And though I wish I could repeat that feat (for I do so admire and envy you quilters), I must sorrowfully report that I am no longer physically able to sew. (My sewing machine ran out of thread and I don’t know how to thread the bobbin.)
So hobbies have not always turned out well for me. But never one to give up, I have recently acquired two new hobbies. For the past few years, I’ve been dabbling in the dirt – gardening that is. And I do find that each spring my ambitions – and my garden – expand just a bit. Last summer was the most productive garden yet – which meant my family was eating kale in everything from June through November.
And I’ve been taking pottery classes for just over a year now. I’m proud to report that I have made excellent progress in this arena. I’ve progressed from making little, off-kilter bowly-things to making slightly bigger off-kilter bowly things (along with the occasional accidental olive plate). And you may ask, Eve, are you planning on progressing to making bowly-things that are actually centered and nice and round? Which is a question that my teacher asks. (A teacher who is in no way responsible for my off-centered-ness. She tries, lord knows, she tries.)
But I figure, there are plenty of potters out there making nice, round, centered pots, whereas, it takes a certain creativity to make perfectly off-kilter ones. At least that’s what I keep telling myself. And now I’m thinking, if writing doesn’t pan out for me, maybe I can go into pots! Of course, they’d all be off-kilter, so I’d call them OKPots or maybe, Good Enough Pots. And our tagline would read, “Perfection is So Overrated.”
But anyway, do you see the ugly pattern emerging? For the sake of my family and friends, I can only hope that FIRST COMES LOVE, THEN COMES MALARIA is so hugely (and quickly) successful that I will no longer have time to pursue my hobbies. Because, if I actually do expand that garden, it’s going over the septic tank and really, who wants poop-tainted peas? And while most of us probably are a bit off-kilter ourselves, do we really need pottery that mimics that? (Although wouldn’t it be nice to give a friend who leans to the left a coffee mug that leans to the left too?)
But please, someone stop me before another perfectly good hobby goes bad!
p.s. My pottery teacher makes exquisite pottery of all kinds and specializes in making totally gorgeous urns for pet (and people) cremains. Check out her website … if you’re into that perfectly centered kind of pottery.