Celebrate And Dance For Free

27 January 2017 Lorin Clarke

Celebrate And Dance For Free

Celebrate honey. A thing that is made by actual armies of actual bees, loyal to a bona fide queen, fighting to the death to organise their golden produce into neat little hexagonal compartments…and you get to eat it on your toast.

Celebrate cinnamon.

Celebrate accidental naps.

Celebrate the call of the kookaburra. Really! What a completely ludicrous thing to take for granted.

In fact, you know what? Celebrate the grand, expansive theatre of the natural world. What might we have if we didn’t have storms? It really doesn’t bear thinking about. The history of art, of literature, of religion, of cinema, would all fade to beige in the absence of the creative influence of a real ripsnorter of a storm. Not to mention the unbearable dramatic tension of a cool change. And the best performers in the world: the lyrebird and the peacock. They put Meryl Streep to shame. Celebrate the backdrop of the sunset. The scale of the mountain. The special effect of mist.

Celebrate idiosyncratic friendships – those ones you can’t quite explain.

Celebrate the privilege of watching another human being absolutely excellent at something. Playing music, skateboarding, drawing, cutting up celery into tiny thin translucent slices incredibly quickly while also holding a conversation, packing a very full car boot with unfathomable precision, glass blowing, origami, sorting something out on the phone.

Celebrate the instinct, regardless of physical ability or actual desire, to roll down a steep grassy hill or dive into a body of still blue water.

Celebrate a clean workspace.

Celebrate the celebrity status of the ladybird in children’s books. So many beetles in the world. How did they do it?

Celebrate the word discombobulated.

Celebrate beans.

Celebrate trees growing sideways towards the sun, or tiny plants growing in inhospitable places.

Celebrate your favourite jumper.

Celebrate the gorgeous little accidents of technology that deliver imperfect but realistic memories, like the blur of a nephew sprinting before a glowing bonfire. What better depiction of an evening? Or the moment when everyone thinks you’re taking a picture but it turns out it’s a video, so there will always be a record of your mum and your grandma and your Uncle Steve grinning their white teeth at you in a frozen but convivial huddle, one of them asking “Did you take it yet?” while someone off camera cracks a joke and Uncle Steve says something about dying waiting for you to take the picture…and being discovered here centuries later by anthropologists.

Celebrate the smell of the earth after rain. Tarmac. Grass. Dirt. Even cow dung. A 100 per cent improvement after rain.

Celebrate serendipitous shadows. A person behind you on the walk home making it suddenly seem as though you are wearing an elaborate hat. The elegant version of yourself that appears on the path in front of you when the shadows are long and lanky, like maybe you might be someone else after all.

Celebrate eucalyptus. The most patriotic smell on earth.

Celebrate the weird little performances of manners that humans perform. The handshake. How odd. To briefly hold the hand of someone whose name you are learning.

Celebrate the outlines of leaf skeletons in concrete that was set decades ago.

Celebrate shared glances and moments of stillness and kind offers and toasted sandwiches and the way the evening light softens the day around you and makes you feel nostalgic for things that haven’t happened yet.
In this day and age, it is important to constantly update this list. Be vigilant. Celebrate whenever possible, with reckless abandon if circumstances allow (in silent solitude
if required). This has been a public service announcement.

by Lorin Clarke

This article was first publised in Ed#529 of The Big Issue.