Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Blowin' and Goin'

Well, let's see: what's been going on? Last weekend was a little more interesting than the usual going to the gym, never-ending laundry, or working in the flower bed. Aside from the flower beds, which i ought to write of sometime, the rest is so boring i'm rarely inspired to write anymore. Not that i'm bored with it....i just can't bring myself to blog about it. I'm not the wordsmith that my fellow fave bloggers MRT and Madame are. They can make things like Daily Resolutions and Job Rants into interesting reading.

Finally, I've got some fun material. My friend & cohort in silliness, (codename: April Fool) and I have scrounged up some work entertaining in the Assisted Living facilities. What started out as periodic volunteer stints has resulted in 2 regular monthly gigs. We dress all crazy in wigs, hats and goofy socks, then sing and whistle and dance until everyone is ready for a nap. OK, so some of the residents actually nap during the performance, but that comes with the territory. We don't take it personal: we are Professional Goofballs.

Here are some friends who like to sing along...and this fella also whistled.
Last week there was a gal who sang every last word to "Hey Good-Lookin, Whatcha got Cookin'?" We pass out instruments, feather boas and hats...its a regular party.
We sing favorites from the 30's and 40's, sprinkled with some country classics from Patsy Cline and good ole' Loretty. At times, they sing along. Other times they look wistful and daydream. One precious lady cried last week as we all sang "Let me call you sweetheart" reminded her of her husband.
On occasion, i've had people mention how they couldn't/wouldn't do what we do. "It's too depressing", they say or "They don't even recognize me anymore" one friend said. Well, i suppose it can be depressing, if you let your thoughts wander in that direction. I think it is more important to think about the people who live there, and put our own feelings aside for just a little while. Sure it might be depressing to visit one of these facilities, but think about these folks who have to LIVE there. They sure do appreciate a visit...whether they recognize you, or not. I think its more important for us to get over a little discomfort and unease, and give these people some genuine, sincere attention. It doesn't take very long and it makes them really happy.
I don't know why i care so much about old people. Maybe because i don't have grandparents left and they occasionally remind me of them. It could be because i fantasize about the way the world was when they grew up. I love their stories, however long. It might be the old movies i love, or maybe the Big Band. I love the teased-up tall hair, and the warbly, off-key hymn singing, funny sayings, polyester suits and sensible shoes.
Or could it be that they are such a captive audience?


Hagatha said...

hey, just a quick note to let you know your K.C. cousin has just recently started checking out your blog again and was wondering if you still have my e-mail cuz I must not have your new one. I just started blogging, although not as well as you, but a gal's gotta do something. Talk to you soon (more privately)

Mary T said...

I feel like a better person just for being friends with you and April Fool! Your performance art warms the cockles and sub-cockles of my heart! I only had a grandma for a short portion of my life and I also cling to the old folks for a dose of grandparentliness. Bravo!/Brava!