As I attempted to gather and coordinate my limbs to extricate my jello-like body from the massage table, a phrase filled my head and would not release itself. “Shake It Up” nestled in and coaxed me to invest time to wonder where that phrase had come from…and why it chose to settle in at that particular moment? I was also curious what might have incited it to establish residence in my thoughts? I wondered if it might be trying to pass something along – maybe some wisdom or knowledge that might enlighten me or others?
Perplexed by this quandary, a phase by Samuel Johnson (1709-1784) shared in David Brook’s new book “The Road to Character” slithered into my thoughts:
“It is always a writer’s duty to make the world better.”
and, as also shared in that same book…
“Johnson, then, conceives of writing as something very like a Christian sacrament, defined in the Anglican catechism as ‘an outward and visible sign of an inward and spiritual grace given to us.” (from Literary Critic Paul Fussell – “Johnson and the Life of Writing” p. 185)
Wow…now I clearly feel obliged to sort this out – why has this phrase become a brain-filler for me? In order to tackle these new-found obligatory feelings, I took time this past week to ruminate on the phrase “Shake It Up.” I continually replayed the phrase in my head as I journeyed through my day. I encouraged and sensitized myself to focus – become aware of and listen to any messages that might reveal themselves and, therefore, be nudged to unfold. I repeatedly asked why it might be surfacing NOW…and what it might be trying to tell me? I wondered if these words or this phrase might have a purpose or if they were just part of a random thought (I rarely have those)? If by chance it was a random thought, I wondered why those words might come through together – in that exact order or phrase? My search to find meaning lead me down many random paths…
Could this phrase just be a reminder of those amazing times – a time when I styled my hair in cornrows and donned outfits – including those stylin’ lace-up boots – that announced the wild and crazy side of me? Or maybe it was just one of my favorite songs re-surfacing to remind me of what a blessing massage was…as it allowed me to again “worked it on out” and rekindle those “Twist and Shout” movements I treasured?
Undefeated, I continued to explore…trying to find meaning. Over the past several weeks, I’d noticed that I’d become acutely aware of the many changes affecting almost every element and aspect of society – and life – which really seem to be “Shaking it Up.” For example:
- For the FIRST TIME EVER, a ticker tape parade (205 since 1886) was held in NYC to honor a women’s team – the USA Women’s Soccer Team. Tickets (2,000 seats) for a ceremony at NYC Hall were offered. Within just under two hours, 12,000 requests were received.
- The Confederate flag, adopted during the 1860’s, has sat atop the SC State House since 1962. Despite its controversial history, one has to wonder why is it getting so much attention and why removal is being acted upon NOV – in July 2015 – after so many years of “same-old-same-old” have passed?
- Is it the first time in history a Pope has ventured into Burger King? Could there be hidden meaning in this visit (i.e. a promotional spin to promote Burger King….”If it’s good for the Pope, it must be good for you?”)…or is the Pope simply trying out for the long unfilled role of a true Superman??
- It now appears that an age-old personal pleasure (and in some cases a necessity) has become a cost drain for certain businesses. With the new chewing gum ban on airplanes, one wonders whether additional screening will be conducted at security checks to ensure that contraband chewing gum does not make it on to the airplane.
NOW…I might be on to something!?@%^
Have all of these events….and so many more…become the new norm? Does this new norm encourage us to challenge, question or undermine EVERYTHING – even institutions we’ve grown accustomed to or taken for granted? Will we continue to see this type of onslaught of “firsts”? Are all of these “first” a good thing…or might they result in some not-so-good outcomes? As I ponder and reflect on these “firsts,” that star-studded Taylor Swift enters my horizon…and I begin to think she might be on to something…which might help me gain balance between my existing or old world (“Shake It Up”) and the new world view that appears to be encroaching in upon me…“Shake It Off” . As one posting fan shares:
“Can Taylor be the first female artist to get 2 videos with 1 billion Views!! I think so let’s go Taylor!!”
Crafted, researched and written by: LIZ CARLOCK
The Write Resources, LLC™
© 2015 EM Carlock
Credits: www.offthemark.com, blogofthecourtier.com, http://www.wanelo.com