Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Thinking for sheep

I've oft wanted to try my hand at stand-up comedy.  I'm constantly noting how comics construct routines, why the jokes work, different forms of comedy, and I've written a few bits.  One day I hope to do an open mic night and really nail it.  Reading this Tim Burke essay made my head hurt.  And that rarely happens.  Alls I know is that when I teach or perform, I always try to think for the sheep.*

*You should really try to read the whole link but the gist of it is, in Navajo culture thought = action.  If you want healthy sheep, you need to think about having healthy sheep (and take the appropriate steps) but there is an intentionality there about your actions.  I'm always trying to figure out "what sheep am I thinking for now?  How do I translate those thoughts into actions that help me get the kind of sheep I want?"  It's pretty much my entire teaching philosophy.  Note here, that sheep doesn't imply a lack of agency (a la right wing "sheeple") but rather autonomous agents of their own who generate wealth for the kinship network and community as a whole.   See also, Marsha Weisiger's excellent book.

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