Footloose and Fancy Free

People never cease to amaze me. I find that I learn something new about most people just about every time I meet with them if I am alert, inquisitive and not convinced that I already know everything about them. Curiosity is a valuable trait. It opens the door for all things to be made new.

An old friend of mine sent me a link that lifted my spirits at the end of a long day. It is an incredible synthesis of 40 different dance movie clips set the to the Kenny Loggins tune, “Footloose.” The next 4 minutes and 44 seconds are guaranteed to get your toes tapping:

The first time I saw the 1984 film “Footloose” was at a Bar Mitvah in Michigan during my adolescence. The movie thrilled me at the time as I recall, as much for the vicarious enjoyment of another teen’s successful transition through a challenging time as for the deeper message I mentioned in yesterday’s post, “Nobody puts baby in a corner.” What intrigued me more, however, was the opportunity to learn so much about the traditions of my friend’s faith during the special ceremony.

Had I gone to the party with preconceived notions about what I wanted to get out of it or about whether or not I was going to enjoy myself based on the other guests whom I knew had received invitations, I quite likely might have missed a golden opportunity to learn, to grow and to paint the town. Instead, I now know the meaning of: “L’Chaim!” (To Life!).

In my view the only way to live a long and fulfilling life is to never cease to be amazed by the life expression of others. There are beautiful places with jaw-dropping scenery, remote and fantastic getaways that renew and refresh, but there is nothing so delightful as witnessing something new finding expression through someone you have known for days or for all of your life. People are wonderful!

When life has you against the ropes, turn to others for inspiration. Don’t demand, don’t expect, but make yourself vulnerable enough to learn something new from them. What you learn might be about you, about them or about something less tangible, such as a particular quality of character that they reveal in a new way to you.

Be willing to be inspired. Why be a jade when you can live your life with the same level of enthusiasm, delight and surprise well into your senior years, just by remembering to let yourself be surprised by those around you? A contented life is optional. All that is required is your consent.

Are you in?

13 thoughts on “Footloose and Fancy Free

  1. Colin

    There are so many great suggestions in this thread. I think that the things I really take to heart from this are to not wall yourself off from others, and to not pre-judge others before they have a chance to show you something you’ve never seen from them before! Thanks!


  2. Tiffany R

    I’ve been reading your blog for several months now. It provides a constant supply of people to be inspired by. I think anyone who read your words today and watched the video could attest to the fact that creative expression is contagious!


  3. Brad

    Reminds me of something a friend once shared with me, he said, “be a ‘sanctuary’ for people, a totally safe place, a place where they know they won’t be judged, and the real person will reveal themselves”
    I’m in! – thanks for the post


  4. K.Newell

    I’m a huge advocate for keeping a well-rounded arts curriculum in our schools. This post gets right to the heart of why. Thanks so much for sharing your experience.


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