Still waiting for Reverb 10 to lob a meatball prompt sometime in the near future. Something super simple, like “What was your favorite color in 2010?” Any my response would be “Yellow. Duh.” Nice and easy, not something that I think about all night, no epic drafts/edits/rewrites. Nothing that makes me question the year I have had.
“What’s wrong with orange, Katie? Why didn’t you really love orange this year? Are you giving orange a chance? Maybe you need to focus some more time on orange… you could be surrounding yourself with other yellow lovers and never really experiencing a full spectrum of colors and their fans.”
Well, maybe I can lull myself into guilt about nearly any topic. Gosh, I am so talented.
Today’s prompt, however, still has me
somewhat totally stumped.
December 7– Where have you discovered community, online or otherwise, in 2010? What community would you like to join, create, or more deeply connect with in 2011?
I don’t know that I belong in any ultra-formal ‘communities’ with things like rules for membership, expectations of members, dues, and all that other organizational hoopla other than my friends (Rules for Membership: You are fabulous, sometimes funny, mostly genuine, can make and/or eat good food and hold your liquor) and family (Dues: More than financial, pop up at surprising times, and a yet a worthwhile investment in the people who know you best).
There have been numerous times this year, however, that I have had that sense of belonging that comes from being a part of a whole, even if it isn’t a well-defined entity. I felt a sense of community amongst the dedicated group of men and women who were all working diligently towards the completion of our Masters degrees. I feel a sense of community with people I talk to who have recently graduated, and like me are a little at a loss for what to do now (even if we have jobs. This transition is the biggest culture shock I have experienced to date). I am beginning to sneak my way into the local public health preparedness professionals community, and even though I still have a lot to learn and a long way to go, I think I am getting a pretty good start.
When I participate in [insert any running/multisport event you can think of here], there is a strong sense of community and belonging. On the morning of a race, you ARE a runner/triathlete and there is a collective prayer for safety and well-being of everyone on the course, a collective heartbreak when someone is injured, and collective triumph when the last racer crosses the finish line.
And then there are the silly little things that contribute to community everywhere you go: the cashier and barista at Caribou know my name*, the sandwich shop in the skyway knows my order (Grilled Ham/Cheese/Tomato Sandwich and a bowl of Tomato Soup, medium soda), the people at the gym ask me how my workout is going, fellow commuters on the train make small talk on the crowded evening rides home, the neighbors wave from their driveway or bring over homemade jams/breads/streudels**.
Community, for me, is more than a little difficult to perfectly define. But that sense of belonging is easy to feel and I’ve definitely got some of that goin’ for me!
Oh, also, in 2011 I would like to be the 6th Planeteer. Don’t know what that is? You clearly were not, or did not have a, child in the 80s/90s. Google: Captain Planet and the Planeteers. Current Planeteers include Earth, Wind, Fire, Water, and Heart so I would like to make a bid to be Logic. I think we could solve quite a few more problems with a little of that.
* The barista even knew I usually ordered soy and one day I ordered Skim (whoa! things getting a little craaaazy at the coffee shop) and she panicked that the cashier had rung it incorrectly and it might make me sick if I had the dairy. Turns out, I just think soy milk tastes really fabulous in a latte.
**Helllloooooo, awesome neighbs!