In college I gave up on store bought Halloween costumes. It was time to get my creative energy going.
I fastened Christmas lights around a wide cardboard tube and wore it as a helmet. I made a flannel beard and attached a tail to my long green wool coat. I was extremely proud dressed as the Cowardly Lion off to save Dorothy from the Wicked Witch of the West.
I chanted “Oh-wee-oh, wee oh-yo” while marching around the judges. In case you missed the last post, the underlying costume theme of saving the day continued.
“And 1st place goes to the nuclear reactor!” announced the bartender. Damn it. Lost again. At least the Long Island Iced Teas were keeping me cool.
“That’s you!” my friend yelled. The bar erupted in cheers and looks of admiration.
What the heck?
In retrospect I guess I did look like a reactor and my chant may have been interpreted as an alarm siren. However an activist was not the persona I was going for.
The following year I decided to forgo saving mankind unless subconsciously I believed that mermaids rescue drowning sailors. I sat nimbly on a bank of seats encased in a long skirt sewn together at the bottom and reshaped into a tail. A piece of fishing line attached my wrist to the bottom of the skirt allowing me to wave and wag my tail in an alluring fashion.
My shimmering top was pretty good but my painted face of aqua blues, teal and green swirls was really something.
I didn’t win a prize but I sure felt beautiful.
Near the end of the night an old man came up to me and murmured sadly, “You poor thing, do you get beaten often?”
What the heck?
“Wait… I am a mermaid“, I wailed.
“Sure, sure honey. It’s okay” he replied.
I swam/hopped my way into the bathroom to realize my magnificent make up job had lost definition. I looked like I’d literally been beaten and tossed from a dry-docked ship. I guess the old man was trying to rescue me.
Pantanjali’s Sutra 4:15 says different minds see objects (costumes, events, comments) differently.
We all have instances where our intentions were misinterpreted. Disappointment, anger, frustration, and misunderstandings can take hold. “Am I an activist or a battered woman?” I ask myself. Perhaps observations from others allow us to talk with our own true self.
Yoga is about taking time to understand our own thoughts and intentions. What are our wishes and hopes? No one knows the truth except us.
Do you want to feel beautiful? Do you want to save the world? Do you want to win? If so then do so.
Feel. Save. Win.
The Cowardly Lion felt brave, he saved Dorothy, he won back his pride.
Namaste- oh Halloween don’t come my way.