Toy Talk: Etch-a-Sketch
So there I was sitting in the light shop at the Marian Theatre in Santa Maria waiting for the Stage manager to call me to my place to run by Spot light, affectionately called “Sniper 2” and there it was infront of me. . .
So its this rectangular shape, red outlined frame and 2 white knobs that reside at the bottom of the grey screen eager for your hands to grasp them and take control of the magnet line they long to draw across said grey screen. One knob will move the magnetic line up and down, the other from right to left.
Now, is this you. Do you stand at a normal, average shape outlined in a bright powerful color, only to remain grey on the inside? Blank with no direction until someone else starts to make your insides come to life?
We are so eager to have people notice us, and grab their attention yet we once we have attention we don’t know what to do with it. You’re on the spot, you stand there drawing a complete blank wondering of course if they will stay long enough to notice you are different on the inside than you are on the out. Why red, does it mean anger, does it mean love? It is primary, it can stand alone – as most of us can, so long as we have a flat surface to stand on. I’ve never seen a circular etch-a-sketch. . . have you?
So if the bottom of the toy is flat as are our feet we can stand and remain on our edgy rectangular shape, our edgy selves. And we can stand up and say I’m important, look at my clean edges, look at my strong outside appearance, and we only ever let those we care about touch us on the inside. Our heart, our soul, our spirit – whatever you’d prefer to call the grey area inside that can change with good news or bad news at the drop of a hat, or as it were – the turn of a knob. That expression you know how to push my buttons is not far off the turning of a knob to draw a line upward, or downward or straight across. And once both hands have assumed the position on these handles, only the owner of the hands knows what’s going to happen. Whether it’s God, or your mother, or your spouse, or your best friend, and God forbid – the person who hurts you.
And then you can think about how many people you’ve allowed to touch and turn those handles. How many people have brushed across your skin that actually have left a mark on the inside, and did you let them leave a mark? or does that line inside of you exist from someone you’d rather forget.
And then of course, you could always shake the toy out, erasing all the lines left behind, but really after time, you can still see those lines – can’t you. After so many twists and turns its not easy to just shake it off, is it. It’s not easy when you also know that shaking something you don’t want off, also might mean giving up something you do want to remember. Maybe something like, I love you but I can’t be around you – and so you shake it all away. And sometimes, if you remember you’d only shake lightly in hopes that not everything would vanish, but more often then not you were disappointed by losing something you admired in their on that grey screen. And after time, you don’t even remember what used to be there, in time all that remains are the old faint lines that have drawn out the inside of who you are.
Do you stand on your own?
Who do you allow to turn your knobs and leave their mark?
Is it worth it to shake it all away, only to know that it will either be gone forever
Do you ever look back and try to remember, and then try to recreate it – is it worth it?
Do you chose to look strong on the outside, only to be blank on the inside in hopes that someone will come along and leave a mark?
Life can be hard sometimes, and sometimes it really is about the ups and downs and the side to sides and about shakin’ it up to start over.
May you chose who leaves their mark in you, and may you be content with the marks they leave.