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A School Where All There Was, Was Play


Sudbury Valley School. I read about it today in an article in my shrink's office's copy of Psycology Today. I rifled through the People and Good Housekeeping magazines because the last time I picked one up, it had a dominatrix on the cover. The cover story was weird sexual proclivities. The basic premis of that article had been, If you don't think it's a problem (mentally), then it probably isn't.

This article, about chaos in a school and a democratic process that involved 4-year-olds and 17-year-olds equally was fascinating. I just looked it up to post the link on this entry, and I'm reading it and I'm thinking, Good god, I'd love a place like that. Doing whatever the fuck I wanted and call it learning. There was a vignette from a boy there about the virtues of concentrating while riding a unicycle. If I went there, I would dance and dance and dance and read about fiber optics and ask someone to help me build a radio and build like, ten radios and figure out how each one worked and I'd read soooo much mythology and gay sex I'd print out from the internetz. I might save rollerblading till I got home, unless I could get some kids together and teach a lesson to em. I'd spend a day with the table saw and a long piece of wood, slicing it up into tiny bits and then staring at the tiny bits until I found some wood glue and made like a statue or something. I'd read all the books in the library. They had a picture of a room they were holding a conference in, and it was wall-to-wall books, just barely interrupted by a door. I would do... so much. And I'd go to their little creek and like, fish. Yeah, I'd have time, there wasn't anything more important to do, right? I'd just fuckin' fish. And I'd sing while I melted a tube of glass over a Bunsen burner, just like the Chemistry classes have. I wouldn't be very good at singing, tho, if I went there. Singing isn't something I'm gonna do for the rest of my life, but I'm decent now. Despite what my sister says.

(Maybe I could do that. Maybe I could make up a fantasy world in my head where I would roller-skate between rooms and yell "whoo-hoo" like a fuckin' maniac and dance like crazy to mah tunes and...yeah, do shit with glass and table saws and maybe I'd get better at sewing. I'm not too good at sewing. It'd be a bit escapist for me, but it could be like a fake journaling project, for maybe a month or something. Say I did whatever I felt like that day (God, this keyboard's fucking squeaky) and feel a fake sense of accomplishment. Like having a sparkling clean house in one's dreams and feeling accomplished the next day.)

Then I woke up.

I realized that there are no deadlines hanging over my head. It's summer, dumbass. I could go watch a movie once every fucking week if I felt like it. I have a once-weekly voice lesson to keep me in shape for choir next year (which I have to wake up early for tomorrow - gaahh!!), I can't roller-skate right now because of this huge scab on my knee - I can't fucking bend it!! - but there is no shit stopping me from dancing and dancing and dancing, outside or in my room, or in the fucking family room - there's space down there! (Damn, fucking massage chair ain't plugged in - could use it right now!) There's no shit stopping me from reading mythology at the library, or bringing that shit home - there's no shit stopping me from going outside to play, once my fucking knee heals. Play with a hula-hoop or a huge ball we got. Ain't no shit stopping me from just buying an AP textbook and reading the whole fucking thing - rereading only what I found interesting. No shit stopping me from wearing that dress I bought, tomorrow.

That's a pretty painful realization; it's all my fucking fault that I'm not doing any of that. Yes, a place like Sudbury would facilitate that - make it easier - but I can still do all of that shit, on my fucking own.

There's no room to play down here right now. It's so full of stuff. There's hardly room to breathe. Tapes and puzzles and chairs and fuckin RASIN BOXES cover the floor. I'm trying to move the unneeded shit out of my room, but it's slow going, strangely. It's that maleasian curse - plenty causes its own sickness of the heart. Grr, there's nothing I can do about it now, is there? It's fucking 11:20 at night, and I have to wake up at around 9 tomorrow, and I used to wake up at 6 in the fucking morning, but there's nothing to keep me awake anymore. If I wake up at 6, I fall asleep again till like 9:30. Because there's nothing to do, ya know?

Imagine how awesome it'll feel (once I'm healed) to get up at fucking 7 am again, eat breakfast and hop on my bike and bike for a whole fucking hour. And come home before anyone woke up. I keep wanting to go down to the park and play my recorder because no one and everyone could hear. And I want to go to Ravinia. And-- woah. I totally had an idea I've never had before. Have lunch, with a friend. Like, go out and get em at like 11am, go to Potbelly's and eat lunch. Talk, go home at like, 1pm. Hell, I could ask anyone to do that. Should start with Jo.
He'd like that. Or, even not that invested. Like, ask em to just be somewhere by a certain time, and they go home on their fucking own. You realize, person reading this, that I've never done anything like that before. Damn mother's influence. Everything has to be planned to the gills. Oh, to live in New York City. See? This damn school idea has me dreaming. It's that sort of Zen malease that marks having all your wishes granted and finding that it's not exactly like you imagined. Nothing'll ever be. The way to live, is to accept that. And since my scab has now dried over appropriately, it'll probably withstand a shower. Good. I haven't had a proper one in a week and a half. Love you, anon.