My therapist makes the point that spinning fire is elemental, speaking to a deep human yearning to control the uncontrollable. It’s primeval, it’s caveman days, it’s…
Me, I say it’s just bad ass. Plus, hey, you look like a wizard as an added bonus.
And cathartic. And peaceful. And sometimes I come home tired off my ass, arm hair singed, fingers covered in soot and ready to crash after kicking my own ass. It’s great.
About a year and a half ago I stumbled on this informal group who got together on the second and fourth Wednesdays of the month at Gas Works to spin fire and practice. One cold February night I lugged my camera down thinking I’d get a couple good pictures. I didn’t think it’d be my next Thing.
But after a month I parlayed my presence into a group shoot, picked up a prop shortly thereafter (I am a journeyman badass with a leviwand) and now I’m a regular and offering tips to new photographers and spinners alike.
I really feel like this, more than anything else I’ve done since moving to Seattle, really fits my particularly finicky Venn Diagram of Doing Stuff. I like going out, but I don’t like feeling obligated to go out. I love sharing my passions with others but find it frustrating when it can only be expressed in a group, like my time playing samba. One drum does not a samba make. I like being appreciated for a talent but I don’t like being pigeon-holed for that same talent. And oh please don’t tell me that, yes, we could go forward and learn or try something different but we have to wait for everyone else when I’m bored.
Here the challenges are my own. I can come and go as I please. Hell, I can go and make it clear that, really, I just want to be left alone in the crowd. I can take pictures when I want, flow when I want and never be pinned down with any one thing.
And always the chance to take the next, best picture.
Don’t mind me, I’m just going to be happy as a clam here.