Things I Do Passively

There are many. Sometimes I feel I ride in the wake of those who are more energetic than I and would barely do anything other than sit on my couch without their catalytic force. I feel I am very fortunate in this regard, as friends who call invite me to leave my house, neighbors stop by and invite me to play volleyball. The one thing I do contribute is that I say “yes,” and then must follow through.

Example: This weekend, for the first time, I traveled to both Alligator Point—a beach area an hour and change to the south of us, and Blue Springs Park in Marianna, a bit farther to the west. While I often think of spontaneously hopping in the car and taking a trip to such places…I think of it in a remote “I might do that” kind of way that has almost no relation to anything I would actually do on any given weekend, when I usually feel accomplished if I make it out of the house by three and go to a movie.

So anyway, one of Paul’s film school acquaintances invited me to audition for her short film. I said yes Thus on Saturday I got to swim in the bathwater warm ocean, and Sunday got to dive into a very chilly but super clear spring.

If anyone has ever been swimming with me, they know that cold is not something I do lightly…or quickly. I can easily spend the better part of an hour acclimated to the water, inch by inch, so that by the time people are ready to leave, I am almost submerged to the neck. In this case, my acting role required that I dive straight in and swim toward the underwater camera, as if reaching for someone at the bottom of the ocean. Rolling film is money, and scared I would chicken out on the clock, I struck a deal with the Assistant Director, where I would bend over in that ‘learning to dive pose” from swimming lessons when I seven, and when the director called “Action” she would push me in. Passive, yet efficient.

For the first take, I had not been in the water yet, and it definitely knocked the wind out of me. I couldn’t get as deep as I needed. Take two was my best—good splash, remembered to open my eyes right away, had breathed out before the push so it was easier to get deep (although for some reason holding my breath out is more panic inducing that holding it in). Unfortunately, I was told upon surfacing, the camera had not been rolling, so back to the diving board I went…Third time was a charm, and I felt very athletic and accomplished—like I had just swum the English Channel or something.

So, thanks be to the forces that pull me along and make life more interesting than I really deserve!

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