Reader, I did it! I am the smug owner of a First-class BA Honours English Literature Degree, courtesy of The Open University. When I received my results on Friday morning, I burst in to tears of pride. All the hard work/whining about the hard work had paid off.
To celebrate, I participated in a local comedy show alongside my improv friends Hannah & Faye, in a sketch based on The Great British Bake Off. My character was called Eileen: a cocaine-sniffing Grandmother of five who was inspired to bake by her heroes; Mary Berry & Hugh Heffner. My props included a zimmer frame and two erotic cakes shaped like a pair of breasts, and a penis. What did I learn from this experience? a) my comedy friends are the best, and b) you can create anything out of some strategically placed muffins and Madeira cake.
When I arrived home later that night, drunk on the generous words of my friends (and gin) I was greeted by a card and bottle of champagne from my friend Rachel. I cried (again) and shut my eyes on a truly beautiful day.
This is not the first time Rachel’s been spot-on with her generosity. She recently lent me her copy of Amy Poehler’s Yes Please, and I’ve slowly been making my way through the hilarious pages, trying to preserve all the wit and wisdom Poehler’s accrued in her improvised comedy career. She’s an inspiration, and below are 5** of my favourite quotes from Yes Please:
**I couldn’t narrow it down to 5. I’m not even sorry.
‘I think we should stop asking people in their twenties what they “want to do” and start asking what they don’t want to do.’
‘The doing is the thing. The talking and worrying and thinking is not the thing.’
‘If you ever want to see heaven, watch a bunch of young girls play. They are all sweat and skinned knees. Energy and open faces.’
‘It’s important to know when it’s time to turn in your kazoo.’
‘Don’t think. Get out of your head. Stop planning and just go.’
‘Good for her! Not for me. That is the motto women should constantly repeat over and over again.’
‘Looking silly can be very powerful.’
‘Career is the thing that will not fill you up and never make you truly whole. Depending on your career is like eating cake for breakfast and wondering why you start crying an hour later.’
‘Shame is difficult. It’s a weapon and a signal. It can paralyze or motivate.’
‘It takes years as a woman to unlearn what you have been taught to be sorry for. It takes years to find your voice and seize your real estate.’
‘Watching great people do what you love is a good way to start learning how to do it yourself.’
‘Improvisation is like the military. You leave no man behind. It’s your job to make your partner look good and if you are afraid to look stupid you should probably go home.’
(Image Courtesy of: http://media.tumblr.com/tumblr_mceu6fy8n41rxa4z0.gif)