September 17, 2020
I am facilitating a book study beginning today that goes on for the next ten weeks. I had participated in a four-week webinar on Anti-racism by the group offering the study. When the webinar completed, they sent an email inviting me to participate in a book study on Disunity. I am not sure why, but I somehow thought this was related to the previous series (it is not). When I signed up for the study, they had two time slots available which both worked well for me. The registration also asked if I would prefer another time. I put in one of the already allocated times, but the page would not send and gave me an error message saying I had not answered the question about alternative times. After three tries I finally put in a third time slot option. This time it went through. Two days later I got a response thanking me for volunteering to facilitate a third study group.
I had a similar experience during my Junior year of High School. Class Officer elections were coming up and the principal came on the intercom berating our entire class. Apparently, no one had signed up for any of the four positions. During the class change I met a friend and we made a bet on who could get the required signatures the fastest. We stopped people in the halls and walked into classrooms to obtain signatures of support. We both had the signed forms completed and turned in by the end of the next hour. There were others who also completed the forms, although not as fast. Neither of us campaigned.
Even though I was surprised by my selection as facilitator, I did not mind as I enjoy this role. I am too much of a postmodernist to say I will lead the group, especially in this case. All ten participants are in relatively similar positions and bring similar skill sets and experiences. As the discussion guide sent stated, all I really needed was to have a couple of questions to begin and then “the conversation will flow organically from there.” I was interested to note that synonyms for “organically” include both “naturally and spontaneously” as well as “slowly and gradually.” Since these are opposites, I am sure one will happen.
THOUGHTS: In my campaign speech for class president I promised to take four classes and to give a speech at the Senior Prom, both of which were required. My friend and I were elected and represented half of the class officers. I had run for president of the Junior class and had been defeated. I had wanted to be president then. Elections are not always about the best candidate but can instead be about “somebody different.” That is what brought the Governorship to Jessie “the Body” Venture (retired wrestler) in Minnesota, and Arnold Schwarzenegger (retired body builder) in California. Change to “something different” rarely works. Do not waste your vote. Change is coming and it starts with you.