Different Clown – Same Old Show
Recently, the National Clowning Association announced that there soon will be a shortage of clowns. Membership declined from 3.500 to 2.500 and the ranks are thinning and aging. How do we get younger people into clowning the associations president asked. A valid question – surrounding a tremendous challenge of our times. Honestly, who wants to be the entertainment clown, behaving silly and flapping around, stumbling, self-humiliating, purposely acting in such a way that others can be distracted from their mobile communication device for long enough to crack a smile? Being a clown is hard work!
Most definitely, being a clown in our times is a liability. What if your joke was offending someone? What if a “concerned” parent saw you act in such a way that they could perceive a hidden discriminatory insult against their challenged child? “Are you mocking….” Uh! Oh! Lawsuit! Times have definitely changed, today’s clowning must be much different from what it used to be. Aviation is, too.
Scrutiny Is Normal. Whenever you step on a pedestal to hold a speech, or appear anywhere publicly, you are being “evaluated” and you’re being “judged”. Some people in your audience are prejudiced against you, some are favoring your acts and appreciate them, most watch and go on with their daily lives. Your “credibility” is constantly on the chopping block, even if just by anonymous little pricks who watch from a distance, silently, cowardly, trying to “expose” you for whom they think you are. Again, most don’t know you or what you stand for from a hole in a cows behind, but as we all know, opinions are just that… opinions. The simple fact that you have an opinion and share it with others, annoys and offends your enemies. Accept it and go with the flow on their little coward attacks.
Our way out of this misery is through changing of ourselves and through open, constructive conflict and debate. Such conflict and debating may require a level of honesty most in our industry aren’t willing to expose themselves to. The nature of the beast is silence. We have been habituated to be silent, despite the screaming, ignoring the falling men around us. To change that status Quo requires no human being – it requires a downright act of god.