The Hexacoto

Listening to the sound of one hand clapping

In pursuit of happiness

A gay man is marrying a woman he will never romantically love, or even have sex with.

A friend is moving in with a woman he could never see as a lover.

Initially there was shock and outrage all around from the ones around him,

“Marrying a woman?” they’d say, “Have you lost your mind?”

A (spouse) and two kids, a dog, a kitchenette. The wholesome American dream. He could pull a Madonna and adopt one of the kids from Africa, he tells me.

Apparently he has given up finding love. Apparently he has given up on disappointments and hope.

In the past, we’d call that resignation. Today, he calls it “achieving the life he’s never had.”

“Is this what the whole fight for marriage equality was for, so that you could marry a woman?” I wondered to myself, but never actually telling him that.

Then I realised that in my judgement of his decision, not only did I realise what my own views on marriage are, but that had I told him off, like some of his friends did, I would be imposing my views on his. And who was I to curtail what my friends choose to pursue? If my friends choose ‘happiness’ in whatever forms they see fit, I will be supportive, even if they aren’t the same as mine.

So I only wished him the best in his pursuit of happiness, no matter whether he eventually walks down the aisle with a bride in hand or not.

Circus death by old age?

Someone once asked me, “Is doing circus tiring?” and I replied, “Yea, sometimes after circus, I’d get so sore and tired I wouldn’t be able to pick things up from the floor.”

“Maybe I’m getting old,” I joked.

To which he asked, “What, how old are you, 23, 24?”

“25,” I replied.

“Yea, that’s like probably like circus death, isn’t it?” he said.

Which I suppose is kind of true. In Cirque du Soleil, most circus performers get their best run in their early 20’s, and by the time they’re after 25, they start to consider retiring from circus. Or so I’ve heard.

Maybe my aches are telling I’m getting old, maybe I should cool down with the exertion, but then what fun would circus be if one is going to do a geriatric version of it?

Aches and sores are external, but what about the internal aspects of circus? Some of my circus peers and friends who are dancers feel that at a certain age, they should settle into a sort of gravitas and step away from the limelight; it is time to “act one’s age.”

But that indicates that there is a certain way to behave when one is of “that age.” Should a 50-year old stop dancing in public because it is unseemly? The moment you stop working on your craft is the moment you give in to these societal pressures about what one’s age should be.

I should be able to spin my fans in public even if I’m not considered to be “in my prime” any more. I’ll stop spinning the day my arms refuse to lift the fans any longer and my legs can work my unicycle no longer.