Silence and the Drum

I discovered something at last weekend’s monthly drum circle. I attend on a semi-regular basis because I enjoy getting out and drumming in a non-performance group setting, plus a friend runs it and I like to support my friends. Usually the focus is on raising and channeling energy with the drumming, That works well as a rule. Friend has a spiritual practice leaning toward shamanism and healing with drumming, and does it well. That type of playing is really about playing what Spirit moves you to play. There are always new people, and people with very little experience, in the …

Islamic Bogeyman, Redneck Reality

Last weekend on Twitter, I responded to Ibrahim Moustafa (@Ibrahim_M_), and then kept on thinking about the exchange. It’s absolutely true. During my teaching career, I had many, many students from not only the seven countries affected by the executive order banning entry to the U.S., I had students from other majority-Muslim countries not affected by the ban (Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Pakistan, etc.). I had Latino students in my classes. I had Asian students. I also had colleagues from a wide variety of countries over the years. Truly, never did I feel threatened by any of them, not even immediately …

Political Thoughts, Part 1 — How I Think, 2016 Version

(Oh, my poor neglected little blog, it’s sad that it took this to bring me back to you. But social media doesn’t provide the space I need for these thoughts.) A couple of weeks ago, one of my former students openly challenged me, not once but twice, on my posting of numerous anti-Trump/anti-conservative-agenda memes via Facebook while not posting any anti-Clinton/anti-liberal-agenda ones. Aside from the obvious retort that it’s my damn Facebook timeline and I’ll post what I want (as opposed to what others might prefer to see), I thought it was worth clarifying how I think this year. First …

43 Things is Gone, But I Retrieved My List

I didn’t realize it, but 43 Things went away at the first of the year. Somehow I never got any notification, so never knew to export my data there. But fear not, the Wayback Machine had me covered! I was able to copy it from here, and am pasting it here for posterity even though it isn’t a full 43 Things, and I’ve actually accomplished some of them in the meantime! I did omit the entries, cheers, and number of people with the same goal because, well, none of those matter anymore with the original site gone. The important thing …

10 Signs You Should Start Belly Dance Classes Now

Guest post by Amy Danielson of The Eye Atelier, reprinted by permission This list was compiled from the comments of lots and lots of belly dancers, and from the life experiences of Alexandra Moehagen and Amy Danielson. 1. You already wear all your jewelry at once. 2. When you listen to *any* music, you secretly want to dance. Or you just do. In the living room. In the grocery store. Wherever. 3. You have body issues, and are SO READY to face them. 4. You’re going through a major change. 5. You need a bigger social life. A lot bigger. …

I Hate It When I Disappoint Myself

Northside Tribe spent the last several months preparing for our big student show, Bellies for Babies, in collaboration with Jahara Phoenix dance troupe and Sherar, their student troupe. Saturday night, July 12, all three troupes took over the Dancing Goats Theater in John’s Creek to benefit the March of Dimes. I performed in three group numbers — two of our troupe’s choreographies, the Jedi Saidi to the Star Wars “Cantina” song and our new “Shashkin” tribute to John Compton and Hahbi ’Ru, plus our first ever troupe ATS® performance. With trepidation, I agreed to perform a solo by polishing up the improv I …

In This Place

Have you ever found yourself at a place, or an event, where you were uncomfortable and felt like you didn’t quite  belong, but yet you KNEW you were supposed to be there? Today at the Asheville Percussion Festival, a memorial Celebration of Life for Layne Redmond closed out the three-day event. I never met Layne. I only know her through her book, When the Drummers Were Women, which I added to my library and  read through long before I finally began to learn to drum, plus a handful of YouTube videos. The room was full of those who had been …

List Me, Baby!

(C4ward March Blogathon Day 4) Five Goals to Achieve Sometime Before I Die Create jewelry items that tribal dancers buy, love, and wear while performing. Perform a solo at a major bellydance event like TribalCon. Travel to New Zealand, and maybe Australia too. DH & I don’t really care that much for travel, but we could make an exception for this. Become an ATS® Sister Studio and/or Gypsy Caravan Collective Soul Certified dancer See the Aurora Borealis (Northern Lights). Just because. Five Goals to Accomplish in the Next Five Years to Move Towards Achieving The Above Goals Keep learning new …

Sharing My Favorite Creative Work

(C4ward March Blogathon Day 3 post, a day late because Monday is my insanely long day with no breathing room) What should I show as my favorite creative work? In what area did I DO my favorite creative work? Was it this pair of chainmaille earrings? Or these earrings made from one of my favorite pairs of lampworked beads? Was it this paper I did for my first art class on German artist Käthe Kollwitz? Or perhaps the debut performance of the dance troupe to which I belong at TribalCon last month? I can’t decide!!  

Five Year Plan? What Five Year Plan?

C4ward March Blogathon: Day 2 Prompt “Where” is your creative work going? Envision yourself and your work five years or more from now. Who are you and what do you see your work as “being”? How is your work “evolving” and “becoming”? What about your work inspires you? Inspires others? Where are you going and what are you doing after this (five-year) point in the future? The truth? I don’t have any kind of a five-year plan, artistic or business. I tend to have Artistic Attention Deficit Disorder (AADD) so what I am creating at any moment is based on …