April Fool’s Day…a day of bad jokes and silly pranks…the unofficial holiday of every class clown, every comedian and every comedy actor. With the year nearly a quarter over, it’s time to pause and think about the ways we’ve been foolish too, especially with our priorities for the year.
Of course, my inner hermeticist also thinks of The Fool Card, and it’s number, zero. What cliff am I too close to for comfort? Am I going to tumble over, get pushed or take a flying leap? Zero–what in my life needs spring cleaning or a clean slate?
It’s foolish to pursue your dreams. Do it anyway.
It’s foolish to choose passion over security. Do it anyway.
It’s foolish to choose the new over the devil-you-know. Do it anyway.
A fool that learns from their experiences–their falls–is no longer a fool Enough falls means the beginnings of wisdom. Get up, fall again, repeat. I’ve had to become very “okay” with failure in the past year. I’ve had to become very “okay” with things not working out the way I very much wanted, that some situations I wanted could not be forced into my so-called “right direction” despite my best and sincere efforts.
Failing doesn’t mean you’re a failure. So many of us feel pressure to “make something happen” and we discount that so much of success in career, our success in relationships, or success in life in general depends on cooperating with others with right intentions and often, good timing. You shouldn’t build a rock house on sand. The foundation isn’t right to support the weight. A business venture that’s too ahead of its time might languish. A relationship where two people seem good together, but don’t have the same intentions, will often fail. You’re only a failure if you don’t get the lesson from the experience, if you fell of the cliff without the lesson, if you’re bitter and not BETTER.
I think one of the great joys in life is being a fool, if you approach it the right way, not being reckless for the sake of being reckless. Being a good fool means that you are open to experience, good or bad, come what may, and that you have some healthy curiosity. You don’t have to know it all. You just have to have a lust to experience it all–or what you want of “it all”. You’re not closed off. So many people claim to “know” things they actually have no direct experience in whatsoever. They’re relying on the second-hand truths of fools who had the courage (or naivete) to ask “what if”.
Ultimately, I think good foolishness is foolishness with intent–not just wandering for the sake of wandering, but moving with intent, even if it means you get precariously close to some cliffs from time to time, literal or emotional. If you find yourself being foolish or accused of being foolish, check on your intent. Is your path of action serving to grow you or is this some kind of distraction?
Happy April Fool’s Day! Wishing you healthy foolishness and healthy curiosity now and always!
Follow Actress & Producer Kristin West on her adventures, whether on a movie set, at a film festival or on her travels.