impro, by keith johnstone

I kinda wanna copy out the whole first chapter, but will restrain myself somehow –

As I grew up, everything started getting grey and dull. I could still remember the amazing intensity of the world I’d lived in as a child, but I thought the dulling of perception was an inevitable consequence of age – just as the lens of the eye is bound gradually to dim. I didn’t understand that clarity is in the mind.

On Gifted And Talented Education (GATE) as the gateway drug to being a massive douche:

I tried to resist my schooling, but I accepted the idea that my intelligence was the most important part of me. I tried to be clever in everything I did.

On school as trauma:

My ‘failure’ was a survival tactic, and without it I would probably never have worked my way out of the trap that my education had set for me. I would have ended up with a lot more of my consciousness blocked off from me than now.

On the importance of writing about something other than what one has read – ironically, the exact opposite of what I am doing here:

I had expected that there’d be a very gentle gradation from awful to excellent, and that I’d be involved in a lot of heart-searching. Almost all were total failures – they couldn’t have been put on in the village hall for the author’s friends. It wasn’t a matter of lack of talent, but of miseducation. The authors of the pseudo-plays assumed that writing should be based on other writing, not on life.

On aging disgracefully:

I began to think of children not as immature adults, but of adults as atrophied children.

Reminds me of something – what was it – oh right –

Not in entire forgetfulness,
And not in utter nakedness,
But trailing clouds of glory do we come
From God, who is our home:
Heaven lies about us in our infancy!
Shades of the prison-house begin to close
Upon the growing Boy…

Leave a Reply

Comments are closed.