Improv: Using Your Own Words


I love improvisational comedy. I always think that the actors are so ingenious when they take random words thrown out from the audience and do skits on them. That’s talent. Because it’s usually a troupe, and they all have to go with it. I used to love to go to the improv theatres in Chicago to see what they come up with. It’s a joint creation between the audience and the actors. So, today, I asked my Facebook friends to give me a word so that I could do some improvisational blogging. Well, they outdid themselves, and I thought I’d try to use all of the words thrown out in this blog. First of all, let me say that the first contributor to this little game was Hal Higdon. I am so honored that Hal even posted on my wall. He’s the author of “Marathon“, the book that inspired me to run my first marathon. That made my day! Thanks, Hal.

So, these are the words I have to use:

  1. BP
  2. Banana
  3. Shenanigans
  4. Ocelots
  5. Satiate
  6. Twist
  7. Contentment
  8. Merlot
  9. Beanie
  10. Resonate
  11. damn
  12. Onomatopoeia
  13. Ominous
  14. Sex
  15. Red
  16. Consanguineous
  17. Trust
  18. Home
  19. Fo’shizzle

I actually had to look a few of these up! Thanks, you all.

In a twist of fate, I have moved back home to Louisiana. I never intended to move back here. For most of my life I said I wouldn’t. But, I’m here now, and I’m enjoying the journey to rediscovering the place of my childhood. In particular, I’m rediscovering the place of my childhood but with a twist – I have developed grown-up hobbies and interests in other places, and I’m having to overlay them in a city where some of these interests are not big time popular. For instance, I don’t drink.

I’ve said before that Baton Rouge has a drinking problem. Now, that’s not everybody, but alcohol is readily available in almost any grocery store, service station, drugstore or convenience store. As I’m shopping for anything, I’m wandering through rows of bottles of Merlot, hard liquor and beer – loads of beer. It’s enough to satiate the most advanced alcoholic. In fact, tonight, I overhead the wine salesmen in a store telling a FRench woman that he doesn’t sell many French wines because the palates here are not that diverse. I suspect it might be because it’s not about the wine-tasting, it’s about the wine-drinking. So, foreign wines may not resonate with a large part of the clientele here in Baton Rouge. I would imagine slurp might be a popular onomatopoeia for some of the drinkers here. I don’t drink, so it puts me at odds with a lot of gatherings and parties. I’m not against it, mind you, but sometimes I’m just not up for the shenanigans of people who have been drinking heavily. I have to work a little harder to find people with like interests.

I have many relatives here. In fact, I have so many damn people with consanguineous ties that I’m going to find it hard to visit all of them, and I need to catch up on some visits. This presents an ominous challenge. How do I get together with all of these different family members when all of them have different interests? I like to run, but an ocelot  wouldn’t feel at home in our family. They are more the type that like to sit around and – you guessed it – drink merlot, hard liquor and beer. In fact, gulp might be a good onomatopoeia for one of our family parties… fo’shizzle. So, running would not be such a good gathering idea. I also like to wear hats. Perhaps we could have a hat party. Everyone could wear hats of all types. Some of the men with bald spots could wear a beanie. I’m pretty sure no one would show up in a BP cap. This area of the country is not too happy with that company since the oil spill wreaked havoc in the wetlands and the gulf. In fact, I’m thinking a hat party might be a great idea. It would appeal to all people, regardless of sex or age. Everyone can express themselves in a hat.

I trust that as I adjust here, I will find contentment even when I have to compromise with those of different interests. There is a big health and fitness community. They have runs and races almost every day of the week, many of them complete with post-race food. A lot of them have beer, too, for those who choose to partake.  Runners with red faces go careening over to the beer truck with a beer in one hand and a banana in the other. They’ve found contentment in a world of diverse interests. As I try to embrace home at midlife, I’m finding it a bit challenging, but I trust that there is no place like home. I know I’m going to love it here, fo’shizzle.

I think I did it! And, I even used most more than once … except ocelot … really, Dan?

Thanks for the challenge!




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50 Something single woman in Michigan who loves the outdoors, people, running and hiking.

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