Monday, August 18, 2014

"Never Done"

A friendly reminder that "Never Done" - stories of women's work is tonight at Club Passim. AUG 18th at 7pm. Some fabulous performers are joining me to create a great show and raise some do-re-mi for massmouth “Never Done”- Real stories from women at work in the world. We lean in, lean out, bend over, fall down and get back up. Come listen to a collection of stories about women’s work that are as varied as the women who tell them. Aug 18th at 7pm in a fund raiser for massmouth featuring cofounder Norah Dooley and friends: Devin Bramhall, Cheryl Hamilton, Cindy Pierce, Sue Schmidt, and Carolyn Stearns, at legendary Club Passim. The 1st Person Plural series is hosted by our honorary sister and stay-at-home dad, HR Britton.

Teaching artist:Young Audiences
In this special edition of 1st person Plural the stories are longer and there is no distracting competition. Lean back or lean in, your choice; just come and listen. Doors at 6:30 show at 7PM TIX are $15 at the door $12 online: Students/ seniors: $7 at the door only  A bit of back story about our Performers:Cindy Pierce is an innkeeper, storyteller and mother of three. Sue Schmidt is a therapist, drummer and mother of two. Carolyn Stearns is a full-time storyteller and lives on a family dairy farm and is a mother of four. Cheryl Hamilton works in Refugee Protection Devin Bramhall is a social media marketer and manager, HR Britton is an actor, storyteller, producer, educator and stay-at-home dad. Feature Norah Dooley is a storyteller, gadfly,educator and mother of four.Here is a teaser from my (Norah's) story: One Woman's Search for Right Livelihood:
Right Livelihood is a way of making a living that does no harm to others.
My first real job was working as a counter waitress at Brigham's Ice Cream Shop - making cones and sundaes while eating as much product as I could without getting fired. I got the job after my mother gave me a stinging wake up call. I was miserable, had just had my little toe broken by some hellions I had been baby sitting when she came to walk me home. She looked my me deeply in the eye - "You don't like taking care of children, do you?" She sounded a little surprised or bemused. If I was honest I say I didn't. I'd say simple the truth had wanted a job and some money. And I liked kids who liked me. But these kids were so tough and I liked kids. Their mom, a nurse working her doctor husband's way through a medical residency, was desperate so the pay was better than average.
Right Livelihood is, also, a way to earn a living without compromising the Precepts.
A few of which state:
No killing
No stealing
No misusing sex
We built a house, a barn and a shed
But I hated the babysitting job. And hated myself for hating it. That day, the kids broke my toe by slamming the bathroom door on it and locking themselves in after I had jerked my foot out. As they screeched with laughter and I hopped in pain, I was feeling quite out of alignment with the Precepts of the Buddha. In fact I was in a sputtering homicidal and ultimately powerless rage. "No killing?" Really. Clearly the freakin' Buddha had never babysat.
When my mother had asked me I exploded a, "Yes" that even surprised me. Then my mother said ,"No one who hates taking care of kids should ever be alone doing that work." Yeah. She knew what she was talking about. Skipping over the deep irony here, I quit babysitting; watching children for pay and never looked back. Until I had my own children....
To learn  more about Right Livelihood  Tickets at the Door are $15
Students/ seniors: $7 at the door only.

Organic farming Apprentice - Bittersweet Farm

Gadfly, Boston Public Library, 2010.

Saturday, August 2, 2014

The magic and power of storytelling strike again!

After listening to stories, some kids try my drum while others choose books at ReadBoston's StoryMobile.
The magic and power of storytelling strike again! Thanks so much to a mom who took the time to write to me.  This is from the ReadBoston site at Marcella Park this week, July 30th 2014: "My daughter and I came to Marcella Park today to see your wonderful storytelling. My daughter has autism and has a lot of trouble following a spoken narrative. But your telling was so clear and engaging that she was actually able to pick out some characters and plot points, which for her is HUGE (especially with no visuals, in such a distracting setting). She's 4 and a half and she's always struggled hugely with receptive language, and she was sitting far enough away from me that I couldn't coach her through the stories, so like I said, I'm super impressed that she was able to relay any of it back. So I wanted to thank you so much for being there today and for the gift of your stories." And thanks to all at Read Boston and Samantha Sadd at Marcella park who make this work possible.

At the Boston Nature Center, August 1, 0214
This summer I mark my 16th year with the Read Boston Storymobile program. We will tell stories all over the city from July -August 16, 2015. Storytellers provide the stories and the Storymobile program provides the books, logistics and oganization, plus? They bring a brand new and free book for every child in attendance. All sites are open to the public. Here is what a day on the road with Read Boston looks like... Typically we are scheduled in three sites in one of the many Boston Neighborhoods and the sites are accessible to one another by public transport. The van will have dropped off books for the expected audience and when I arrive someone at the facility or venue will have boxes of books ready. Sometimes everyone knows where I will perform and which way the audience will be seated. The outdoor venues can be super challenging with rain, traffic noise, other camp groups and many environmental challenges as well. Back in the day, the Storymobile was an actual huge RV with bookshelves. Soon they may have a pedi-powered version. But that is just a rumor.  As you read in the quote above, while the challenges are great,  the rewards are greater. 

"The Wampanoag and NipMuc, Abenake and Narragansett..."

 This year to help with what I feel is a  lack of basic knowledge about who is an immigrant and who the Native Americans are, I have, in fine folk tradition, added some local names to the chorus of a song by the right-on folk singer, Nancy Schimmel. Appropriately, the tune Nancy Schimmel uses sounds like a tarantella. Below is a screen shot of my resources for teachers and camp counselors. 

Background: After Schools in Boston are invited to apply for ReadBoston's After School Reading Initiative. Created in 2000, ReadBoston's After School Reading Initiative has worked with over 90 after school programs throughout the city of Boston promoting reading, literature, and literacy. To accomplish this ReadBoston works closely with after school directors and staff, coaching staff to lead engaging literacy activities. These activities include reading aloud with groups of students, creating independent reading times, and promoting book-related activities. ReadBoston also purchases and develops diverse book collections in after school programs, creating inviting spaces for reading. Both school-based and community-based programs are invited to apply. Organizations may choose to apply for more than one site, but must submit separate applications for each site.