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fears of attending nceca

updated wed 24 mar 04


Joyce Lee on tue 23 mar 04

I do understand this feeling. The first NCECA
I attended was in Las Vegas. I'd been on
Clayart a few months .... equal to the time I'd
been in clay ..... and felt familiar with many=20
claybuds. Of course, they would be friendly
and accepting of me .... they already had
proven that on the list. Still ...... after rising
early and finding my way to the Clayart
Breakfast room ...... I peeked in and could NOT
make my feet move further. Clayarters were
arranging chairs and preparing tables..... I could
easily have joined them. I recognized Mel from
CM pics and Mishy from a Jack Troy workshop
....... knew they would only
be friendly..... still I could NOT go in. I've
regretted it every NCECA since. What horrible,
humiliating thing did my sub-conscious (perhaps
harboring harsh memories from childhood),=20
think would be said ...
and, if it had been, would I not have been able
to handle it and choose from a well-worn list
of possible responses that would enable me to
slide into place ?????????

Keep in mind that there are many NCECA
attendees who are not members of Clayart .....
who do not feel a cocoon of acceptance=20
wherever they go ..... yet who still seem to
be enjoying the presentations and demonstrations...
just not with the verve and glee that we buds

I believe that it's not the things we do that we
regret late in life; it's those that we don't do....
the opportunities missed. =20

Remember that the Big Guys..... the Gurus.......
are so designated by others because of their
massive amounts of experience and information......
and their intense altruistic desires to Pass It On.
They're still folks (as you know deep down) with
human issues and fears of their own. Treat them
kindly and you will be rewarded with their
personal attention and help......... probably
forevermore. We've seen Mel, for example, arrive
in the Clayart Room totally exhausted from
glad-handing, signing, smiling, talkingtalkingtalking.....
sit down...... be joined by a group of claybuds
....... laughing happens, stories happen ..... and
he visibly relaxes. Do you think that David
Hendley who may stand in the middle of the room,
making himself accessible because he knows
that's what we want ....... do you really thing that
he just wants to stand there..... of course not,=20
he's waiting to be approached so he can learn
about you as you learn more about him.

Do attend....... or maybe begin with a Potters
Council smaller, less expensive Regional
Conference ...... there you will NOT be lost...
but will be an integral part of the whole. I'm
for sure not missing another one.... saving my
pennies starting today.

In the Mojave recalling the wild wheelchair
rides through O'Hare and LAX with my
.. tired
travelers literally scrambling to avoid being
scrunched. My God....... this was NOT what
I signed up for!!! Son later explained that there
is so much noise and movement in crowded
airports that they'd never get the chairs or
carts through if they proceeded in a normal,
more considerate fashion............. not
too sure about that myself...... still I was
first in line at every terminal..... and when
on my last leg back to the Mojave I was
rolled out to the waiting plane AND SEATED
before anyone
else was even allowed to move onto the
tarmac....... talk about embarrassing!!