Winter of the Dance

jeff_pitcher_closeup.jpg
Jeff Pitcher, photo booth pic

I want to congratulate my friends Jeff Pitcher and Mike Schwartz for another inspiring feat!

After they bicycled across the country last year in The Great Sitting, Jeff proposed to his now wife (the wonderful, incredible Keri Smith) and then moved to her home in Flesherton, Ontario. {Mike also came to live with them for the winter to collaborate on a book project with Jeff.}

After bouts of writers block and winter blues, both boys, slightly depressed and with wild imaginations, decided to dance outside in sub zero temperatures on a street corner just to liven things up and see what would happen. What they discovered was how much fun it was, how alive they felt, how happy and free. And so they came back each day, and danced and danced and danced.

An excerpt from a great article in a Sacramento paper says:

On that chilly day, Pitcher–in the throes of a winter depression–grabbed his Discman and hiked to the highway crossroads in the middle of town dressed in pants, snow boots and a large parka. Once there, he danced with eyes wide, limbs gyrating, arms pointing to the sky, snow falling gently on his face. Cars slowed, the drivers staring through their frosty windshields; passersby stopped and pointed; and Pitcher just danced to the music in his headphones. After a couple of hours, he stopped and hiked home. The result was liberating. He returned day after day for several months.

And then they made a movie about it.
(You can see a screen shot here )

There are some extraordinary things about the movie that make me incredibly inspired and happy.

1. It was filmed with a tiny digital Elph point and shoot in “video clip” mode
2. It is one of the more unlikely, ridiculous and wonderfully human things one could make a documentary film about.
3. It is hilarious and honest and poignant and strangely compelling.
3. It is premiering this week at the prestigious Palm Springs International Film Festival.

I am so proud of them! So wish Jeff, Keri and Mike the best this week. They are currently dancing on street corners in Palm Springs during the festival…

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Hi, I’m Andrea

On this blog you’ll be learning with me how to use our voices, share our creative superpowers and live life in full color.

As an artist, photographer, life coach + mentor, I’m redefining what it means to be a SUPERHERO — ‘cause in my world, it’s got nothing to do with capes, spandex or sidekicks and everything to do with tenderness, intuition & baby steps of bravery.

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15 Comments

  1. Michelle Ensminger

    I’ve been keeping up with this on Keri’s blog. It sounds so amazing and makes me wish I weren’t quite so self conscious and conservative. I don’t know that I would ever have the nerve to dance on a street corner but I would certainly support anyone with that much courage and artistry.

  2. stef

    how totally amazing…what an inspiring group of people!!!

  3. Molly

    Love this!

  4. kelly

    if only we all danced daily.
    it reminds me of the DMB video
    [everyday].
    we need a lot of dancing these days.
    i have been reading keri’s post and
    not it all makes sense.

  5. Julia

    This is so amazing! I just adore the idea of the freedom of dancing on the street corner. I am about an hour from Palm Springs. Do you know when the film is screening? I would love to see it. As always… this is such an inspiring post. Thanks for sharing. 🙂

  6. Jennifer

    I agree with Michelle’s comments below – I wish I weren’t so self conscious either. I think sometimes we think (okay well, I think) that others will think that actions and words aren’t ‘cool’ or that they’re foolish and stupid, when actually, if you go to that documentary, you think it’s inspiring…
    I hope it comes it comes to my own independant movie theater!!

  7. Swirly

    I have been following Keri’s journal entries about their experience in Palm Springs this week, and it is an insanely inspiring journey!!

  8. Swirly

    I have been following Keri’s journal entries about their experience in Palm Springs this week, and it is an insanely inspiring journey!!

  9. Swirly

    I have been following Keri’s journal entries about their experience in Palm Springs this week, and it is an insanely inspiring journey!!

  10. Stephanie

    Andrea,
    This is so amazing. I absolutely LOVE it – the whole uninhibited spirit of the thing, and the fact that it was made on that tiny little camera, and now its at a film festival! To me this is an affirmation of what is good about humans – that if you follow your passion, your true feelings, without embarrassment, but just a positive attitude, good things will and do come your way.
    Bravo to your creative, fearless friends!
    Stephanie

  11. Esther

    Remember the letters you suggested people send in about the things they wanted to accomplish over the summer of 2005? http://www.superherodesigns.com/journal/archives/000617.html
    I wrote one. I wrote you a 3 page letter Andrea, but regrettably never sent it; lost under a pile of clutter and paper. However, I being the scatterbrain that I am completely forgot about it over the course of the summer. I rediscovered it today and read it with much anticipation. You were right, they are “magic”! I listed crazy things I never thought would come true in this time capsule essay. As I continued reading, I realized that I had done every last thing, reached every goal I was unknowingly striving for… the final one being completed not an hour before I found the letter tonight!
    Just thought I’d share my story. Thanks for the opportunity, you’re a great inspiration, keep up the wonderful work you do. I’m sure you inspire much more than just little ol’ me. 🙂

  12. Caroline

    This is one of the coolest things I’ve seen in a while.
    On a completely different note, does anyone know what happened to Scrumdidilyumptious (www.andthatisthat.com)? It just sort of dissapeared.

  13. jenn

    this is so exciting for them… I can’t be happier for them. What an amazing experience.

  14. Jenny

    This is so silly and happy. I can’t wait to get the chance to see it.

  15. jack

    that’s awesome! congrats to them! i’m kinda jealous i’m over on the east coast, as i’d love to see their film. kinda reminds me of when my cousin and i stopped in the middle of a grocery store parking lot and danced to “my sharona” blasting out of the shop’s speakers. altho it was hot out… yet still lots of fun. i always say, “who cares what people think! have fun!!!”
    here’s to having fun and not caring! hooray!

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