Clementine the Clown makes her professional debut at a local community fair this upcoming Saturday. She’s been a long time evolving. As a kid, I remember being a clown for a younger sibling’s birthday party. As a young twenty-something, I was a clown for a church event. I think I’ve always wanted to have a comic alter ego to let me express the silly side that perhaps hides a bit in day-to-day life. That, and that opportunity to help someone find their smile? Amazing. There’s so much muck in the world… any chance I get to spread a bit of positive-ness is my own little jab at sin and evil.
At one point, I quit software development and strongly considered being a children’s clown as my living. Reality struck quickly: I had left software because it was consuming all of my time, including time I’d rather have been spending with my hubby (we had no kids at the time). Children’s clowning would likely consume the weekends and evenings.. the very hours my hubby would be off of work. I’ve since realized that school and library gigs might have been a way to make a path, but that’s come with further exploration into the clowning world.
About a year ago, I was at a Christian retreat with a group of total strangers, and confessed a dream I had to build a clown troupe as a ministry offering of our church. Focus a group of folks on bringing joy and laughter into the world and go to places that need more joy and laughter: hospitals, nursing homes, church preschools, church itself, just about everywhere! My retreat partners encouraged me, and I sought out a local clown alley as soon as I made it home. That alley has helped connect me with a local clowning community and given me chances to perform in parades and other events, as well as learn at a regional clowning convention.
So Saturday, Clementine with her shoes of number 9, well below my actual shoe size as a person, much less a clown… well, she’ll be engaging the kids in our community at the local fair. A bit of tomfoolery and a bit of balloon twisting for the day. I’ve set up a Facebook page to highlight her shenanigans, as well as her own email address. We’ll see if Clementine can flap her wings / clown shoes a bit and fly. With a bit of luck and a whole lot of practice and determination, Clementine might get to come out and play more often.