Thursday, November 12, 2009

More of a mason bee, me.

I haven't worked with social insects in my work since 2005, when I made a little suite of videos about honeybees. But those pieces were focused on honeybee tasks, and not group behavior. The main reason I haven't delved into the exciting world of social insects is that I'm always the one doing the performing, and there's only one of me. When I write that, though, it seems like a sad excuse: there must be a way for me to become a group of insects; alternatively, why haven't I worked with groups of people before?

Could I round up a group of people to behave like ants for an afternoon? Would I be able to be a Director?? I shudder just thinking about directing a group of people and becoming queen bee... I think I'm more of a mason bee when it comes to making work, to be honest. But perhaps I could summon some courage and pull together a little band of bug-loving buddies who like to do funny things with their bodies. (Shanti, I'm coming after you for this.)

On a different note, this morning I met up with BMC-pal Meera Subramanian, fantastic writer and Bird Lady Extraordinaire, who is off to India in just a few days to write about the disappearing vultures. While we were up in the beautiful Adirondacks together, Meera taught me all sorts of wonderful things about birds of prey--and I believe her teachings had magical effects: the day after Meera told me that owls fly perfectly, eerily silently, I saw an owl swooping through the forest without making the slightest sound. It was utterly bewitching.

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