Thursday, September 18, 2008

Emotion Motion

Find me on Fridays on Killer Hobbies while Kathryn is on hiatus. Join me at my launch party at the Jose Higuera Adobe, Wessex Place in Milpitas on Saturday from 1-4pm.

I just finished reading Brian Copeland’s “Not a Genuine Black Man.” Great read. I highly recommend it. Brian was a keynote speaker at East of Eden Conference and his story of how he came to write first the play, and then the book is full of drama and surprise.

When I stopped to analyze why Brian’s story of growing up black in San Leandro connected with me, I realized it was because he delivered his story with emotion. I was angry when the nun punished the eight-year old Brian for fighting instead of the four kids that jumped him. My stomach twisted when the tall white man followed Brian around the five and dime, hoping to catch him shoplifting. I cried when the young man lingered by the Golden Gate Bridge, trying to get up the courage to jump.

Emotion. The best stories—and the best quilts—are packed with it.

Think about it. Someone at guild shows off her latest creation. It’s pretty, nice colors, good construction. Okay, next. You’re ready to move on to something else. Then she tells you the story behind it, her voice cracking, eyes welling. Her best friend from childhood is suffering from breast cancer. The quilt is going to a soldier in Iraq. The colors are the favorite of a neighborhood autistic child.

The emotion is what we react to. Quilts and books give us an express train into the heart.


Camille Minichino said...

Nice, Betty. This reminds me of what we all learned as the difference between a string of events and a story.
The king died, and then the queen died.
The kind died, and the queen died of grief.

Betty Hechtman said...

Yes, emotion is what makes a difference and Camille's comment hits it on the head.