Wednesday, July 16, 2014

The time I thought I couldn't...

My EMWP colleague, Erin Umpstead, wrote this amazing piece about how writing is like hula-hooping.

I have never been able to hula-hoop in my life. As a child I would put the object around my waist,
Erin's hula hoop
The hula hoop, it mocks me.
start moving my hips, and immediately it was on the ground. To help inspire her writing, Erin brought in her own hula-hoop to the summer institute for inspiration and it has remained in room 320, mocking me.

So as others in the summer institute were looking for writing inspiration, they would grab the hula hoop and go to town. I, however, looked at the object with great disdain and envied all my colleagues who could actually keep the hula hoop around their waist as they gyrated their hips.

But apparently a proper hula-hoop needs to be weighted. And it should come up to your belly-button as it rests on the ground and stands on end. These two things make all the difference and can change you from a hula-hooping failure (me) to a hula-hooping master.

At first I was dubious of this idea that weights and proper height could transform my hula-hooping ability (or lack thereof), but I decided to, in the spirit of the Writing Project, make myself vulnerable and give it a go.

And before I knew it...
Beth hula hooping

I feel as if I must add a reason to Erin's piece for why writing is like hula-hooping and it's true of what I've experienced here at the summer institute...

...because even if you think you can't do it, you really can!! 


  1. Love it! I've always believed I can't hula-hoop as well, maybe I need a different hoop?

  2. How fun! I haven't tried to use a hula-hoop in years. There was a time when I was able to do it a little bit but never for that long. Love the way you connected it to writing.