I called her to compliment her on the workmanship
she accomplished and she told me she does this for
museums and galleries when things are damaged or
broken. She called herself a Porcelain Conservator.
I loved the sounding of those words and thought to
myself; just maybe I could call myself a Dance
My meaning would be that I try to instill and
encourage everyone to go out and dance for the fun
of it, for the social aspects of it and for good
mental and physical health. Perhaps I am upgrading
myself to being a conservator but sometimes I feel I
Many folks write me that I 'saved' them from
being bored, from being depressed and most of all
from themselves. They say
they are my 'avid' fans and my delighted readers.
That makes me feel so good and I realize that
anyone who reassures and supports another person is
really a conservator. A conservator is a caretaker,
a guardian and a restorer. Nancy restored the broken
head of a statue of a lady sitting on a chaise type
bench wearing a ballerina costume and because of
hammering by workmen in my house doing porcelain
tile removal; the ballet lady lost her head.
We picked up the pieces and put them in a plastic
baggie and took them to her. She looked it over and
said she could restore it.
The University of Maryland got a new president.
His name is Wallace Loh and he said the following
that his mom told him when he was young. "There are
those that sing and dance and there are those who
enable others to sing and dance. Don't ever forget
what your responsibility is."
How impressive that line is and how productive
for anyone hearing it. Not everyone can sing and
dance or act or be a lawyer or a doctor. Everyone
can enable others to have the spirit to go and do
the action they want whether it is song and dance or
My friend and medical practitioner Dennis H.
Myers here in Baltimore said one day to me "people
can hug you in an email."
Wow, what a thought. We send emails and receive
emails as part of our everyday life. When I was
working in 1959 or so we could not imagine that one
day we could know the sex of the unborn child, we
could not imagine computers where we could
communicate in an instant with anyone anywhere. We
could not imagine having a phone on our waist or in
our purse at our beckon call (no pun intended).
So we who can sing and dance can still be
enablers and still inspire others to do things they
never believe they can. We can hug someone in an
email; we can be conservators in anything. It does
not have to mean being able to put broken porcelain
statues together. We can put people's thoughts
together and help them accomplish whatever they want
whether it be ballroom dancing, going back to
college at an advanced age, learning to golf,
learning to sew, and even starting a small business.
My friend Dennis is a conservator because in his
vocation being a physician's assistant and also a
counselor, he is a conservator. He is conserving a
person's health, his mind when necessary and most of
all he gives a mental hug by his very personable
attitude to everyone. So hug someone in an email,
encourage someone to restore their ambition and you
will be their conservator. The broken Lladro piece
of porcelain decoration is now all together and
sitting in a place of honor on my baby grand piano.
Though no one plays the piano anymore, the piano is
the background for the statues and is in a way a
conservator itself. It is the keeper and restorer of
beauty holding onto the delightful sculptures and
figurines. I imagine sometimes that they come alive
and are dancing for me across the piano top. Just
like the elves in fairy tales come to life and do
things, so are my sculptures. They are probably
dancing in the dark of the night when we sleep.
I know the lady ballet dancer sitting on the
chaise is happy to be back in her space on the
piano. She would if she could give me a hug.
So enable someone to be or do an interesting
thing and you will have given a hug to yourself. You
will feel so complete in having accomplished this
idea and given it to another person. Anyone can be a
conservator and that is now my favorite word because
that is what I want to be and have tried to do these
many years since 1990 when I wrote my first dance
encouragement article. I did not know that word
applied to me or anyone who I knew until I met
Be a caretaker and take care of others with a
hug, help or happiness. Dennis is in his medical
practice, Nancy is in her restoring of broken
statues and I try to be in writing dance articles.
It is a good feeling and one that stays with us